Breaking a Lease on Your Apartment
Your circumstances have changed and you’re considering breaking your lease, but where do you start and what are the consequences? The first step is to read and understand your apartment lease. A lease is a contract that is legally binding. If you decide to end your lease, you will have to pay a fee that was agreed upon when you first signed the lease. We look at the consequences of breaking a lease on your apartment.
What is a Lease?
“The lease is the contract signed by the tenant and the landlord. The agreement indicates the amount for rent, monthly or yearly arrangement, and the responsibilities of both the tenant and the landlord.” According to Apartments Near Me Blog: What is an Apartment Lease.
Whether you need to relocate or simply wish to move to another apartment, breaking a lease should be done with the right preparation.
Depending on the reasons to break the lease, you may come to an agreement with your landlord and avoid high penalties. If not, you could face the following consequences:
· You are required to pay the outstanding rental for the remaining lease period.
· You receive a negative rating on your credit.
· Your landlord decides to open a lawsuit.
· You have to pay penalties according to the lease.
So, breaking a lease is not a small decision. It has both financial and legal consequences that could leave you out of pocket and with negative credit. The best thing to do is to take some time to read your lease. If you don’t understand specific terms, ask your lawyer to help you learn what is required.
Along with reading your agreement, you must talk to your landlord. Being clear and open is always a good way to start. Record your conversation with the landlord in an email to ensure everything that was discussed is in writing. Also, give the landlord a fair amount of notice, so they can find another tenant to cover the rent. Remember, landlords are running a business and need to secure their income.
It is also your responsibility to help the landlord find a new tenant if you break the lease. Your landlord may view the request to end the contract more favorably if you have someone lined up to sublet or rent the apartment. You may even benefit from a reduction in the outstanding rent owed on the lease.
Negotiate with the landlord. If you have been a good tenant and are not late on rent, you could negotiate to forfeit the security deposit and paying only a portion of the outstanding rent. This comes down to what your lease says.
As you can see, breaking an apartment lease is not a straightforward process. Think carefully and always be honest with your landlord. They will appreciate it and you can prevent the negative consequences that come with ending a lease.