Breaking A Residential Lease

Full Video Transcript

If only an apartment lease could be as flexible as your social life. Whether you need to take a new job, are getting married, need to care for a sick relative or simply escape an unpleasant living situation, you may be trying to get out of the lease you signed several months ago. Can a lease broken? If your landlord is failing to live up to basic standards in providing amenities and maintaining the unit, then perhaps you can terminate the lease based on the landlord's failure to live up to his or her obligations. Check with your local housing office and tenants' rights groups for options that may be available to you. Document each shortcoming in every instance in which you complained. Sending certified letters to the landlord is also a good idea -- usually more effective than simply calling. Your worst option is to simply abandon the unit. Almost all leases provide that you are responsible for the rent until the end of the term, or at least until the landlord finds a new tenant. If you stop paying rent, expect a lawsuit and a black mark on your credit. Your best option maybe to talk with the landlord about your situation. You may be surprised how accommodating he or she may be. Also take some time to reread your lease carefully. It may include an escape clause that would allow you to break the lease with two months notice or allow you to sublet the unit. For more information about your rights, contact an attorney in your area today.

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