Under normal circumstances a lease ends in a fixed lease agreement with the end date of that lease period. In a rental agreement that is month-to-month, a lease usually gets ended by either party giving termination notice under a state-by-state defined termination period. Breaking a lease is less typical, but below you can read under which circumstances a lease can be broken by tenant or landlord:

When Can a Tenant Break a Lease?

Unless the landlord breaks the law and violates the terms of your lease, a tenant is bound to the length of the lease. Examples of landlord term violation include: failing to comply with lease clauses, failing to make necessary repairs, or failing to implement health and safety regulatory measures. One exception, as stated in federal law, and some state laws, is for anyone entering active military service or government related positions, to break leases early without consequences.

When a Tenant Breaks a Lease:

Legally, a tenant who breaks a lease is responsible for the remaining rent under the lease term. However, it is important to note that landlords are also legally subject to put reasonable effort into finding a new tenant to fulfill the now vacant space, instead of charging the tenant for the remainder of the rent.

When Can a Landlord Break a Lease?

As with tenants, landlords are legally allowed to terminate leases if part(s) of a lease has be violated. This could include major damage to property, subletting when it is not permitted, or late rent payments.

When a Landlord Breaks a Lease:

To terminate the lease, the landlord must provide sufficient notice to the tenant regarding the reason of termination. The landlord must look at their state’s detailed laws surrounding how to write and deliver a termination notice. Landlords can either request the tenant to leave within a set number of days, or they may inform the tenant of the wrongdoing and provide a warning, yet notifying the tenant of lease termination if the problem is not resolved. In some cases, tenants do not comply with the termination notice. In this situation, landlords may file a lawsuit to evict the tenant.

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