Cancel rental agreement

By Vera Z

I am in a 12 month contract with an appartment complex. We signed into the lease on Aug 28, 2008. We are in the process of buying a house and need to break our contract at the end of the month of Feb. According to our contract, if we break the lease 6 months or more into the contract, we have to pay $1400 penalty fee. If we however break the contract lesst than 6 months into the lease, we have to pay double $2800. My thinking that after Feb 28th, we have stayed at our appartment for 6 months, so we will pay the $1400 for breaking the lease. The manager at the appartment tells me that in fact we have to stay through the end of March in order not to pay the double penalty. This makes no sense to me. If we stay through the end of march, it means we would have stayed there for 7 months. Can somebody tell me at which point in our contract is it considered that we have 6 or less months left on the lease?

Thanks! Vera

Edited on: Thursday, January 8th, 2009 12:48 pm

3 Responses to “Cancel rental agreement”

My response: (We welcome stories, examples, explanations, answers and a touch of your personality)


January 8th, 2009 9:36 pm

Think of it like this…
When you give notice that you will be terminating your agreement on the 28th of Feburary you are actually terminating the lease at 5 months, even though you are staying until the 6 month mark. So in order to “Terminate” the agreement with the required 6 months, you would need to give your 30 day termination notice no later than after you have stayed there for at least 6 months.
Hope that makes better sense. Sometimes these lease agreements and rent contracts are written so poorly that it allows for legal grey area.


January 9th, 2009 7:36 am

I would agree with what the Utah landlord said, but still it is a techincality. If it is not clearly written within the lease contract, then it is up for dispute. Have you considered landlord mediation? If you file a complaint with the RPA they will mediate to see that your renter rights are not being violated– and the best part is that it gets attached to their landlord risk report… That gives them incentive to work with the agent assigned to the case.
Here’s the form to file a complaint: I seggest you seriously file a complaint against them, it will be well worth the $35 filing fee.
Good Luck!

Candalyn :)


January 9th, 2009 9:54 pm

Leases are tough to break! You will definetly need help, unless you want to get stuck paying the lease termination fee set by your rental property.


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