Are there other ways to break my lease?

I needed to break my lease at a house with 2 other roommates, a second
roommate also needed to break their lease. The landlord said as long as we
find suitable replacements for the lease we would not be responsible for the
remainder of the lease. We found 2 replacements, 1 of the replacements
backed out at the last second. My landlord is leaving the country for 3
months and said I can’t find a replacement until he gets back. Is there
anything I can do?

Asked on May 28, 2016 under Real Estate Law, Massachusetts


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 4 years ago | Contributor

If the landlord is fulfiling his responsibilities--i.e. is providing you a habitable unit and allowing you the "quiet enjoyment" of it--then there are no grounds to legally break a lease unless--
1) If it's a written lease for  definite term (e.g. a one-year lease), the lease itself contains some clause or provision allowing you to terminate the lease early, and you comply with the terms of that clause; or
2) If it is a written month-to-month lease or an oral lease (which is always month-to-month), you give give 30 days notice that you are terminating.
Othewise, you will be obligated to the lease for its full remaining duration.

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