If Iam getting out of my upcoming lease, can my landlord charge me for June and July rent even thoughthey arefree?

UPDATED: Jul 20, 2010

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If Iam getting out of my upcoming lease, can my landlord charge me for June and July rent even thoughthey arefree?

My lease ended in May and I signed a new lease in November that would start in August. June and July rent is free. I then found a better place to live and my landlord agreed to let me out of my lease if I found someone to take it over, which I did. Now she is trying to get me to pay for June and July rent. Can she do that?

Asked on July 20, 2010 under Real Estate Law, Michigan


M.T.G., Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 12 years ago | Contributor

From the facts as you have laid them out here, no, she can not.  You have all the paperwork?  The signed leases, especially the one that says that June and July are free?  That is a contract made with you.  She has to abide by that.  The problem here that may arise is that I am fearful that your agreement with her was oral and not done in writing. Generally you can not orally alter a written contract.  Has the new party signed a lease agreement and have you voided your old agreement?  I would not make any waves here right now until you get all your ducks in a row.  Check to see that everything is in place for the new tenant and leave the place spotless.  Make sure that you do a walk through with the landlord before you leave (so that there is no issue with the security deposit being held) and take pictures of the place.  Ask your landlord to sign a paper stating that the apartment was broom clean and that there are no issues regarding its being left in good condition absent normal wear and tear.  Good luck.

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