What to do if I’m in a residential lease and need to break it due to a job relocation?

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What to do if I’m in a residential lease and need to break it due to a job relocation?

Landlord had 90 days notice and he wants to keep deposit and an additional 2 month’s rent once we have moved out. He has never tried to advertise property to re lease it. Can he expect $3000 additional rent or is this legal or worth fighting for?

Asked on November 5, 2012 under Real Estate Law, Missouri

Answers:

FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 8 years ago | Contributor

Under the laws of all states in this country if you have a long term lease with tome remaining on it, you are obligated to honor its terms. If you need to relocate then you should consider sub-leasing out the unit to a third person for the balance of time under the lease.

Another option is to pay some semblance of a buy out agreement to your landlord for a full release of the balance of your contractual obligations to him or her. Even if you simply move out and do not pay for the balancxe of your lease subjecting you to a breach of contract action by the landlord, the landlord has an afformative obligation to mitigate his or her damages by renting out the unit. If the landlord rents out the unit for equal or more that what your rent is, then the landlord really does not have any damages to complain about even if you breach the lease and refuse to pay for the balance of its term due to your intent to relocate.

I would contest the additional $3,000 in rent. The last thing that you want to do is pay the $3,000 to the landlord and then the landlord rents out the unit some other person for the balance of your term of lease where the landlord makes double rent.


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