Am I responsible for the remainder of my lease termif I move out early?

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Am I responsible for the remainder of my lease termif I move out early?

I can’t find anywhere in my lease where it states I am responsible for the remainder of my lease if I move before the lease is up. Usually is it spelled out clearly in the beginning with the dates but its not there. I did find an acceleration clause but I heard those are not legal in a residential lease. Can you help me?

Asked on July 31, 2011 Illinois

Answers:

S.L,. Member, California Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

If you do not give the required notice and move out early, you are liable for the rent for the balance of the term of the lease.  However, the landlord cannot allow your rental to remain vacant for the balance of the term of the lease.  The landlord has to mitigate (minimize) damages by making reasonable efforts to find a new tenant.  When the place is re-rented, your liability for the rent for the balance of the term of the lease ends.  What constitutes reasonable efforts on the part of the landlord to find a new tenant would depend on what other landlords in the vicinity are doing to attract tenants such as posting a sign, advertising in the newspaper, advertising in rental guides, etc.  If the landlord fails to mitigate (minimize) damages by making reasonable efforts to re-rent the place, the landlord's damages will be reduced accordingly.

S.L,. Member, California Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

If you do not give the required notice and move out early, you are liable for the rent for the balance of the term of the lease.  However, the landlord cannot allow your rental to remain vacant for the balance of the term of the lease.  The landlord has to mitigate (minimize) damages by making reasonable efforts to find a new tenant.  When the place is re-rented, your liability for the rent for the balance of the term of the lease ends.  What constitutes reasonable efforts on the part of the landlord to find a new tenant would depend on what other landlords in the vicinity are doing to attract tenants such as posting a sign, advertising in the newspaper, advertising in rental guides, etc.  If the landlord fails to mitigate (minimize) damages by making reasonable efforts to re-rent the place, the landlord's damages will be reduced accordingly.


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