How can we end out lease if we have rising rent but declining revenue?

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How can we end out lease if we have rising rent but declining revenue?

We have been operating restaurant for past 4 years in a strip center. Our rent went from 6k to almost 8k this year while our revenue declined from approximately 45k per month to 26-28k now. The landlord Publix opened 2 more restaurants in our vicinity which obviously added to our lost revenue. Also, the landlord, a grocery chain, came out with very aggressive pricing on their deli items. Our lease will expire in 2 years. How can we get out of it now? We already asked for rent reduction last year and were declined. We can’t go on at this pace anymore. Last year we had to use money from our retirement savings and maxed out our business credit card just to pay the bills. Now we have same problem plus tax bill for taxes and early withdrawal penalty.

Asked on April 17, 2019 under Real Estate Law, Florida

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 2 years ago | Contributor

Unfortunately, negative changes in your financial situation are NOT legal grounds to terminate a lease early. It is also not grounds that your landlord is effectively competing with you, unless the lease itself had some clause preventing them from doing what they are doing. (If it did, then their breach of that clause would be a "material," or important, lease violation which would allow you to treat the lease as terminated and end it early.)
Once you sign a lease, you are obligated for its full duration unless there is some early termination clause in the lease, with which you fully comply, or unless, as mentioned above, the landlord breaches or violates the lease in a material way. If those do not apply, you will not be able to get out of the lease early.


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