If you know that the apartment reviews you would write about your current living space would be atrocious, it’s time to consider moving. Or maybe you would offer glowing apartment reviews, but you need to move out for other reasons, like getting married, relocating for a new job, or having lost your job. There are some ways to break a lease. However, if you decide to do so, tread carefully. There can be serious legal ramifications if you don’t have a justifiable reason or you go about it the wrong way. Also, remember that what is acceptable in one state or apartment may not be acceptable in another. Look up your local legal aid office and your tenants’ rights organization so you are clear about your options.
The possibility of paying a penalty for breaking your lease depends on the circumstances under which you want to break your lease and the severity of those circumstances. Here are a few reasons you may be able to legally break a lease with a small or no penalty.
Your apartment has suffered serious damage.
If this damage has made the apartment uninhabitable, was caused through no fault of yours, and has not been fixed by the landlord, you may be able to break your lease.
You need to move due to poor health.
In some places, if you become seriously ill or injured and need to move (for example to an assisted living facility) you can break your lease without penalty.
Your landlord fails to maintain the apartment.
This complaint must be well-documented, and you must have tried multiple times to address maintenance or other issues with your landlord. If you are building a case, it may even be helpful to check the apartment reviews of your property to find out if other tenants have had similar problems.
Your landlord interferes with your “quiet enjoyment” of or your privacy in the apartment.
If your landlord refuses to intervene on your behalf after repeated noise complaints or interferes with your right to peace and quiet, clean premises, and basic services, you may be able to break your lease. As with the failure to maintain mentioned above, you should keep a good record of your complaints.
Note that even the above reasons don’t mean that you can move out at any time. Generally you are required to give your landlord written notice so that he or she has an opportunity to correct the situation. If all else fails, talk to your landlord about breaking your lease. If you have been a responsible tenant in the past but foresee trouble making rent payments in the future, appeal to your landlord and suggest that you find a qualified replacement tenant. If you absolutely have to move out but would rather not break your lease, consider subleasing your apartment with the consent of your landlord.
Finally, before you break your lease and move, be sure to read over a variety of apartment reviews to help you choose a more suitable location. Taking advantage of apartment reviews can help you avoid ending up in another negative situation.