Breaking A Lease
A lease is a contract between
you and the Landlord that you will rent a property for a certain amount of
Common leases are for 6 months
or 1 year.
If you move out before the
lease is up, you are breaking the lease. You can expect the Landlord to
pursue you for lost rent, advertising costs, damages, etc.
The term 'lease' is not used
in the Residential Tenancy Act. A lease is the same as a "fixed-term
tenancy" which is what The Act calls it.
This is what the Residential
Tenancy Guide states:
"A tenant who ends a fixed-term tenancy early
without the Landlordís agreement can be held accountable for any loss
incurred by the landlord, such as rent or advertising costs to re-rent the
unit. The Landlord is obliged to limit any potential loss by actively
trying to rent the unit."
Tips when trying to break a
If you are a Tenant who is
trying to break a lease, you should give your Landlord as much notice as
possible. Explain your reasons and be honest. Try to
understand the situation from your Landlord's point of view. He or
she relies on the rental income to pay the mortgage, and they are being
told that you plan to stop paying him/her that income. It would
probably be good to offer your help to the Landlord in finding a new
Tenant. Most of the time, if you were a good Tenant and the Landlord
believes that the property will easily rent out again, you should be okay.
However, if your Landlord has trouble finding a tenant to take over
immediately, or if your Landlord loses any rent during the remainder of
your lease term, you may be responsible for paying the difference.