Trouble reading lease while landlord is there

Page 1 of 1 [ 6 posts ] 

against_the_clock
Raven
Raven

User avatar

Joined: 27 Nov 2010
Gender: Male
Posts: 109
Location: Louisville Kentucky (if you think I don't wear shoes I'll throw them at you)

25 Feb 2011, 8:14 am

Not really sure where this goes. But I noticed when I entered into this lease agreement I tried to read the lease right then and there when the land lord gave it to me. Now it appears I have missed some parts and may have misinterpreted others as well as forgotten to ask questions about some key points before signing it, due to the stress of reading it in front of someone. Recently I have wanted to move out early and break the lease. Here is the clause for that:

"SECTION 7: Tenant agrees to a fixed term contract of 12 months, beginning September 30th 2010. Should tenant need to vacate premises before the end of the fixed term, Tenant needs to notify the Manager with 30 days WRITTEN notice of intent to vacate and pay one-half the monthly rent to break the fixed term lease." (emphasis mine)

The section on the front page that refers to this is
"A 30 DAY WRITTEN notification is required to withdraw from the rental agreement. See section 7 in Terms of Agreement for early termination clause of fixed term lease agreement. Any tenant who vacates the premise without sufficient notice will be subject to forfeiture of deposit due to loss of rental income, and held responsible for all lost rent."

Now those are the only sections that refer to breaking the lease. I thought these meant that I would have to pay half of one month's rent to break the lease, and that I would get my security deposit back (since it says that without notification I would loose my deposit). But it seems like a rather good agreement compared to other types of leases which leads me to believe my landlord might have meant something else (didn't realize that before).

How do you think "pay one-half the monthly rent to break the fixed term lease. should be interpreted here?" And how should I ask him about this?

(I want to leave because I thought previously that I could have a roommate if I got his permission and that he would give me permission to do so, but he didn't give me permission because he said it was a one person apartment) (I didn't think this through well enough and forgot to ask him about it before hand) (I found a cheaper place to live now and want to move out)

Thanks for any advice.



jackbus01
Veteran
Veteran

User avatar

Joined: 5 Feb 2011
Age: 48
Gender: Male
Posts: 1,197

25 Feb 2011, 8:26 am

Lease Termination clauses are pretty standard. 30 day written notice is pretty standard.
There is always a lease termination fee when terminating your lease, in addition to rent.
Only 1/2 month, that is not very much, usually its 1-2 months.

The security deposit should (in theory) only cover damages on move out.
Why don't you ask your landlord.
Also when you sign a lease next time be very annoying and pedantic with the questions on every section.



against_the_clock
Raven
Raven

User avatar

Joined: 27 Nov 2010
Gender: Male
Posts: 109
Location: Louisville Kentucky (if you think I don't wear shoes I'll throw them at you)

25 Feb 2011, 8:33 am

Ok the term monthly rent is used elsewhere as:
"Monthly rent: [amount I pay each month]"

So yeah, I think it would just mean half of one months rent, which isn't very much. Let me know if you think otherwise. Thanks.

Quote:
Also when you sign a lease next time be very annoying and pedantic with the questions on every section.

Oh I will be more thorough next time. I was nervous and distracted this time.

Quote:
Why don't you ask your landlord.

I will, I just am worried about how to do it, I don't want to offend him but at the same time I don't want to get bullied. (maybe this is a little paranoid he seems really nice, except for not letting me have a roommate, which may have been for legit legal reasons, idk he didn't say)



sedjat
Blue Jay
Blue Jay

User avatar

Joined: 20 Feb 2010
Age: 39
Gender: Female
Posts: 76
Location: Chapel Hill, NC

25 Feb 2011, 12:44 pm

The one-half the monthly rent might actually mean that you have to pay half the monthly rent for the rest of your lease. For example, you have a lease for 12 months and decide to break the lease after 6 months. Then you would have to give 30 days notice and pay a penalty of 50% of the monthly rent for the remaining 6 months. You might check with a lawyer who actually knows something about your local rental laws to see what the lease actually requires you to do. Legal language can be somewhat tricky to correctly decipher, at times.

On the bright side, you should get the security deposit back as long as you leave the apartment in the same condition as it was at the start of your lease, and you if your landlord is a responsible person.



wefunction
Veteran
Veteran

User avatar

Joined: 4 Jan 2011
Age: 43
Gender: Female
Posts: 2,486

25 Feb 2011, 1:22 pm

I would start talking to your landlord immediately about this and ask questions. Say you breezed over it because you didn't anticipate not fulfilling your lease but now it appears you may have to so you want to work something out with him. The majority of the landlords I have known will work with tenants beyond the four corners of the document if it's a reasonable situation. People are people, after all. I find that what people appreciate the most is communication and honesty. So call your landlord right away.



against_the_clock
Raven
Raven

User avatar

Joined: 27 Nov 2010
Gender: Male
Posts: 109
Location: Louisville Kentucky (if you think I don't wear shoes I'll throw them at you)

26 Feb 2011, 8:48 am

Quote:
The one-half the monthly rent might actually mean that you have to pay half the monthly rent for the rest of your lease. For example, you have a lease for 12 months and decide to break the lease after 6 months.


I don't think it could mean that, because it would say "remaining rent", it wouldn't say monthly rent because that is rent per month. It has "monthly rent" elsewhere and has the amount I pay per a month next to it, so I don't think they would use the same term differently elsewhere. I pretty sure this is just a good deal and I was being paranoid, but I will post this on legal forums or ask a lawyer if I meet one.