Over 2013 the median residential rental price in Perth fell by $10 to $460 dollars per week. Many renters see reductions like this as an opportunity to snap up a bargain and move into rental homes that were previously unaffordable.
However, in order to take advantage of reduced weekly residential rentals, tenants may need to break their current lease and this can come with hidden costs.
Are you a tenant and looking to break your current lease?
A residential tenancy agreement is a legal contract. This means the lessor (the owner of the rental property) is entitled to be in a financial position that is no worse than he/she would have been had you not broken the lease.
What type of lease do I have?
There are two main types of residential lease – a Periodic Lease and a Fixed Term Lease.
A Periodic Lease is a short term lease. It usually requires the tenant to give a minimum of 21 days notice in writing to the manager or landlord stating their intention to terminate the lease.
A fixed term lease is a longer lease, usually 6 – 12 months. It may be ended prior to the end of the fixed term by written agreement signed by the tenant and the lessor. If you do break the lease for any reason, you are legally obliged to continue paying rent until the end of the fixed term unless you are able to find a new tenant.
What is the cost?
Unless a new tenant is able to move in immediately after you vacate, at no cost to the lessor, then the lessor may be able to seek reimbursement from you for costs incurred. These costs can include but are not limited to:
- Advertising costs to find a new tenant;
- Any fees that are payable to the real estate agent;
- Any loss of rent arising from the property being unoccupied.
It is important to be aware of the conditions in your lease agreement and to seek appropriate financial and legal advice.
This is general information only, and does not constitute specific legal advice. If you would like further information in relation to this matter or other legal matters please contact our office at firstname.lastname@example.org or call us on 1800 609 945.