Under What Circumstances Can You Break a Lease


November 30, 2018

As a landlord, most of the time you rely on your lease agreement. You use it to protect you and your property. There will be times when you have to consider breaking a lease agreement. Sometimes it’s to protect your property. Sometimes it’s to ensure you don’t lose out on any money. Below we explain when breaking a lease is necessary. Also, how to protect your business with a good understanding of lease types and terms.

Breaking the lease

Landlords don’t have to worry about breaking a lease at all if it’s drawn up properly. That’s because the tenant will be the one who breaks the lease. This can happen by not making payments, damaging the property, etc. To ensure that a tenant maintains desirable living conditions, have a legal professional help. They can draw up a lease for your property. Work with these experts to understand all the terms of your lease agreement. Then, rely on that same agreement when a tenant contradicts the outlined terms.

Breaking the law

man standing with hands handcuffed and police lights in front

If you have a tenant living in your property that breaks the law, you are able to break the lease. For instance, tenants selling drugs out of your property can be legally kicked out of the property. Do you think that a tenant might be breaking the law? It’s important to look into it right away. Find out whether you are capable of removing the tenant.

Late rent

One main reason that a landlord would break a lease agreement is that tenants aren’t paying rent. Normally, there is a statement built into the lease that covers how long a tenant can be late on their payments. This is a very important clause to put into any lease agreement. Even if it isn’t there, it’s still possible to break a lease if the tenant isn’t paying rent. After a few months of non-payment, breaking a lease is possible and the tenant can be kicked out.

Serious property damage

Breaking a lease is possible when the tenant is doing serious damage to your property. Water, wall, and floor damage could all be grounds for breaking a lease agreement. If you encounter any of these, start the process to remove the destructive tenant. The circumstances vary depending on the state that you are operating in, but generally, if the tenant is doing significant damage to your property you can break the lease and begin the process to kick them out.

Sending a warning or asking them to leave

Once you realize that breaking a lease is a legal possibility for you, you can proceed in a few different ways. You can ask the tenant to leave immediately and hope that they will move out. If you want to give them another chance you can send out a warning and see if they correct the problem. If neither of those two options works, you will have to begin the eviction process and start working on legally removing the tenant from your property.

Beginning the eviction process

man stands holding a couch with cardboard packing boxes in the background in the process of moving out or being evicted

It’s always best to ask a tenant to move out of your property and to hope that they will actually find a new place to live on their own, but that doesn’t always go according to plan. Many tenants will refuse to move out when you ask them to do so. When this happens, you will have to go through the eviction process to get them to move out. To begin an eviction you have to file legal forms with the county telling them why you are evicting the tenant. From there the eviction becomes a legal matter that will go to court. Head to court and get the eviction order approved and the tenant will be kicked out of your property legally. They will have a specific period of time to leave your property, and once they are gone you can start repairs and getting your property ready for the next tenant.

Breaking a lease is something that most landlords will want to avoid whenever possible, but there are certain situations that require you to do just that. It’s important for you to understand when those situations occur and what you should do if you need to break a lease agreement. Take the time to learn the property laws in your area to make sure you have the tools to take action when tenants start harming your business.

Alternatively, you can hire Blueground or another similar property management company to look after your properties for you. We specialize in every task that’s required to successfully maintain a property for rent. We will handle finding tenants, managing maintenance tasks, furnishing the property and even evicting tenants if doing so becomes necessary. It means less work and stress on your end so you can start enjoying being a landlord like never before.


United States