My question involves landlord-tenant law in the State of: Pennsylvania.
I rent an apartment in center city Philadelphia. I took the apartment because I was expecting to get a ride into work with a colleague living on the same street. The guy quit his job 3 days after I signed a 12-month lease and did not tell me even a day sooner.
Long story short, now I have to do the driving myself, a situation I would like to get out of. So I need to break my lease. Are there any resources that I might avail of to help me? I am not rich enough to just pay the rest of the year’s rent and move out. I am thinking of talking to my landlord to see if I can get out in a more agreeable way. He seemed nice before I rented, but I expect him to try to extract every pound of flesh he can. There is nothing really wrong with the apartment that I can show in my defense (we have been extremely good residents too). We started the lease in July 08.
Just FYI, below 12 A-K are the clauses in the lease that specify the terms of breaking a lease. Do I have any chance of getting out at all?
Thanks in advance to all who can help, Jack.
“12. VIOLATION COSTS:
If the Tenant does any of the following, he/she will have violated the Lease:
A. Does not pay the full amount of rent when due;
B. Fails to perform any term of this Lease;
C. Vacates the apartment or shows intent to vacate the apartment before the end of the Lease term; or
D. Vacates the apartment or shows intent to vacate the apartment before the end of any extension of the Lease term.
If the Tenant violates the Lease by doing any of the above, the Tenant will pay all of the following items:
E. All rent due until the end of the Lease term, or until the end of any extension of the Lease term. If the apartment is re-leased, the original Tenant will not have to pay rent beyond the starting date of the new Lease;
F. The full cost of repainting;
G. The cost of advertising;
H. A re-rental fee equal to half of one month's rent;
I. All legal fees, court costs, collection agency fees, sheriffs or constable's Tees, moving and storage costs and other expenses of the Landlord in evicting the Tenant and collecting the money the Tenant owes;
J. The cost of repairing or replacing any damage to the apartment and complex for which the Tenant is legally
K. It is recognized by both parties that (1) Landlord is not interested in, nor set up to handle, short-term leases and would reject an application for a short-term lease and (2) short-term occupancies incur added expenses on the Landlord and extra time for the staff, time and expense which may not be covered in the above-listed charges, and that such expenses can be significant, yet difficult to quantify. Consequently, should Tenant fail to fulfill the obligations of the initial lease term, Tenant agrees to pay, in addition to those charges listed above in Clause 12 (E) through (J), an amount equal to Twenty Percent (20%) of the balance of rent due for the initial lease term with a minimum charge equal to one month's rent. “