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13 Steps to Investing Foolishly / The Renters' Corner


Subject:  Breaking a lease Date:  10/22/2002  4:26 PM
Author:  stan002 Number:  166 of 182

My lease contract stipulates a $1500 lease breaking fee, plus return of all rent incentives. The "market rate" rent on the apartment is $990 per month, but we have been getting a $200 incentive per month making the rent $790. The whole "market rate" thing seems like baloney to me - if the market could support a rent of $990, then they wouldn't have had to add "incentives" to get the place rented out!

But anyways - We have been here for 3 months and we might have to move out because of a job relocation. Is there some law in washington state that restricts their lease breaking fees to the costs of restoring the apartment to a showable state, plus lost rent until someone new moves in? Are they required to offer the place for the $790 they are renting it to me at? I am sure that the place could be rented out in less than a month, as it is very close to a major employer. Perhaps I could attempt to get them to let me sublet the place? Any other ideas on how to minimize this fee, which is far more than the actual cost of us moving out early?

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