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Purchase/sale agreement necessary to break lease?

Tacoma, WA |

Our lease contract states we must provide a purchase/sale agreement on the purchase of our home to break lease. We gave notice and the p/s was never brought up. Now over two months later he says he can keep the deposit because he did not get this.

We did a walk through, LL had no complaints. He did say he wanted to make sure there were no outstanding utilities before refunding deposit. Three weeks go by we don't hear anything. He says it takes time for utilites to clear. We respond the utilities were taken care of, besides we had to pay utility co a deposit on move in. After this we receive a long rant about damages exceeding deposit, with bottom line being no p/s so we have no grounds to get our money back.

Attorney Answers 2


If this is a residential tenancy, under the Washington Residential Landlord Tenant Act, a deposit can only he held if a written condition report is provided at the time of move in. After you move out, the landlord has 14-days to either refund the deposit, provide an accounting and explanation for why any portion was retained, and could be liable for not doing so. The deposit may have to be refunded in full, and if the court decides the landlord willfully refused to refund your deposit, double the amount of the deposit may be awarded. You can also recover attorney's fees and costs. I am not sure without seeing the lease agreement what a purchase and sale agreement has to do with anything. There may be some enforceability issues here. You should consult an attorney about this and have the agreement thoroughly reviewed.

The foregoing is offered as general information only, and does not constitute legal advice. Please be advised you should consult a lawyer for advice specific to your situation.The foregoing should not be construed to establish an attorney client relationship.

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The clause states "tenant has option to break lease after six months for purpose of home purchase. In order to break lease, tenant should provide notice two months prior to move out date. In order for notice to be valid tenant shall provide a signed purchase and sale agreement within 30 days of giving notice. If agreementnot provided within time frame lease is considered to be in full force.


My colleague is correct. If you broke your lease and did not provide the purchase agreement then, security deposit issues aside, you may be liable for the rent due under the lease. Consult a local landlord/tenant attorney.

DISCLAIMER: Brandy A. Peeples is licensed to practice law in the State of Maryland. This answer is being provided for informational purposes only and the laws of your jurisdiction may differ. This answer based on general legal principles and is not intended for the purpose of providing specific legal advice or opinions. Under no circumstances does this answer constitute the establishment of an attorney-client relationship. For legal advice relating to your specific situation, I strongly urge you to consult with an attorney in your area. NO COMMUNICATIONS WITH ME ARE TO BE CONSTRUED AS ARISING FROM AN ATTORNEY-CLIENT RELATIONSHIP AND NO ATTORNEY-CLIENT RELATIONSHIP WILL BE ESTABLISHED WITH ME UNLESS I HAVE EXPRESSLY AGREED TO UNDERTAKE YOUR REPRESENTATION, WHICH INCLUDES THE EXECUTION OF A WRITTEN AGREEMENT OF RETAINER.

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