I broke my lease. When I asked the manager about options to leave the apartment, she told: "Option one – you find someone to take over the lease for you. Option two – I am placing the apartment on the market... When the new tenant moves in, you will no longer be liable for the rent... I am confident that the apartment will rent within the next two week..." I chose number 2 and, after 5 months the apartment hasn't been rented... In my lease there was another option that the manager didn't told me on her email: possibility of paying a termination charge... I asked her now if I can benefit about this other option, but she told me NOT, "that decision must be made before keys are turned in". Since I wasn't informed about this "option", do I have any chance to pay early termination fees?
Most likely, yes. You are charged under the law of knowing what is in your own lease agreement. Also, the manager was wrong about you not being liable if they rent the lease before your lease expires. A landlord may hold you accountable for any costs to lease the premised and any difference in what you were paying and what he was able to lease it for at the end of your lease term. If there was an option to terminate and be relieved of any potential liability for the balance of your lease term and the balance was long enough to make it valuable, then it was something to consider. You might have a chance of still getting the termination option if you write a formal letter, certified, return receipt, advising that she failed to provide you with that option and asserting that you are considering an action for breach of contract, negligent misrepresentation, fraud, etc. Frankly, I don't think these are great causes of action but it might cause the landlord to reconsider whether to just work it out with you so that you can be out with peace of mind.
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Landlord / Tenant Lawyer
It is the Landlord's option to include the early termination / liquidated damages clause on the written lease agreement. Then, it is the tenant's option to choose to take it or not to take it. look at your lease agreement. Did you check off the box or initial beside the option to lock in to the early termination /ld option? or did you check off the box / initial NOT to lock in the option?
If you did choose to lock in the early termination /ld option, then the manager was not right to ignore that option.
You probably should go see an attorney so he/she can review the paperwork and advise you further.
The terms of the written contract will prevail. However, I would definately get an attorney involved in order to negotiate the terms of your termination with her so that you can have a dignified and less expensive exit. Good luck