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Can a NJ landlord break a lease with tenant?

Ridgewood, NJ |

I lease a condo to a tenant who has @ 10 moths left on the lease, but circumstances require me to move out of my current residence and I'd like to move back into the leased condo in the next few months. Can I break the lease with my tenant to move back in? If so how much advance notice is required and what are my next steps?

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Attorney answers 3


See NJSA 2A:18-61.1(h), which allows eviction of a tenant if a landlord intends to retire the leased premises from the market and use it for residential purposes. Be advised, there are some restrictions to this relief, see NJSA 2A:18-61.1b

Kindly note your tenant may still try to sue you for breach of contract.

The foregoing is not legal advice, and nothing in the foregoing shall be deemed to create an attorney client relationship. If you feel you need to speak with an attorney regarding your issue, it is recommended that you contact an attorney with expertise in your area of inquiry. The information related above is purely for informational purposes, and should not be acted upon without speaking with qualified counsel familiar with you specific situation and the laws related thereto.


In addition to the statutory authority cited by Mr. Keppler, I recommend a consultation with an attorney to review the law and to review the language of the lease you have regarding this condo.

You may also wish to consider giving your tenant a break on rent, or providing some other financial benefit to ease the pain of breaking a lease less than 2 months into its start. Remember, you tenant had to rent a moving van, hire movers, change his mailing address, change utilities, change his driver's license and credit card information. There's a lot involved with moving. Offering some financial incentive may ease your tenant's suffering and smooth your relations to prevent any possible suit by your tenant.

As in all cases, to answer this question as accurately as possible, I recommend a consultation with an attorney to review your lease, the specific facts of your case, and the applicable law. I wish you the best of luck.

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While the statute may permit you take possession after the lease there is nothing in the statutes that require the tenant to leave., If the tenant does not want to move before the end of the lease you cannot make s/he. You can payoff the tenant as there would be "damages" just as there would be if the tenant broke the lease. You need to negotiatie with the tenant.