Thank you for the additional information. Normal, for a rental agreement, the landlord does have a legal obligation to try and mitigate damages, by finding a new tenant to take possession
. This is typically the case when a tenant vacates and fails to pay rent and the lease
is for a year. In this case, the rental is short term, the cost was paid ahead of time, as it is a vacation rental AND the renter departed early, on their own. They were not forced and had every legal right to stay until the rental time was up. If they vacated and you had notice, you have a right to re-rent the subject property, as there is no reason for it to sit idle. Her actions would indicate an intent to forfeit the money paid ahead of time. For her to come back and say you owe her a refund after she decided on her own to leave, without cause, is certainly going to be a tough argument to win. Your contract does state the terms and conditions upon when a refund will be given but at the same time, you can always argue that she left on her own. She was not forced and as a result, you should not have to provide her with a refund. You certainly want to defend the lawsuit, rely on the contract which she signed as well as harp on the fact that she decided to leave. The money was paid up front and likely non-refundable, which she was aware of. Knowing this, she should have not left or in the alternative, found someone on her own to take over and pay her for the time remaining.
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