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Experience:  8+ years in handling Leases, Landlord-Tenant, Foreclosures,Mortgages, and Eviction cases
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Florida Rental lease. How to break it legally? Would a video

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Florida Rental lease. How to break it legally? Would a video of leaking rain water through roof into apt help with it? I have 5 month old infant. I want to leave this place asap without paying any penalties. Thanks
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Real Estate Law
Expert:  RealEstateAnswer replied 1 year ago.
Hi! I will be the professional that will be helping you today. I look forward to providing you with information to help solve your problem.

Good afternoon. I certainly understand the situation and your concern. Would you mind sharing with me the reason you want to break the lease? Also, have you informed the landlord in writing, as to the condition with the roof and it leaking?
Customer: replied 1 year ago.

I want to move back due to job relocation, but that is not enough for the landlord. Yes i have informed him of that and he fixed it. Problem is that i used to work as a plumber, and based on my experience, I suspect mold being formed in the crawl space ( between my ceiling and roof). Roof only leaked becasue of abundance of strong and heavy rainfall, meaning roof mustve been leaking with small rain aswell, but it didnt collect enough water to seep through the sheetrock of my ceiling. until this big rainfall.


 

Customer: replied 1 year ago.

I politely told them that i have a video of the rain water getting through the soffit and sliding door header into my apt. and i didnt wanted to create any hassle, al li want is to move out. I only have 2 months left on the lease. All my monthly rent has been paid on time.

Expert:  RealEstateAnswer replied 1 year ago.
Thank you for the additional information. If the problem was corrected, then the landlord would have complied with his responsibility under the law and that alone, would not give you a legal right to just break the lease. Now, if you suspect that mold is growing and it can cause harm to you and the baby, that is a different story. However, you would need to bring that to the attention of the landlord and allow him to inspect and determine if it is an issue and it is needs to be corrected. Again, if the landlord does this, you would still be bound by the lease agreement. In a situation like yours, a tenant can often negotiate with the landlord, to pay a penalty to terminate the lease early. Another option is to find someone to sublease the property, for the remainder of the lease term. If you have an issue with the rain water, you can certainly use that as leverage to try and walk away, without any problems but the landlord does have a legal right to correct it, if he desires. If the landlord refused to fix anything and the rain water was causing a problem, then you could have a legal right to vacate, upon giving proper notice, which would provide you with a legal defense, if he were to try and sue you.

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Customer: replied 1 year ago.

Not really the answer i was looking for. Given the option to the landlord to "inspect" for mold, doesnt give me the comfort. He could lie. And i wont know about it just so that he could keep me here longer. Theres absolutely nothing else a tenant could do to get out of the lease? What would happen if i was just to move out and break the lease? i know somewhat my credit history would be affected? anything else?Not counting this coming month I have one more month to pay/end lease.

Expert:  RealEstateAnswer replied 1 year ago.
You have every legal right to conduct your own inspection or bring in your own inspector, to determine if there is a mold problem. Moreover, you can be present when the landlord inspect for the mold, to determine if there is a problem. All these options would overcome him lying and reassure you that there is no a mold problem. Aside from coming to an agreement with the landlord and paying a penalty to break the lease early or finding a tenant to move in to take over, there is nothing legally you can do, to break it, unless the lease states with notice, it can be terminated by either party. If you just move out, the landlord would then have a legal obligation to mitigate any damages and find a new tenant. He could then decide to go after you and sue, for any damages suffered, as a result of the lease being broken early and without a legal basis to support it. If you only have one more month, you can see if the landlord would accept 1/2 the rent if you vacate early, to allow him additional time to find a new tenant and he could benefit from getting someone in sooner, since they would be paying the full rent and the landlord agreed to accept your half rent.
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