Roger : Hi - my name is XXXXX XXXXX I'm a Real Estate litigation attorney. Thanks for your question. I'll be glad to assist.
Roger : Generally, what your management company has told you is true - - that you would be responsible for the rent until the property is re-rented by a new tenant.
Roger : However, if you can find some term of the lease that the landlord is in default of, that would give you grounds to cancel the lease and terminate the agreement without legal exposure or liability.
Roger : The fact that the neighborhood is not safe isn't grounds to cancel as that's not something that the landlord can guarantee or do anything about.
Understood, Giving a key to the next door neighbor with out notification to us fall under that?
Roger : That's my next comment.....
Roger : If the landlord gave a key to your neighbor, that is a breach of your privacy and also likely is a breach of your right to quiet enjoyment of the property - - which is an inherent obligation that the landlord must provide.
Roger : Also, the landlord has an obligation to provide you a safe place as far as it is in his control. Giving out a key to someone without your permission and without any obvious/reasonable cause would certainly be a good thing to claim as a breach.
Roger : Also, if there is a property management company, it may be that the place can be re-rented very fast, so there'd be no real penalty about leaving early - - even if you don't have a legitimate reason. That may be something you want to inquire about before proceeding.
ok great, that was in the letter that we wrote, what should our next step be because we cant take the risk of paying rent on two homes.
Roger : It would be a very good idea to review the lease and see what it says about default/breach by the landlord, the notice required (notice to cure the breach/default) and follow those procedures.
Hire an attorney and build a case?
Roger : Before hiring an attorney, try to discuss the issues with the landlord, the breaches by the landlord, and try to get the landlord to just allow you to walk away.
Roger : IF that doesn't work, then the next step would be to consult a local attorney to review the lease and prepare a case to prove that the lease has been breached and should be cancelled.
thank you so much this has been extremely helpful
Roger : Sure. Glad to help.
Roger : If you need anything further, please let me know.