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RealEstateAnswer
RealEstateAnswer, Lawyer
Category: Real Estate Law
Satisfied Customers: 23970
Experience:  9+ years in handling Leases, Landlord-Tenant, Foreclosures,Mortgages, and Eviction cases
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I currently am leasing a home in Arizona. Due to changes in

Customer Question

I currently am leasing a home in Arizona. Due to changes in my husbands job, we are forced to move to Texas. I notified my landlord that the lease is being broken and last month (May), I paid extra toward Junes rent. So my landlord has $525 of Junes rent which is $1025. Now that I have told them we are moving, the are refusing to keep the $525 and are demanding the entire $1025 plus late fees to be paid or eviction will occur.
The $525 has been in their account since Mid May.
Can they return the $525 stating they did not agree to a partial payment of rent, even after 3 weeks of accepting it? Can they return it and then charge late fees?
They also have $1500 security deposit. Can that be applied to rent or fees?
And lastly, they are demanding, per lease, that I pay a 2 month lease break. Can they do that and rerent the property?
Thank you
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 morning. I certainly understand the situation and your concern. Did they agree to accept the $525 and allow partial sent to be paid, if you were not staying for the entire month of June. I just want to get an understanding of the time line and if you took it upon yourself to pro rate the rent or they agreed?
Customer: replied 1 year ago.

Hi

When I paid May's rent, I had the extra money and wanted to pay it toward June's rent. I do a direct deposit and so it was paid directly in to their account and notated that it was to be applied toward Junes rent.

At that time, I did not know that I was moving.

Expert:  RealEstateAnswer replied 1 year ago.
Thank you for the additional information. Yes, if it was not agreed upon and disclosed that you would only be making a partial payment and not the full amount owed, they could refuse it. After all, if they allow you to apply extra money to the next months rent, it is under the belief that the balance would be paid when do. Now, if you are vacating, then you would be in breach of the lease agreement. If they want to evict you, they would need to give yo the proper notice to cure and if it is not done, can proceed with the eviction. If the lease agreement allows and you agreed when signed, to pay 2 months of rent for breaking the lease early, then it needs to be paid. They would then have to come in and try and find a new tenant, along with fix up the rental to get it habitable for the next tenant. Your security deposit should first be applied to any damage or repairs which need to be fixed. If there is a balance, you can then tell them to apply it to the owed amount and pay the balance. At the end of the day, the lease was broken early and you would be liable to them for damages and cost. If you are still in possession of the rental, the rent needs to be paid, for the month of June.
Expert:  RealEstateAnswer replied 1 year ago.
I just wanted to follow up and see if you had any other questions or needed me to clarify something. I am here to help, so please let me know. Thanks!
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I guess what I don't understand is they currently have $2025 of my money.
$525 of June rent and $1500 security deposit.
I've only been in the home 3 months. It's been cleaned, landscape trimmed and emptied of all trash. The paint was new when I moved in and we never got anything hung on the walls. So paint is still perfect.
There would be no reason for them to apply the sec deposit to cleaning.
I spoke to them and suggested we do a joint move out walk through, so they can see that the property is in super condition and at that point I suggested they keep the $2025 to apply towards rent owed and the lease break fees.
They are refusing to do that. I received a Lease Termination today via certified mail with additional charges of 250.00, 25.00 per day for 6/1-6/10
And notice that says the 5 days began the day the mailed it. Sorry so lengthy but
Why not keep the overpay and sec deposit to apply to rent and fees?
If they collect the 2 months of rent as the default (July, Aug),
can they re rent it and collect rent again on it for those months?
Thx
Expert:  RealEstateAnswer replied 1 year ago.
It appears they want to go through the lease termination and eviction process as needed and unless you pay the 2 months rent to break it, they will do so. While I 100% believe that the rental is in move out condition and will be left in the same condition as when you took possession, they will assess that after you actually vacate. Now, they can take the deposits and apply it to the damages suffered, as unpaid rent and then sue for the difference. It appears also that the 2 months rent as default is something you need to pay ahead of time, up front and then once you vacate and they inspect the rental, would return the balance owed. As such, if you pay the 2 months for July and August and the balance which they seek for June, then your deposit should be returned. Now, the 2 months is a fee to break it and get out, so they would need to start finding a new tenant. Both parties take a risk by agreeing to this, since the rental may sit idle for longer then 2 months or if you vacated and found a tenant or they found one quicker, could only result in the rental being vacant for 1 month.

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