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MDLawyer, Lawyer
Category: Landlord-Tenant
Satisfied Customers: 6135
Experience:  10 years in legal practice. Over 5 years in advising clients on landlord/tenant issues, including on a pro bono basis.
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My daughter 27 yrs old from Florida signed a 1 yr lease in

Customer Question

My daughter 27 yrs old from Florida signed a 1 yr lease in Provo Utah for an apartment unseen starting sept 1 although a relative did view the apt and videoed it , when we arrived to Provo today we went and saw the aptment and did not like it . She already paid 800 for security deposit and 300 pet deposit , what can we do to get out of the contract ? Also name of good lawyer in Provo if necessary ?
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Landlord-Tenant
Expert:  MDLawyer replied 1 year ago.

Hello and thank you for using the Just Answer website. I look forward to assisting you this morning.

What does the lease state with respect to early termination?

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
No early termination clause only, termination,it is agreed that after the expectation of the base term this tenancy is terminated. Should tenant vacate prior to the expiration of said notice tenant agrees that said prior vacating shall in no way relieve the tenant from the obligation to pay rent and utilities for the entire notice period . Tenant must give a written 30 day notice .
My daughter hasn't moved in yet !
Expert:  MDLawyer replied 1 year ago.

Thank you for the additional information. Unfortunately, a contract becomes legally binding once it is signed. That means, that in order to be released from the contract, she would need to request that the landlord let her out of the lease. The landlord may agree since she has not even moved in. If the landlord does not agree, she would be responsible for the remainder of the lease up until the landlord obtains a new tenant for that unit. That is what the law refers to as the landlord's duty to mitigate damages. Another option, if the lease allows it, is that she could sublet the apartment. (Of course, if there was a safety or fraud issue with respect to entering the lease, there would be more options but it sounds like the situation is simply that she did not like the unit and that is not a legal reason upon which a tenant can terminate or void a lease without penalty or consequence)

With respect to the security deposit, the landlord does have to give that back to her if she officially lets them know that she intends on terminating her lease. If she sublets the apartment, she would not get the security deposit until after the sublettor has vacated the unit or the lease ends. The pet deposit would only be refundable to her if the lease states that it's a refundable deposit.

With respect to your last question, the website does not allow us experts to give specific referrals to customers of the Just Answer website. The Utah Bar Association does operate a lawyer referral service, however, if you are looking for a specific referral.

Please let me know if you need any clarification on anything I have said above.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
With respect to the security deposit, the landlord does have to give that back to her if she officially lets them know that she intends on terminating her lease???? But if she terminated the lease now , she still liable for the year rent , right ?
Expert:  MDLawyer replied 1 year ago.

Yes, the landlord has 30 days from the time that she terminates the lease to return her security deposit. However, a landlord in Utah does have the right to apply the security deposit to unpaid rent and so if she breaks the lease (i.e. without the landlord agreeing to release her from the lease), they would have the right to retain the deposit for rent owed.

Yes, if she breaks the lease, she would be liable for rent for the rest of the lease but the law imposes a duty to mitigate damages meaning that the landlord has to try to rent the unit out and once it has been rented out, she would no longer be liable.

Expert:  MDLawyer replied 1 year ago.

Please let me know if the above has answered your question or whether you need any additional information. Thank you in advance for your positive rating, if you do not have any further questions. Should you have any further question, please do not hesitate to let me know so that we may continue our conversation.

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