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Tenant Broke Lease Verbally by David on August 24, 2018 @23:44

Tenant informed me two months ago they had to break the lease. I opted to put the house on the market and now have a contract pending. Tenant is now mad that they cannot use their security deposit to cover the one month rent penalty I offered her. By agreement I am entitled to the security deposit plus the remainder of the lease which is seven months at $1600.00. In Florida i am entitled to the full amount. I made a very nice generous offer which was initially verbally accepted.

Tenant now states that since they did not formally break the lease in writing, I am the one breaching the contract. She knows the closing is on sept 4th. She is now stating she will stay in the house and honor the lease. It might be a bluff but i know the reason she has to leave....but she knows i want to sell to avoid capital gains and i have to sell by dec.....her lease takes her into 2019. Easy way out is to forfeit 1600.00 dollars and get her to sign she will vacate by aug 31 so i can close on sept 4th....or postpone sale and hire a lawyer........any advice?
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Re: Tenant Broke Lease Verbally by Garry on August 25, 2018 @09:24 [ Reply ]
If your original lease was in writing, then any future changes to it , MUST ALSO be in writing if you expect any changes to be upheld by a judge. And even if it was an oral lease, the change you are talking about,( tenant moving out and LL selling the place) are MAJOR changes or possible lease violations, and should ALWAYS be in writing.

I believe the T is right, and that YOU messed up. You, acting upon what the T "said they might do in the future" you physically did something---- you put the place up for sale, and now have contract pending. The T has done nothing physical yet, meaning actually moving out.

If you want/NEED the sale to go thru, then you are going to have to give the T ANYTHING they want, if you want them to move. That may mean you give the T maybe $5,000 cash on Monday, to be out by Aug 31. (that amount gives them immediate cash, to be able to move all their stuff to a storage unit, and pay for a hotel for 2 months, while the look for a new place.)

Think of it this way-----if the new buyer "said" they were going to buy your place, would you believe them, (and act upon their "word only" if there were no WRITTEN offer (and acceptance) to do so?? Heck, no! You would say to yourself, I'll believe it when I see it-----IN WRITING! By the way, neither of you have broken the lease yet. The T has not moved out yet, and even if you sell your place on paper, the new buyer will still have to honor whatever lease is in effect on the day of sale. Then if the new buyer wants to move in, THEY would have to buy out THEIR new tenant to be able to do so. But you MUST disclose that to the new buyer, BEFORE you sign any sale papers.
Re: Tenant Broke Lease Verbally by AnonymousFL on August 25, 2018 @11:44 [ Reply ]
Unless you have an email or text to back up your stance that the tenant agreed to your 'lease break agreement', you don't have much ground to stand on. It would be your word against theirs when it went to court (and it likely would).

Like Gary said, any change to the lease agreed upon by landlord and tenant should be in writing. It protects and holds both sides to what was agreed upon.

You can still sell the house, but the lease goes with it. You may still find a taker. If you have a buyer that doesn't want the lease, you may actually have to offer the tenant a buy out option where you pay them money to end the lease early. In this instance, I am sorry to say that you really did make a mistake by not getting the details in writing. Take it as a lesson learned.
Re: Tenant Broke Lease Verbally by LAMAC66 on August 27, 2018 @07:35 [ Reply ]
Nothing in writing means nothing binding.

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