Can You Break a Lease Due to Neighbor Harassment?
When there are problems with the property you are renting, the easiest solution may seem to be breaking the lease and moving out. However, because a lease is a contract, you could face serious consequences for breaking your lease, whether you are or because of some other issue.
Before you decide you want to break a lease, it is important to understand your rights as a tenant in the state where you live, in case your specific issue may be protected by state law. If you are ready to get started on the process of breaking your lease, DoNotPay can help you out.
When Breaking a Lease Is Justified
Every state has a list of reasons that a renter can break a lease without repercussions. Some of these reasons include:
Active Military Service
Anyone who works as an active-duty service member can break a lease whenever their orders require them to relocate someplace else.
Most states have housing codes that allow a victim of domestic violence to move out of a rental property in order to maintain their safety.
Landlord's Neglect of a Property
If the landlord is neglecting a property to the point where it is a health and safety issue, a tenant has the right to break a lease if the issues are not repaired in a timely manner.
Reasons You Cannot Break a Lease
Most states only allow a few reasons for a tenant to break a lease without penalties. Some of the most common reasons that people try to break a lease but are not generally considered sufficient include:
- Unhappy with your neighbors (without behavior classified as harassment)
- Wanting to move someplace else
- Getting married and wanting to move out
- Wanting to leave to not have to pay rent any longer
Rules for Breaking a Lease Because of Neighbor Harassment
Neighbor harassment isn't always covered by the codes and regulations for tenants in every state. However, if the situation has escalated to a point where you are suffering physical harm or the property you are renting is suffering damage due to the harassment, you may have a good case to break your lease.
Even if the situation is not protected in your state, you may be able to have a discussion with your landlord to see what steps you can take next. If the harassment is serious, law enforcement may also need to get involved to remedy the situation. If these actions do not work, you may face termination fees, forfeiture of your security deposit, and credit damage to be able to break your lease.
Understanding the Rules for Breaking Leases by State
Not every state allows tenants to break a lease for harassment from neighbors. It is important to check with your state's rules and regulations on renting before you try to break your lease:
How to Break Your Lease on Your Own After Facing Neighbor Harassment
Because a lease is a legal contract, it isn't always easy to break a lease, even when faced with a scary situation like neighbor harassment. However, you can take some steps on your own to try and get out of a lease when you feel that the situation you are living in isn't right and could be harmful to yourself and your family. These steps include:
- Talk to Your Landlord: Your first step is to bring any issues to your landlord. They may have the ability to help. In cases where neighbors are the issue, the landlord may be able to have a conversation with the neighbors to straighten out the situation.
- Collect Evidence: If the situation with your neighbors is becoming an issue that is putting you in harm's way, it is important to have the evidence ready to show your landlord or law enforcement so that you can create a case for breaking your lease. Evidence may include a police report, threatening messages, notes, or surveillance, as well as any property damage or other damage sustained because of your neighbors’ harassment.
- Draft a Hardship Letter: Neighbor harassment may not be covered as a reason to break a lease in your state. If that is the case, you can draft a hardship letter that outlines the reasons why a landlord should allow you to break a lease due to the neighbor's actions against you.
How to Break Your Lease With the Help of DoNotPay
If you want to , but you don't know where to start, DoNotPay has a few easy steps you can take to get the process started. We can help you build a strong case that explains why neighbor harassment is a real reason that justifies you breaking your lease early.
Here's how you can get started in 3 easy steps:
- Search Break My Lease on DoNotPay.
- Prepare a signed copy of your lease that you can use as a reference, and enter the state the lease was signed in.
- Let us guide you through the 4 potential options.
DoNotPay will then craft the perfect solution for you, depending on your specific situation:
- If you're a uniformed service member breaking a lease to fulfill your service obligations, we'll send your landlord an SCRA Protection Letter.
- If you're breaking your lease for a reason protected by your state's tenant laws, we'll write your landlord a letter detailing your protections for breaking the lease under the relevant law.
- If your reasons for breaking your lease aren't protected by federal or state law, but you'd like to try to convince your landlord to let you break the lease through mutual agreement, we'll draft a hardship letter making your case to your landlord.
- If there are no remaining options for breaking the lease with protection, but your state requires landlords to mitigate damages to tenants who break their leases, we'll notify your landlord of that obligation and minimize the remaining rent you have to pay.
What Else Can DoNotPay Do to Solve Your Frustrating Problems?
DoNotPay can assist anyone with everyday tasks. Some of the tasks that you can get assistance for with DoNotPay include:
- Canceling subscriptions and memberships
- Creating a power of attorney
- Changing a mailing address
- Reducing property taxes
DoNotPay can help you with these tasks and much more.