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Getting Out of an Apartment Lease [Kentucky]

cyclohexanecyclohexane Registered User new member
edited August 2012 in Help / Advice Forum
I just recently got an e-mail about a potential job interview that would require me to leave the state before the end of next month. Obviously this would require me to leave the state if I were to get the job. I have a roommate, and we just resigned the lease last month. I don't want to jump the gun on this; there's a chance I wont get the job. But if I do get it, and I do need to leave the state, I want to already know what I'll need to do.

We're both on the lease, so can I break it alone? Or do we need to break it together and then she'll be forced to re-sign? If she's forced to look for a new roommate, what's fair? I don't want to pay a year's worth of rent for an apartment I don't live in, but I don't want to leave her high and dry either.

Thanks!

cyclohexane on

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    Dr. FrenchensteinDr. Frenchenstein Registered User regular
    i think the penalty is typically 1 month's rent to break a lease, but i think you both need to break it. So if she refuses to break it, you'll be on the hook. but so will she, and it will be way easier for the landlord to go after her for the missing rent than you. if it goes that route, you are both going to be screwed, and i'm betting the friendship would be over.

    This is a shitty situation, but i can understand you don't want to forego a job oppurtunity. I'd offer to pay her part of the penalty, at the very least. However, your roommate might be able to find someone to sublet your spot, and the whole issue is pretty moot.

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    ThanatosThanatos Registered User regular
    You really just need to find a new roommate for your roommate, one she finds acceptable. She may even have someone in mind. You should give her a heads-up as far in advance as possible.

    Your landlord shouldn't really give a shit about who is living there, specifically, as long as it's two people paying their rent on time.

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    The Crowing OneThe Crowing One Registered User regular
    Thanatos wrote: »
    You really just need to find a new roommate for your roommate, one she finds acceptable. She may even have someone in mind. You should give her a heads-up as far in advance as possible.

    Your landlord shouldn't really give a shit about who is living there, specifically, as long as it's two people paying their rent on time.

    Mostly this. If your roommate is staying, a landlord will usually be happy to swap some stuff around to either make her the sole occupant or to bring in a potential new tenant. Landlords are all different, but I can say that my private landlord from my previous place still has my name on the lease with my ex, knows that I am gone and my ex has had a few different people living there since without a lick of issue.

    If it were you and you alone, you'd probably have to break. Since the apartment will still be occupied, it gets better.

    3rddocbottom.jpg
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    DarkewolfeDarkewolfe Registered User regular
    My last lease had a break penalty which required two month's notice and two months penalty rent, so basically four month's rent if you were breaking it at the last minute. It's absolutely a YMMV situation, and you HAVE to know what rules there are.

    If you have a roommate and you're both on the lease, you can't just break the lease by yourself. You basically just leave the roommate on the hook for the rent.

    Most places have a lease transfer option. There's often a fee of 25-50% of a month's rent for it, and you find someone else to take over your end of the lease. Or, if it's legal in your county, you just sub-let your space.

    TL;DR: You don't ever just break a lease without paying. Find a replacement.

    What is this I don't even.
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    bowenbowen How you doin'? Registered User regular
    edited August 2012
    REMINDER: Most states have a "I am moving more than X miles away" clause for tenants that allow you to break the lease with appropriate notification to the landlord. Somewhere like a month, and more than ~50 miles away. This is obviously shitty for co-tenant situations though, but I still think it would apply. But don't be a dick to the person you're leaving.

    bowen on
    not a doctor, not a lawyer, examples I use may not be fully researched so don't take out of context plz, don't @ me
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    cyclohexanecyclohexane Registered User new member
    Thanks everyone; you've helped me figure out how my priorities will be if the situation proceeds. I have no intention on just bailing on my roommate and she'll get appropriate notice; even if that notice has to be: I'm moving in three weeks, I'm going to stop paying rent in two months. I intend to give her a window.

    Assuming the land lord is fine with it, would it be unseemly to give her a window in which to find a roomate, say two or three months, pay rent for that period of time, and then expect her to pay after that if she couldn't? That is what scares me about being the co-signer on the lease--I know legally I'd still be on the hook, and I don't want to get evicted out of an apartment I don't live in if she stops paying rent.

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    bowenbowen How you doin'? Registered User regular
    Keep in mind, that I think Kentucky is the one off state that doesn't have this protection as far as I can tell. Though your lease may differ, and your landlord may be just fine with it if you let them know ahead of time.

    However, what you should do is negotiate a lease breaking bonus for your contract if you get hired. Say that you have X amount of months on the lease and see if they'd be willing to do that, or, at the least, pay for an apartment where you're moving to.

    not a doctor, not a lawyer, examples I use may not be fully researched so don't take out of context plz, don't @ me
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    The Crowing OneThe Crowing One Registered User regular
    edited August 2012
    I think talking to your roommate and going over a few variations of plans is probably the first step. Letting her know your plans and learning her desires with this can give you more steady footing. Once the two of you have an idea of various means to make it work, go to the landlord to facilitate.

    Also, do all of this as quickly as possible.
    bowen wrote: »
    However, what you should do is negotiate a lease breaking bonus for your contract if you get hired. Say that you have X amount of months on the lease and see if they'd be willing to do that, or, at the least, pay for an apartment where you're moving to.

    Bingo. This. This wins the thread. Employers do this kind of thing all the time and it often ends up being easiest for everyone.

    The Crowing One on
    3rddocbottom.jpg
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    KyouguKyougu Registered User regular
    Thanks everyone; you've helped me figure out how my priorities will be if the situation proceeds. I have no intention on just bailing on my roommate and she'll get appropriate notice; even if that notice has to be: I'm moving in three weeks, I'm going to stop paying rent in two months. I intend to give her a window.

    Assuming the land lord is fine with it, would it be unseemly to give her a window in which to find a roomate, say two or three months, pay rent for that period of time, and then expect her to pay after that if she couldn't? That is what scares me about being the co-signer on the lease--I know legally I'd still be on the hook, and I don't want to get evicted out of an apartment I don't live in if she stops paying rent.

    It's not on her to find a replacement roommate, it's on you.

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    DhalphirDhalphir don't you open that trapdoor you're a fool if you dareRegistered User regular
    Kyougu wrote: »
    Thanks everyone; you've helped me figure out how my priorities will be if the situation proceeds. I have no intention on just bailing on my roommate and she'll get appropriate notice; even if that notice has to be: I'm moving in three weeks, I'm going to stop paying rent in two months. I intend to give her a window.

    Assuming the land lord is fine with it, would it be unseemly to give her a window in which to find a roomate, say two or three months, pay rent for that period of time, and then expect her to pay after that if she couldn't? That is what scares me about being the co-signer on the lease--I know legally I'd still be on the hook, and I don't want to get evicted out of an apartment I don't live in if she stops paying rent.

    It's not on her to find a replacement roommate, it's on you.

    No one is advocating saying to her "find a roommate, your problem".

    But given that his roommate is the one who is going to be living with whoever is the replacement, it makes sense for her to be more involved in the process than he is.

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    EshEsh Tending bar. FFXIV. Motorcycles. Portland, ORRegistered User regular
    edited August 2012
    Dhalphir wrote: »
    Kyougu wrote: »
    Thanks everyone; you've helped me figure out how my priorities will be if the situation proceeds. I have no intention on just bailing on my roommate and she'll get appropriate notice; even if that notice has to be: I'm moving in three weeks, I'm going to stop paying rent in two months. I intend to give her a window.

    Assuming the land lord is fine with it, would it be unseemly to give her a window in which to find a roomate, say two or three months, pay rent for that period of time, and then expect her to pay after that if she couldn't? That is what scares me about being the co-signer on the lease--I know legally I'd still be on the hook, and I don't want to get evicted out of an apartment I don't live in if she stops paying rent.

    It's not on her to find a replacement roommate, it's on you.

    No one is advocating saying to her "find a roommate, your problem".

    But given that his roommate is the one who is going to be living with whoever is the replacement, it makes sense for her to be more involved in the process than he is.

    Yeah, no roommate wants another one to find them a roommate. Ever.

    And no landlord cares as long as one of you stays on the lease and fills the spot.

    Esh on
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    DhalphirDhalphir don't you open that trapdoor you're a fool if you dareRegistered User regular
    as long as he gets all his money, in other words

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