In order to terminate a property lease, most commonly in the form of an apartment lease, the tenant must stop paying rent and leave the premises permanently. If the tenant only stops paying rent and does not move out, this does not terminate the lease and therefore the tenant still has the duty to pay rent under the lease.
Generally, a tenant is not entitled to a reduction in rent if the building falls into disrepair, even if the landlord refuses to make repairs. However, a tenant may pay for a repair herself if the landlord does not immediately fix the problem, and then deduct that amount from the rent the tenant usually pays.
Landlord-tenant laws tend to be rather complex and vary from state to state. Before taking action to terminate your lease as a tenant, you should consult a real estate lawyer to get a sense of what your lease and local statutes allow you to do and what actions they prohibit.
Last Modified: 04-16-2018 08:10 PM PDTLaw Library Disclaimer
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