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How to get of of lease without penalty

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Junior Member
What is the name of your state (only U.S. law)? Pennsylvania

I signed a year lease on 10/1/14 with a management company called DNA. The lease runs from 10/1/14 until 10/31/2015. At the end of December the building where our apartment is located was sold to two people who never bought a building before and have never been landlords before. Shortly after the new landlords took over we lost lost water and it took them 3.5 days to fix it. Now keep in mind I have two children one is 3 yrs old and one at the time was 2 months old. When that happened one of the landlords mentioned to us he could let us out of the lease (he said this on a few occasions while trying to fix our water issue) if we wanted, but at the time we did not want to.

On 2/2/15 a leak came threw my son's bedroom closet. It destroyed the entire closet to where the landlord had to use a hammer to break the ceiling to let all the water out. When that happened he said he would fix it, but to keep in mind we have to work around his schedule. After it happened we noticed an odor from the closet that smells like mold and mildew, so we closed the closet door and locked the door because I am worried about my son being in there and myself breathing in any of it since I have asthma. The week it happened he contacted us about fixing it, but he never showed up that weekend to fix it. On 2/11/15 we got contacted about another apartment becoming available on 3/1/15. We asked one of our landlords on 2/14/15 about letting us out of the lease as he stated earlier he would and he seemed fine, but we had to talk to the other landlord. We talked to the other landlord and she said she had to think about it and would get back to us. On 2/16/15 after not receiving any word we called the one landlord who was okay with it, but he didn't answer so we left a message. Today we called again because we didn't hear anything back and they said no they won't let us out of the lease if they have to honor the lease so do we. We then asked about the closet and he said he will come on Thursday 2/19/15 to fix it and it will take a day to a day and a half to fix. Now if he does come on Thursday to fix it it will be 18-19 days where we couldn't use a bedroom in our 2 bedroom apartment. Is there anyway we can get out of this lease without a penalty of having to pay the rest of the years rent?

Gail in Georgia

Senior Member
" Is there anyway we can get out of this lease without a penalty of having to pay the rest of the years rent?"

If the repair is finally adequately addressed, no.

If it is not addressed, you can always consider contacting Code Enforcement who will likely either give the landlord a time frame to repair the issue or (worst case scenario) condemn the rental unit (unlikely from what you have described) in which case you get to move out because of this.

Before one considers breaking a lease over a repair issue that they feel has not been addressed in a timely manner, it is important that they have adequate documentation of such as their reason for the lease breaking should be matter end up in a court of law. You don't want to face a lawsuit over all of this.


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