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Time to move out and move on: top tips to make sure you do it right

By Dan Sowden

We all know what it’s like to have a change in plans at late notice. However, when it comes to moving house and breaking your lease it can be a lot more complex and significantly more expensive than just trying to change mobile phone providers! Essentially the term ‘Breaking your Lease’ is when you wish to leave your rental property prior to the end of the

agreed term. Around 30% of all properties are ‘rented’ making tenancy agreements and Lease’s a very common occurrence.


Firstly, it should be acknowledged that a Tenancy Agreement or Lease is a legally binding document and not just something that you can walk away from at a whim. If you do walk away, the penalties imposed on the tenant can be a lo

t worse than just the risk of losing your bond, there is also potential to receive a black mark on your credit rating as well as being added to Tica List (preventing you from renting other property) by the rental agency.

If you are needing to break your lease, here are our Top 5 Tips to ensure you minimise any costs and avoid any pitfalls…

Tip 1: You must notify the agency in writing of your movements

When notifying your rental agency, they will advise you of what your next steps are as well as talking with the owner of the property. In some occasions, the Property Manager is aware of the owners future plans which may include either moving into the property or conducting renovations and improvements, possibly creating the opportunity where the owner will let you leave your lease early without penalty. Further notifying the agency will assist in engaging their leasing team to assist finding a replacement tenant to take over the lease.


Tip 2: Have the property presented to its best to help secure a tenant quickly

The rental market is very competitive and often the properties that are presented well will rent the quickest and at traditionally better prices.

Tip 3:  Be accommodating to the agency to allow prospective tenants through at any time

The rental market is very fast and as a result inspections are conducted at short notice; usually during business hours Monday-Friday. We find that tenants may not wait around to look at numerous properties, instead just placing an application on the first they see that is suitable.


Tip 4:  Don’t be afraid to do a private ad in the paper and refer the prospective tenants to complete an application at the agency

Work as a team with your agency, sometimes placing an ad in the paper and referring prospective tenants over to the agency will assist in renting the property. The rental agency will do all the necessary applications and checks, however your assistance with prospective applications could be invaluable.

Tip 5: Be aware that you are responsible for the rent until another suitable tenant is found + a break lease fee which is equivalent to 1 weeks rent + GST – We wouldn’t recommend signing another lease until you have secured a tenant for your current one, otherwise it could become quiet costly.

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