What to Consider Before Breaking A Lease

Renting your own place can be convenient and liberating, and many students choose off-campus apartments near Clemson University for these very reasons. However, renting an apartment comes with certain responsibilities, including honoring the lease. When you sign that document, you’re legally obligated to pay rent for the agreed length of time. Of course, sometimes things happen that require you to move, and that can make your lease feel more like a ball-and-chain than a source of freedom. Breaking your rental agreement comes with consequences, yet there are also a few alternatives.

Penalties & Fees for Breaking a Lease

Read the lease for your apartment very carefully before breaking it. Often you’ll find the penalties are financially stiff, and if you’re on a tight budget as so many in Clemson student apartments are, paying the fees might difficult. For example, some rental agreements require you to pay off the remaining rent you would have owed had you stayed. If it’s early in your tenancy, this can be a lot of money.

Similarly, the managers of some off-campus student apartments have a simple fee in place for opting out of a lease, but the cost of this is often equivalent to several months’ rent. And bailing on your lease is certainly not an option. Landlords can bring you to court and sue for the rent money you owe. But keep in mind, it’s not that apartment owners are greedy. They’re counting on you to honor your contract and when you leave early, it costs them a lot of money, too.

Future Rental Opportunities

Breaking your lease today can negatively affect your ability to rent another apartment near Clemson University campus or elsewhere in the future. When you apply for a new rental property, the landlord will likely check your credit score and rental history. These two pieces of information are heavily weighted in a property owner’s decision whether to rent to a certain person. If you break a lease and don’t take care of the fees right away, the outstanding debt can lower your credit score. Also, your old landlord will keep a file on you, so if someone in the office of your prospective apartment calls them for a reference, they’ll know you broke the lease which could make you appear unreliable and thus a less appealing applicant. Of course, if you had a good reason for opting out of your old rental agreement most new landlords will understand this, but it’s best to avoid creating these concerns altogether.

Ways to Avoid Breaking Your Lease

When considering ways to avoid breaking your lease, first assess your situation and what solutions might apply. For example, if you had a roommate who left and you can’t afford the entirety of rent, this can be resolved by finding a new roommate. If you’re the one leaving, you can sublet your apartment to another renter to finish your lease term. Some rental companies will even allow you to leave with little or no penalty as long as you find a replacement tenant who signs a new lease. Meanwhile, if you’re trying to leave because the conditions where you live are untenable, there may be an available but complicated legal solution to get you out of your lease.

Find a Student Apartment Near Clemson University

There are so many options of student apartments for rent in Clemson, SC, that knowing what to look for can be overwhelming to a first-time tenant. Renters at The Ridge Clemson know we’re more than student apartments. We’re a community offering a fun and convenient life close to the campus. We also cater to the needs of first-time renters who may need extra guidance on steps like applying for an apartment or collecting their security deposit in full. If you haven’t had an opportunity to see how great student living can be at The Ridge Clemson, please schedule a tour to see our apartments and amenities.