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Re: vacating before lease termination

Posted by TenantNet on September 15, 1997 at 00:21:58:

In Reply to: vacating before lease termination posted by Joan Friedman on September 11, 1997 at 11:02:12:

: Strange problem to have in this market, the end of July I
: gave notice to my landlord that I would be vacating in mid-September.

Which is plenty of time if you have no lease or if specified in a lease.

: My lease doesn't expire till Feb. 1. I understand that I am still liable
: for the rent, but isn't there a requirement in NY that the landlord make
: a good faith effort to rerent?

It's not statutory, but my understanding is that the courts usually
look for the owner to "mitigate his damages". If they sue you for the
rent after you leave, they have to claim actual dollar damages. If he
re-rents the unit at the same or higher rent, he's not economically damaged.
That's the theory and they often look at the totality of facts, including
owner efforts to rerent.

: The landlord said they would show the
: apartment and I have been completely available, but nothing has happened
: in all this time except for two or three people coming to look. What the

So document your availability and what the owner has or has not done.

: landlord has done is to raise the rent 25% (this is non stabilized) to a
: rent that is clearly above market for the building. They have not

Unless something is strange, they cannot raise the rent until your current
lease expires (even if non-stabilized).

: advertised it, but have placed it on their vacancy list (they manage 40
: buildings in the city).

That usually is not good enough. In NYC with a vacancy rate below 5%, it's
assumed they could rerent it tomorrow unless set unreasonably high or
something was wrong. Document what other units have actually gone for
and any repairs gone undone.

: Clearly what is happening is that they are hoping to find someone to
: pay the new rent but are willing to wait until my lease runs out. If
: they don't find someone by then, they will likely drop the rent. Thus,
: I am being screwed. What do you advise? Should I try to sublet?

Look at Real Property Law 226-b re sublets, and on several of the fact sheets.

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