“I need to leave my property, but my lease does not expire for another two months. What costs am I likely to incur as a tenant in Western Australia?”
We asked Emma McCagh, Former Property Manager at Jones Ballard Property Group for her advice:
“As you have signed a fixed-term lease, you are responsible for the property until the lease expiry date,” Emma said.
“If during your lease term, you need to vacate the property, this is classed as breaking lease.”
Emma said the break lease process can be quite costly and the following fees will be charged to tenants:
- Continuing to pay the rent until a new tenant is found;
- Maintaining the property in a clean condition – if you move out immediately, the property will need to be cleaned for new tenants if and when they are found, this includes garden areas if applicable;
- Continuing to pay all utility accounts until a new tenant is found;
- If we find a new tenant but they offer under your current rental amount (for example, $275/week), you will need to make up the weekly difference. If the new rent is $270/week, you will need to pay $280/week until the expiry of your lease which is your rent plus the $5 difference (as the owner was going to have $275pw for 12 months) in rent amounts until the end of your lease;
- You will need to reimburse the owner the unexpired portion of the letting fee the owner paid for you to lease the property, until the end of your lease. This total cannot be worked out until a new tenancy date is confirmed; and
- Covering the cost of advertising for finding new tenants and the final bond inspection fee. These prices depend on what the owner is charged per their Management Agreement with the Agent.
(Note, this information is specific to tenancies in WA).
“The above fees can be deducted from the bond, however, the rent must be paid continuously and not taken from the bond as tenants can be fined $5,000 for intentionally not paying rent in hopes to be deducted from their bond,” Emma said.