Breaking a fixed-term agreement early
When a tenant signs a fixed-term agreement, they are committing to stay for the full term.
If a tenant wants to move out before the end of the fixed term, there could be costs involved.
There are some situations where a tenant can end a fixed-term agreement without penalty.
A tenant should give the landlord as much notice as they can if they need to end the agreement early.
A tenant should also make it as easy as possible for the landlord or agent to show the property to potential new tenants.
Breaking fixed-term agreements signed from 23 March 2020
For agreements of three years or less early
Mandatory break fees may apply which is payable based on the stage of the agreement.
A break fee is a penalty a tenant agrees to pay if they move out before the end of the fixed term.
If the mandatory break fee applies, the set fee payable is:
- four weeks rent if less than 25 per cent of the agreement has expired
- three weeks rent if 25 per cent or more but less than 50 per cent of the agreement has expired
- two weeks rent if 50 per cent of more but less than 75 per cent of the agreement has expired
- one week rent if 75 per cent or more of the agreement has expired.
A termination notice must:
- be in writing
- be signed and dated by the party giving the notice
- include the address of the rented property
- state the day the tenancy agreement is terminated (and by which the tenant will need to move out), and
- include the reasons for termination (if applicable).
Termination notices can be given at any time and do not have to line up with the rent payment cycle.