Break Lease Fees

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.

Termination notice

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.

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