Scottsdale, AZ asked in Real Estate Law and Landlord - Tenant for Arizona

Q: Broke lease due to Job loss. Rent was current and prepaid 1m security dep. Owner listed for $225 higher. Unreasonable?

Was only 5m into 12m lease. Explained job loss (COVID). Landlord was understanding. Paid full rent ($1875) on the first, and was out on the 8th. Had also paid a full month of rent as security deposit and $500 in non-refundable cleaning fees. Was hoping landlord could get re-rented within the 7 weeks we are paid thru. However, now he’s listed it for $2100, which is $225 or 12% more. Considering the current economic crisis, this seems very unreasonable. The rent was already on the high end of comparable rentals in the area when we rented. If the house doesn't rent, will we still be responsible - considering the increase in price? especially during a huge economic downturn?

1 Lawyer Answer
Peter H. Westby
Peter H. Westby
Answered
  • Landlord Tenant Lawyer
  • Scottsdale, AZ
  • Licensed in Arizona

A: I recommend that you consult with a real estate attorney if your landlord makes a claim against you for additional rent. Your landlord must mitigate its damages under Arizona law and the reasonableness of the landlords attempt to re-rent is a fact issue for the judge to decide should a claim be brought. You may also have entered into a settlement with the landlord when you forfeited deposits and paid your last month's rent. Your attorney would want to investigate this as well as other potential defenses.

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