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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Dec. 28, 2012
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    6

    Default Man problems and dealing with breakup fallout--namely, a lease. Advice needed!

    I'm posting under an alter since I know some other COTHers in a casual way IRL and would rather they weren't privy to the details of my relationship issues.

    So, long story short, it looks like I'm on the verge of a breakup. It's been a long time coming, in reality. We've been together for over 5 years, and lived together for 4 of those. Right now we're in a two-bedroom apartment with a lease that isn't up until August.

    So, this morning while we're having a requisite emotional "I really think this is over" talk he brings up that, once I move out it isn't really fair for me to "leave him on the hook" for rent, and that I should pay my half even after I'm gone.

    Now, we do not have a written agreement that stipulates this, and our lease simply states that rent needs to be paid. I broached this topic with our management company when we signed the lease "just in case" and was told that as far as they're concerned, they don't care who's paying each month as long as they get their money. Where it comes from is entirely between me and him, though of course both of us are responsible for it.

    So the issue is, our rent is high--we live in a pricey urban area. My half eats up nearly 50% of my income, so clearly I'm not in a position to continue paying up when I'm no longer living there. From his perspective, that doesn't matter--he thinks I should move in with my parents (who live over an hour away, which would make my daily commute into work a crazy fun time, let me tell you ) and just eat the inconvenience since it's "my fault" the relationship is ending.

    My perspective is this--we live in a two-bedroom because he works from home and "needed" the extra space. He's not in a position to downsize easily because he literally has a borderline hoarding situation (no dirt or trash or bugs, just tons of "stuff") going on in our apartment (another major bone of contention that has drive us apart, clearly). In other words, its not really my problem that he's now stuck with overly-expensive rent.

    I do realize that I'm financially responsible for the apartment as well, so if he fails to pay the rent, the management company could come after me. However, unlike me, he has no fallback, and basically will have to through hell and back if need be to pay rent--otherwise, he'll be out on the street, literally. So, I think he's really stuck in between a rock and hard place of his own making, as a) his lifestyle necessitated the size and price of the apartment in the first place and b), he's dictating that I be the one who leaves (if I stayed I would just quickly find a roommate to take over his half for the remainder of the lease term. He won't--see, hoarding situation.)

    So, after this way long explanation, what I'm asking, outside of any advice in general for dealing with a breakup, if there is any legal recourse he could take against me for not paying "my half"? Or, conversely, is there anything I could do, if necessary, to force him to let me out of the lease?

    Any advice would be really helpful...I'm feeling a bit numb to all of it right now and just trying to be practical, but in reality, it's all pretty devastating far beyond the apartment issue.



  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun. 14, 2006
    Location
    VA
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    11,372

    Default

    Well, there's fair and then there's legal. I'm not an attorney nor do I play one on TV.

    Legally, if you're not on the lease, I can't think of a way the leasing company could go after you. If you ARE on the lease, look at the terms. The early termination clause may not require that you pay out the entire amount. It depends. You may want to consult with an attorney on that.

    Fairness wise? If you're not on the lease, I think that you give him 30 days. Pay your half of Jan rent. And suggest to him that he hit CL and get a roommate. He'll need to move his work stuff into his bedroom.

    It's not always fun to have a roommate, but sometimes it's necessary. Sometimes, you have to get an extra job to cover expenses. And sometimes, you have to move.
    A good horseman doesn't have to tell anyone...the horse already knows.

    Might be a reason, never an excuse...


    1 members found this post helpful.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Aug. 2, 2004
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    Whidbey Is, Wash.
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    Default

    Have you suggested him moving his crap out of the second room so you can both still live there? This IS not ideal, however.

    If you leave, and he stays, the landlords will be knocking on HIS door. Can they come after you if you leave and he can't pay? Well...they can. Will they? Most likely not, he'll get evicted and they'll re-rent. Can you both try to sublet the apartment and both move? Offer to pay part of the rent (both of you) to sweeten the deal? Ask the management company if they can advertise the apartment and allow you to break the lease if they can get someone else in there? I did this once, worked out great, everyone was happy. Landlords just don't want a. squatters or b. empty units. Satisfy those, and you can generally walk away from a lease without penalty.

    You're under no obligation to bankroll his apartment.
    COTH's official mini-donk enabler

    "I am all for reaching out, but in some situations it needs to be done with a rolled up news paper." Alagirl


    1 members found this post helpful.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Sep. 4, 2007
    Location
    Crossville, TN
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    1,205

    Default

    I assume you are on the lease?

    Find out if the management company would have a smaller (more affordable) apartment he could move into without breaking the lease. He may refuse to go for it, but the more options you present him (besides paying half the rent) the more likely he'll be more reasonable!



  5. #5
    Join Date
    Aug. 17, 2012
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    1,533

    Default

    Some rental agencies will allow you to break a lease for a fee or replace yourself for no charge. I would talk to them and see if they would redo the lease under his name only, removing you off of it for a fee or if you could be replaced on the lease with someone else (giving him a roommate).

    Or you could just live together as platonic room mates until the lease is up.



  6. #6
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    Aug. 17, 2012
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    Default

    Double post



  7. #7
    Join Date
    Dec. 28, 2012
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    6

    Default

    I am on the lease. I've already decided that, if I do indeed leave, there's no way I'll be paying half of the rent (outside of possibly, January's) as it's not affordable or, from my perspective, fair.

    I would actually be willing to suck it up and live there even after we've broken up but I can guarantee that it isn't something he'd go for.

    So really, selfishly, I'm just worried that he could somehow hold me legally responsible for my half, though, as I mentioned, we do not have anything in writing stipulating that that either of us are personally responsible for paying.



  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jun. 14, 2006
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    VA
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    Default

    But if you're on the lease, you are personally responsible for paying. It's like cosigning a loan, isn't it? If person A doesn't pay, they go after person A and B.

    The bottom line is that neither of you can afford this place if you're not both living there. So he's going to have to meet you in the middle somewhere.

    I'd figure out what the early term fee is. You guys may have to cohabitate for awhile til you can each save up enough money to get out. Or if he wants to stay and get a roommate, perhaps he can sign a new lease. A 6 mo one?
    A good horseman doesn't have to tell anyone...the horse already knows.

    Might be a reason, never an excuse...


    3 members found this post helpful.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    May. 8, 2006
    Location
    Northern Indiana
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    765

    Default

    You need to make sure that he understands that if he can't afford it by himself, he can't kick you out and demand you pay rent (legally, they can go after you, but fairness wise that's absolutely ridiculous).

    Either he takes on the full rent (finding a roommate or whatever), or you find out what the cost is to break the lease and pay it and go your separate ways.

    The apartment DH and I moved into was an early 'release' from a contract - basically, the previous tenants found us, showed the apartment themselves, worked it out with the management company, and the company let them out of their lease without penalty because they did all the work to fill the unit and we were right behind them ready to sign.
    To be loved by a horse should fill us with awe, for we hath not deserved it.



  10. #10
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    Aug. 17, 2012
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    He cannot hold you responsible since you do not have an agreement, technically. The rental company absolutely can hold you liable and tack on all sorts of fees and legal costs. The soon to be ex could also try to take you to small claims since your unspoken agreement for rent was based on the relationship and he is claiming the ending is all on you.

    Talk to the leasing company and see what they can do. Pay the fee to get off the lease and be done.



  11. #11
    Join Date
    Feb. 18, 2001
    Location
    New York, NY
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    Default

    Can you find someone to take over the remainder of your lease? Then you can both move. He might not like that, given the amount of stuff he has, but that's really the only fair option.



  12. #12
    Join Date
    Jun. 24, 2006
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    Default

    I was in a lease with my ex when I broke up with him and moved back home to NJ due to a family emergency.The leasing company let me off no problem but he had to sign off.

    Otherwise... either he lets you continue to live there as a room mate or he finds a room mate if he would like to live there. Otherwise you break the lease or sublet. Too bad for him.

    What a jerk.


    2 members found this post helpful.

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Jun. 24, 2005
    Location
    Alabama
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    10,230

    Default

    Many leases don't allow subleasing, but I bet if she talks to the management company that they will let her off the lease for a fee. Sometimes the fee is a full month's lease, but that would be cheaper than paying the rest of the term. And she might also mention that they should inspect the apartment after she moves out, and they might be glad to let both of them move.
    You can't fix stupid-Ron White



  14. #14
    Join Date
    Oct. 15, 2001
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    4,720

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by TheJenners View Post
    Have you suggested him moving his crap out of the second room so you can both still live there? This IS not ideal, however.

    If you leave, and he stays, the landlords will be knocking on HIS door. Can they come after you if you leave and he can't pay? Well...they can. Will they? Most likely not, he'll get evicted and they'll re-rent. Can you both try to sublet the apartment and both move? Offer to pay part of the rent (both of you) to sweeten the deal? Ask the management company if they can advertise the apartment and allow you to break the lease if they can get someone else in there? I did this once, worked out great, everyone was happy. Landlords just don't want a. squatters or b. empty units. Satisfy those, and you can generally walk away from a lease without penalty.

    You're under no obligation to bankroll his apartment.
    This.

    He does not get to hold you and your bank account hostage while he lives the lifestyle he wants and you are stuck living at your parents. Either he pays the whole freight, moves his crap out of the 2nd room and you live there, or he moves out and you find a roommate.

    Don't feel guilty or feel like you are "responsible" for the breakup and need to support him financially. He needs to readjust his expectations to his income level and deal with the situation... not just expect you to keep shelling out exorbitant money for a place you aren't even living in.


    3 members found this post helpful.

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Jan. 1, 2008
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    4,991

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by AlterN View Post
    I would actually be willing to suck it up and live there even after we've broken up but I can guarantee that it isn't something he'd go for.
    Too bad for him. He'll have to do the sucking up. You're legally entitled to live there until the lease is up in August. Tell him to get his fanny in gear and find a roommate. Until he finds one, you're not moving.

    Unpleasant, yes. But perhaps the threat of not leaving will encourage him to find someone to take over your half of the rent. Just be careful who he picks and make them sign onto the lease. You don't want someone that comes in for a month, then backs out, leaving you with the responsibility for the rent going forward.

    Sounds to me like he wants to live alone and have you cover his living expenses. At least one thing's for sure, you're probably better off without the deadbeat.
    Fan of the Swedish Chef


    4 members found this post helpful.

  16. #16
    Join Date
    Aug. 2, 2004
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    Whidbey Is, Wash.
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    Default

    And his is the one suggesting you move in with your parents, which is a burden for you commute-wise, AND still pay rent there? Pfftt. He has lost his fool mind.
    COTH's official mini-donk enabler

    "I am all for reaching out, but in some situations it needs to be done with a rolled up news paper." Alagirl


    3 members found this post helpful.

  17. #17
    Join Date
    Oct. 16, 2008
    Location
    Central Oklahoma
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    3,507

    Default

    If I were in your shoes, I would ask his ass out, and give him a fair chance to relinquish his "responsibility" for the half rent. On the other hand, if he wants you out, he is responsible for the whole rent. No way I'm paying a dime if I am the one getting kicked out. Now if "I" want out, I will pay up the half rent.



  18. #18
    Join Date
    Jan. 14, 2003
    Location
    Massachusetts
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by AlterN View Post
    So really, selfishly, I'm just worried that he could somehow hold me legally responsible for my half, though, as I mentioned, we do not have anything in writing stipulating that that either of us are personally responsible for paying.
    I would imagine that if you are on the lease agreement and walk away and he pays the lease to keep from defaulting, then he might very well be able to come after you for your half. You signed a lease so you need to figure out how to legally get out of it.

    Quote Originally Posted by Gloria View Post
    On the other hand, if he wants you out, he is responsible for the whole rent.
    Yes, that would work if he agrees to have the lease change to his own name. If he does not have the income to qualify on his won then he may not even be able to get the lease in his name, even if he wanted to. Which he doesn't.


    1 members found this post helpful.

  19. #19
    Join Date
    Dec. 28, 2003
    Location
    Canada where all hell has broke free
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    This is what I would do. Set up a meeting with him and two other people, older maybe your parents or his and yours.

    Then I would draw up Three contracts, One where you move out and he takes over the full rent, one where he moves out and you take over the full rent and one where you both stay each have there own room and both pay half the rent.

    Then have a sit down with the other people, him and you and talk it out. Then you both have to sign one set of contracts before the evening is over and then you move on from there. This way if he won't sign anything you have others to back you up if you have to go to court. After you work it out you go to the management company and talk to them.

    Now I know I wouldn't be moving out of my home till I have something on paper that says I no longer have to pay 1/2 the rent. I would be moving his stuff out of the bedroom and putting a lock on the bedroom door and changing all my pass words on all my accounts and getting a new bank card.
    My life motto now is "You can't fix stupid!"

    Are you going to cowboy up, or lie there and bleed


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  20. #20
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    Aug. 12, 2010
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    Westford, Massachusetts
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    Does your lease have the "jointly and severally liable" clause in it? When I was renting with roommates, mine all did. It meant that each of us was individually liable for the entire rent. We paid with only one check. Landlord did not care who it came from our how we reimbursed each other, just that he got paid. When someone moved out, whoever stayed had to pay the whole rent. The only one who'd be having to chase down the wayward tenant was their co-tenant, landlord would just collect the rent from the remaining tenant.



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