There are dozens of companies out there that promise tenants they can break their lease with a letter or a phone call. These companies charge hundreds of dollars, sometimes they charge one month’s rent. They come to your home and assess the property, take pictures and video of damages or what is perceived as damages and material defects in your home. They prepare a 5 day or a 10 day request for repairs. The strategy is to bombard the landlord with repair request and when the landlord refuses or can not make the repairs, a subsequent letter is sent indicating that the tenant is exercising their right to terminate the lease. You believe that it is within your right to terminate, you leave and a year later you are in court. Why? Because the 5 day notice can serve as a defense to a breach of the lease claim by your landlord but it is not a catch all nor is it a get-out-of-your-lease-free card. If the landlord fails to make the repairs, then you should negotiate a mutual rescission agreement to end the contract before you leave. If you don’t, you can find yourself in court a year later for a breach of the lease claim and at that point, you may not have the 5-day notice as proof, no pictures or videos to defend the action. It is important that you speak to an attorney before you move out.
Note: The statute allows the landlord to begin making the repairs within the 5 or 10 days, he doesn’t have to fix it within that time frame. Below is a sample 5-day request for repairs for Arizona residents ONLY.
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