If one portion of a lease is allegedly breached, does that then negate the rest of the lease, including the tenants responsibility to pay rent?

UPDATED: Aug 14, 2012

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If one portion of a lease is allegedly breached, does that then negate the rest of the lease, including the tenants responsibility to pay rent?

CA property. The tenant thinks I neglected the garden, telling me they were breaking the lease and leaving 3 months early without paying rent. I disagree with this claim. I issued a 3 day Pay or Quit, and just received email notification that the tenants have vacated the property. In that email the tenant demands the full return of the security deposit, even though I have yet to see the property since they alerted me at 11pm at night. The tenants have allowed communication through email only, even though the lease clearly states that everything must be in writing through the mail.

Asked on August 14, 2012 under Real Estate Law, California


FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

Whether or not there is a material breach of the lease depends warranting the end of the lease without recourse ordinarily is a factual issue to be determined by the trier of fact. Ordinarily, the neglect of a garden issue for a residential lease does not amount to a material breach of the lease warranting its end without legal recourse for money owed the landlord.

From what you have written it seems that the former tenants owe three months of rent.

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