‘How to break a lease?’ is often a question where the answer can vary wildly from case to case. Sometimes tenants will end a lease early, and sometimes you will need to end your tenant’s lease early – whether because you are wishing to sell or for another reason that does not meet the grounds for sufficient cause (like the tenant being in breach of the agreement by rent arrears or damage to your property).

Whatever the reason, if a tenant or an owner wishes to end a tenancy agreement before the end date without due cause this is called breaching of an agreement or breaking a lease.


Note: A tenancy agreement is legally binding, and if a lease is broken it is likely that compensation will need to be paid.

If you are going through the process of ending a lease early or seeking to end a lease early for your tenant then please call us for advice and guidance on this process. Call us on (07) 3188 7651 or get in touch with us online and we will call you back.

How to Terminate a Lease – Laws & Regulations

My tenant wants to end their lease

If your tenant wishes to end their lease, then they will need to inform the property manager or you as the owner of their intention. The tenant may be required to pay:

  • Reasonable re-letting cost (ordinarily the letting fee of one week’s rent plus GST)
  • Any advertising costs associated with re-letting the property
  • Compensation for loss of rent for such time until a new suitable tenant can be found

As your property manager, we are legally bound to minimise the costs that both parties incur which are associated with breaking a tenancy agreement. We know that things happen, and we are here to ensure that losses on both sides are mitigated as much as possible. If we do not meet this duty then the Residential Tenancies Authority (RTA) can step in to assist.

I want to end my tenant’s lease

While you may wish to end a lease early you cannot force your tenant to move out unless you have an order from QCAT. The best way to approach this is to get in touch with your tenant and let them know that you wish to end the lease.

You will need to mutually agree in writing for the lease to end on a specific date. Alternatively, you can resort to the excessive hardship application through QCAT provided that you have supporting documentation to this effect.

  • Once you have a mutually agreed date to end the lease you can formally provide notice of the tenancy ending by mutual agreement
  • Ensure that things are amicable between you and your tenant as it will make ending your lease agreement easier

How to Break a Lease by Compensating a Tenancy Agreement

When ending a lease prior to the end date stipulated there may be money owed by the party who is seeking to break the lease.

  • If the property owner is looking to end the lease early then depending on the circumstances they may need to compensate the tenant for the costs required to move and to find another suitable property.
  • If the tenant is looking to end the lease early then it is likely that they will need to compensate the owner for the costs required to find a suitable tenant or until such time as the tenancy agreement is over. A tenant may also need to pay for the costs of re-letting or advertising the property.

It is usual for these sorts of situations to be outlined and agreed in writing, making things easier to navigate.

How to Break a Lease by Excessive Hardship Conditions

In some cases, a tenant or a landlord will be experiencing a situation such as illness or financial issues which leads to them needing to break the lease. In this instance, it is possible to make an application to QCAT which allows for the agreement to be terminated with less severe compensation required. But it is usual for compensation to be paid in some form.

Contact Beyond Property Management for assistance with how to break a lease today

If you need property management from a business you can trust, where the focus is on customer service and an ongoing commitment to your satisfaction, call us. We are a leading Brisbane property management agency that are here to provide the peace of mind that makes the difference.

If you would like to know more about our rental property management fees or ask any questions please call us on (07) 3188 7651 or get in touch with us online and we will call you back.

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