It's really exciting to move out of a rental and into a new home. Congratulations! Now, its time to notify your landlord and terminate your lease.
Review Your Lease
If you’re currently renting, you will want to carefully read your lease and understand all that is required of you to properly to terminate your lease and what your termination options are. If your options and requirements are unclear from the lease, the Alaska Landlord & Tenant Act provides detailed explanations.
If you have a month to month lease then you need to give a written notice to the landlord at least 30 days before the rental due date specified as the termination date in the notice. If you want to move between rental dates, the notice must be delivered on or before the rental due date which falls at least 30 days before the move-out date. Understanding your lease is key to avoid unnecessarily paying an extra month’s rent.
If you have signed a lease that is longer than month-to-month and you need to move prior to the end of the lease, you are usually responsible for the rent for the rest of the lease period, unless the property can be re-rented earlier. The landlord is responsible for making a good faith effort in re-renting the property and can no longer charge you once they do.
Other options may include:
Pushing the closing date of buying your new home out as far as possible (usually a month or two at most). This ask would be made in the initial offer.
If your lease allows it, you can find subleasers who are willing to take over the lease. Other than asking friends in your own circles, the best way to find subleasers is to take photographs of the property and then list it on CraigsList. It is usually easier to find a tenant from April to August than it is from September to March.
You can choose to pay the rent until the end of the lease while taking on the new mortgage payments. This strategy would allow you to float back and forth between two homes, giving you time to make any renovations prior to moving in and/or plenty of time to pack and move at your convenience.
Move Out Requirements
When reviewing your lease, make sure you are aware of and schedule in all the requirements of you prior to moving.
Clean: Leave the place as clean as the condition of the premises permit.
Carpets: If the carpets were cleaned prior to you leasing the property, they may be required to be cleaned before when you move out.
Inspect: Inspect the property with the landlord noting any damages that occurred during your lease period. Both you and your landlord should sign an inspection report and keep it for your records. You cannot be charged for normal wear and tear. If you caused any damage, you can be held responsible.
Utilites: Make sure you are aware of how to turn off or take your name off of any utilities.
Security: Follow any instructions for returning mailbox keys, garage door openers, and house keys.
Mail: Be sure to change your address with the US Post Office and use the "mail forwarding" option.
Once you've taken care of everything you need to for your rental, you can soon enjoy the advantages of home ownership.