Is your tenant in breach of the lease? Find out here what you can do about it.
What is a ‘breach’ of lease?
A ‘breach’ is where the tenant has done an act that the lease prohibits. For instance, the lease may say that the tenant must not use the site for an illegal use. If the tenant does so, the tenant is in breach.
A ‘breach’ is also where the tenant has failed to do an act that the lease requires. For instance, the lease may say that the lease must take out insurance. If the tenant fails to do so, the tenant is in breach.
What can you do about a ‘breach’ of lease?
This may depend on what your lease says. In most cases, you should be able to issue a default notice. If the tenant fails to comply with the notice, you may be able to terminate the lease.
You may be able to fix the default yourself and charge the costs to the tenant. We call this a ‘step-in right’. For instance, the lease may require the tenant to keep the site clean. If the tenant fails to do so, a step-in right should allow you to send in cleaners. The step-in right should also allow you to charge the tenant the costs of the cleaners.
This of course assumes it is possible for you to fix it. It also assumes that the lease allows for a step-in right. It is much harder to do this if the lease does not allow for it.
If you have a security, you may be able to claim against that.
You may also be able to take court action. You may be able to seek an injunction to stop the breach. You may be able to sue for damages. Or you may be able to do both.
To summarise, you may be able to:
- issue a default notice and later terminate the lease;
- step-in and fix the default yourself;
- claim against security; and
- take court action.
More information about a breach of lease
Want to know more about whether your tenant is in breach? Please contact us here or below and we will be happy to help.
This article is not legal advice. You should get independent legal advice to deal with your situation.
For past articles, see here.