Is there a time limit on notice to vacate to a landlord?

Q: I had a one-year lease for which the contract states I must give 60-days’ notice if I intend not to renew. I thought I needed to give 30 days-notice. I purchased a home and informed my landlord I was not renewing. I gave him over 30-days-notice and he won’t release me, says I must pay the full years rent. Do I have any options? (Swissvale, PA)

A: If it was written in the lease, you agreed to it and therefore are bound to give 60 days-notice. However, with your notice, although only 30 days or so, the land lord has a duty to mitigate by finding another tenant and preparing the apartment to rent. He has a strict legal duty to find another tenant as soon as reasonably possible. He just can’t sit back and expect to collect the balance of the lease contract. I would continue to move. Demand a return of your deposit in writing by certified mail stating your new address. He will settle with you or sue you. If you go to court, he will not likely get a judgment of the balance of the rent.

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