How to end a fixed term tenancy early

Options if you can't get out of your contract

You may decide to:

Leave early anyway

You may decide to leave anyway even though you can't end your fixed term tenancy early. You may have already left.

Your tenancy will end automatically if the landlord lets the property to someone else. Once a new tenancy begins, you're no longer liable for rent.

You can help your landlord find a new tenant more quickly if you: 

  • return the keys

  • explain you've left and can't pay rent

  • remove your belongings and leave the property in good condition

You're responsible for the rent until the property is rented out to new tenants unless you can:

  • use a break clause

  • agree a surrender

Keep negotiating after you leave.

Find out what happens if you don't end your tenancy legally.

Wait until the end of the fixed term

Many tenancies end automatically if everyone leaves by the last day of the fixed term.

Some fixed term contracts continue as periodic tenancies unless you give notice to say you're leaving.

Joint tenancies usually:

  • end if everybody leaves by the last day 

  • continue if any joint tenants stay on without signing a new agreement

Find out more about options at the end of a fixed term.

Stay and negotiate a rent reduction

Use our template to negotiate a rent reduction.

You might also be able to negotiate a reduction if repairs are causing problems.

It's important to keep paying as much rent as you can. 

Find out how to deal with rent arrears.

Last updated: 6 October 2021

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