6 Break Clause Tips for Landlords and Tenants
A break clause is a provision in a lease which enables either landlord or tenant (or both) to end the lease early. If you're a party seeking to exercise a break clause, here are some top tips to consider before exercising the break clause:
- Check you are entitled to exercise the break clause.
- Check who your current landlord/tenant is by reference to a copy of the Land Registry title, a recent rent demand or other correspondence.
- Check whether the lease prescribes the format of the break notice.
- Check how much notice is required and include additional time for service.
- Check whether the lease prescribes (a) a method of service of the notice ie first class post or by hand etc and/or (b) an address for service.
- Check whether there are any conditions that must be satisfied before exercising the break clause eg all rent must be paid up to date. Do the conditions need to be met when the notice is served or at the break date or both?
Drafting and Serving a Break Notice
It is important to get the drafting and service of a break notice correct because, if you don't, you may lose the opportunity to break the lease and, if you are a tenant, you may be liable to pay rent for the remainder of the term.
It is also vital that you comply with any conditions that are attached to the exercise of the break clause. The courts interpret conditions very strictly and a failure to satisfy a condition may prevent you from exercising a break option.
How Can We Help?
If you require any assistance in relation to:
- the drafting and service of a break notice
- what you must do to satisfy any conditions attached to a break clause
- or whether a break clause has been validly exercised
Please contact one of our experienced property litigators who will be able to provide you with a fee estimate.