Legality of rescission of a lease by the tenant.
The parties entered into a lease for an indefinite period on 19 December 2019. On 13 September 2020 the tenant informed the landlord that he had decided to move out due to circumstances beyond his control. He proposed that the last day of the rent period would be 30 October 2020. The landlord informed the tenant on 18 September that he had begun advertising the apartment for rent. On 20 September the tenant informed the landlord that the apartment was empty, and had been cleaned, and that he had moved out. Then, on 2 October, the tenant sent the landlord an e-mail in which he said he had been compelled to move out because of violations of the lease by the landlord. In this connection he mentioned that the landlord had permitted artisans to enter the apartment without his permission and that the defects which he had demanded be put to rights had not been made good.
The Complaints Committee took the view that the rescission which the tenant sent on 13 September was not in conformity with the third paragraph of Article 60 of the Rent Act. That e-mail should, in fact, have been understood as a notice of termination rather than a rescission. Nevertheless, it emerged later in the correspondence that rescission had been based on the ground that the apartment had been entered without permission. The Complaints Committee took the view that this was an isolated incident, which was not sufficient to meet the requirement of point 7 of the first paragraph of Article 60, which covers repeated violations by the landlord. Taking all of this into account, the committee considered the rescission by the tenant as unlawful. The materials submitted by the parties showed that the landlord had used the rented premises as a storeroom from 16 to 23 October. He considered there was no offence involved in this since the apartment was empty. The landlord was not able to produce any evidence showing that he had advertised the property for rent as he was obliged to do in order to limit his losses under the second paragraph of Article 61 of the Rent Act.
Conclusion: The landlord lacked authorisation to demand rent from the tenant after 16 October 2020.