How do I end a commercial lease that automatically renews every six months?
There are generally three ways to terminate a commecial lease early:
(1) termination due to the legal misconduct of the landlord;
(2) replacement in the premises by a new tenant, or
(3) by agreement between the landlord and tenant.
Most commercial leases contain contract terms as to the conditions you can terminate the lease early without penalty. If the early termination terms of the lease aren’t applicable, you may be liable for legal fees, sublease / assignment fees and payment of all or a portion of remaining rent.
If the landlord does not maintain the premises, this may constitute a breach of the landlord's duties. Local laws may provide for lease termination if there are undisclosed code violations or there are problems accessing the premises by the tenant. The landlord and tenant can always end their lease obligations by mutual agreement. It may also be possible to have the landlord agree to an assignment or sublease to a new tenant.