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An Eviction Notice is legal notification landlords use to terminate a lease with a tenant and evict them from a property.
An eviction notice gives the tenant the reason for the eviction and protects your interest as a landlord.
Many jurisdictions also require eviction notices to proceed with evictions.
What Is an Eviction Notice?
An eviction notice is the first step to evicting a tenant from your property. This notice informs the tenant of your intent to evict them and calls for them to vacate the premises by a specified date.
Some eviction notices give a tenant a chance to rectify the cause of eviction, such as failure to pay rent or a lease violation.
It is crucial to ensure your eviction notice complies with the process set out in your lease agreement with the tenant and the law.
Why Do You Need an Eviction Notice?
When there are disagreements between landlords and tenants, negotiations and compromises often fix the problem. But sometimes, relationships fall apart, and tenant eviction is warranted.
Eviction notices are typically the first step in removing a tenant from a rental property.
An eviction notice must inform tenants about your intent to evict them.
Since an eviction notice is usually the start of the eviction process, to proceed with the eviction, you must first inform the tenant that they have to cure a lease breach or face eviction proceedings.
Sometimes, eviction is warranted and tenants do not have the option to cure a breach.
Different jurisdictions also have different rules concerning tenant eviction. Federal, state, and local laws often overlap, making processes complicated.
So, ensure that you provide proper and timely notice of your intent to evict a tenant.
When Do You Use an Eviction Notice?
Use an eviction notice when you need your tenant to vacate your property. Here are common scenarios where you may need an eviction notice:
- Missed or late rental payments: This is the terror of every landlord — your tenant stopped paying rent. In this situation, you are entitled to evict the non-paying tenant from your property. In the eviction notice, you would explain that the reason for the notice is that the tenant stopped paying.
- Lease Violation: If a tenant violates the terms of their lease agreement, you may be entitled to evict them. For example, if your lease agreement prohibits subletting the property and the tenant does this, you can initiate eviction proceedings.
- Illegal Activities: If the tenant breaks the law or commits unlawful activities on the premises, this can also be grounds for eviction. For example, if the tenant traffics illegal drugs on the premises, you can give notice ordering them to vacate the premises.
- Holdover Tenant: If a tenant remains on the premises after the end of the lease agreement, you will give the tenant notice to begin the eviction process.
Depending on the situation and terms of the lease, you may decide to give the tenant time to catch up with payments or rectify their actions. The eviction will proceed if the tenant does not meet that payment deadline.
What to Include in an Eviction Notice
The contents of an eviction notice vary by jurisdiction. However, the following are generally included in an eviction letter:
- Names of the tenant(s) and landlord
- Address of the property
- Dates of the lease agreement
- Reason for the eviction notice (include the amount of unpaid rent, explain illegal activities, or detail lease violations)
- Deadline to vacate premises
How to Write an Eviction Notice
Follow the steps below to write an eviction notice.
Step 1 – Enter Tenant Details
Write the name of the tenant (s) and the complete street address for the rental property.
Step 2 – Fill Out the Lease Agreement and Late Rent Details
Note the name of the original lease agreement and the date the landlord and tenant entered the contract. Describe the late rent date and fee, plus any other late fees owed.
Step 3 – Tell Tenant How to Pay Late Rent
Specify how the tenant must pay the late rent and when it is due.
Step 4 – Refer to State Statues
Ensure your document notes the applicable state laws that govern the eviction.
Step 5 – Sign and Date the Document
The landlord must sign and date the notice, and enter his or her contact information.
Step 6 – Provide Proof of Service
Include proof of service in the form of the document delivery date and method of delivery.
Step 7 – Have the Server Sign Document
The person serving the eviction notice must sign the document, print his or her full name, and date the notice.