Author: Marina Shlomov
As a landlord, you will undoubtedly have questions about the legal documents you should be using for different actions. For first time landlords, it might seem obvious that a notice is needed to evict a tenant, but did you know that a legal notice must be presented if you’re going to raise rent or go onto the premises? Each state is somewhat different, but there are a few general rules of thumb that apply across the board when it comes to setting forth the appropriate legal forms for handling your tenants. In this article, we’re going to cover 10 of the most common – and necessary – notices that every landlord need to know about.
- Intent to Enter
Most places in the United States will require you to provide a written warning to your tenants if you’re planning on coming onto the premises. This Notice of Intent to Enter is lawfully required in most states, it can also be provided electronically. It’s best to give your tenants at least a 24 hour notice before you come onto the premises.
- Rent Increase
If you have found that your rental property has increased in value, you might consider raising the rent. You will need to provide a notice 1-2 months in advance.
- Intent to Dispose of Abandoned Personal Property
If a tenant has left your property but has left some of their personal belongings behind, you will need to provide a letter to the tenant before throwing away or selling these items. Each state has varying laws on the topic. Your state might require that you give a month’s advance notice before getting rid of these items, or you might be able to trash or sell them right away.
- Maintenance, Repairs, Renovations, and Outages
If you’ve scheduled a contractor to stop by your rental property to conduct any kind of work, or if you’re aware of an upcoming water or power outage, then you should let your tenant know as soon as possible. If there will be a disruption that makes access to essential services impossible, then you might need to consider offering your tenants a hotel stay.
- Transfer of Ownership or Management
If you’re property has been sold or is under new management, it’s customary to let your tenants know. While you might not need to offer the new owner’s contact information, you should at least let your tenants know that they will be contacted shortly.
If you intend on renewing your tenant’s lease for the new year, you’ll need to send them a notification that their lease is set to expire within 1-3 months. Send a renewal offer to give yourself plenty of time in the event that they don’t renew and you’re left to find new tenants.
If you’ve decided to terminate your tenant upon their lease’s expiration, you’ll need to inform them in writing. Check with your state to see how much time you’ll need to give for a notice of non-renewal.
- Immediate Eviction
Make sure to check with your state laws to see what the requirements are for presenting an immediate termination of lease. Most of the time, an unconditional quit notice is acceptable when a tenant has missed more than one rent payment, has caused damage to the property, or has been doing something illegal on the property.
- Remedy or Vacate
Your tenant has made a minor infraction in the lease, such as housing unapproved pets or Sublet. Perhaps your tenant has done work around the property that wasn’t approved. You can ask the tenant to correct the problem or leave in a specified time frame.
- Pay or Vacate
In your lease, there is a specified grace period, and if your tenant doesn’t pay within that grace period, then you can ask that they pay up or move out. It’s that simple! You should check your state laws, however, to see how much notice is needed.
Being a landlord can be difficult when you find yourself in tough circumstances, but, by using these notices, you can rest assured that you are following the laws while protecting your interests.