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How to Write a Notice to Vacate Letter to Your Landlord

November 29, 2018

The time has come to move out of your apartment. One of the first things you need to do is give your landlord an official notification of your intent to end your lease. Whether you are relocating for a new job or simply moving to an awesome new rental property down the street, you’re going to need to write a notice to vacate and submit your letter to your landlord.

What is a notice to vacate

A notice to vacate, or a notice of intent to vacate, is a written notice/letter to your landlord that you intend to end your lease and vacate your apartment or home. A notice of intent to vacate can be given for any length of lease, including month-to-month leases, short-term, annual, or beyond. An official vacate notice can be given or required even for leases that have an official end date.

Landlords can also give a tenant a notice to vacate, also known as a 30-day notice, 60-day notice, 3-day notice or notice to quit.

When to give a notice to vacate

When determining when to give your notice to vacate, always read your lease agreement first. The notice period should be clearly stated in your rental agreement, so make sure you are following protocol. A 30-day notice is most common, but a 60-day notice or 90-day notice may be required by your landlord.

Notice to vacate letter template

[Your phone number]

[Your Current Address]

[City, State, Zip Code]

[Landlord's Name Or Apartment Company’s Name]

[Landlord's Address as stated on your lease]

[City, State, Zip Code]

Re: Notice of Intent to Vacate

Dear [Landlord's name/Property Manager's name/Apartment Manager's name],
As per my rental agreement, I am providing this letter as a [##]-day notice that I will be moving out of my rental unit on [date], ending my lease that began on [date]. This letter shall serve as my written notice of intent to vacate the premises.
[In case you are breaking the lease because there are issues with the apartment, state them here]_Please contact me at [phone number] in order to schedule a walk-through inspection. I expect my security deposit of [$ amount] to be refunded in full as my apartment is being left in good condition. Please send my deposit to my forwarding address: [new address].
If any other issues or questions arise after I move, I can be reached at
[phone number] or [email]_.

Sincerely,

[Your Name]

Need to fill out your own Notice to Vacate Letter? Download the template here.

Just make a copy, fill in the highlighted fields with your information and you’re set. Or simply copy and paste the sample letter above!

Additional tips for giving your notice to vacate

  • Before writing the letter, make sure you read through your lease agreement. This may include the designated terms for moving out and will give you a good idea of how to manage this process. If you are breaking your lease, the terms for this should be stated there as well.
  • For your contact information, include both your current and new forwarding addresses for security deposit delivery. If you kept your place in good condition, you should have a nice sum of cash coming your way.
  • Include the date to verify that you are delivering the notice within the designated time frame outlined by your rental agreement.
  • Keep it simple and clear while providing specific details.
  • Be formal and polite.
  • Know your landlord-tenant laws and your rights in case you are breaking the lease - state your reasons.
  • If you are not sending over an email or personally delivering the letter, send it by certified mail. Remember, your landlord's goal is to have a new tenant moving in ASAP. Giving a notice to vacate in a timely manner and in advance is important to maintain good standing with your landlord and keep your rental history squeaky clean.

What is a notice to vacate from landlord to tenant

Oftentimes, the term “notice to vacate” also refers to a lease termination letter written by a landlord to a tenant. A landlord notice to vacate letter is a written notice given by a landlord to a tenant in order to terminate their tenancy.

When should landlords send tenants a notice to vacate

A landlord notice to vacate can be used in the following cases:

  1. Before the end of a fixed-term lease if the landlord doesn’t wish to renew it.
  2. To terminate a periodic tenancy such as month-to-month tenancy.
  3. To remove a tenant that hasn’t vacated the property after the expiration of the rental agreement. 

What are the types of notices a landlord can give to terminate a lease

  1. A 30-day notice is required by most fixed-term rental agreements and by month-to-month leases in most states. In California, however, a 30-day notice can be given to tenants on a month-to-month lease only in case if a tenant has lived on the property for less than a year.
  2. A 60-day notice is required by California law if a tenant has lived in the rental unit for a year or more.
  3. A 90-day notice is required by California law if the tenant lives in subsidized housing (Section 8). In this case, the landlord must provide a reason for the termination of tenancy.
  4. A 3-day notice is used in case a tenant violates a rental agreement by not paying rent on time, moving in a pet without permission, etc. This notice can be conditional, such as “3-Day Notice to Perform Covenants or Quit” and “3-Day Notice to Pay Rent or Quit,” or final.

Should a 30-day or 60-day notice to vacate include a reason for the lease termination

Typically, a landlord doesn’t have to provide a reason when giving a landlord notice to vacate to a tenant. In fact, if a landlord does include a reason, in some states they then might have to prove the reason in court. 

Is a landlord notice to vacate the same as eviction notice

No, unlike a notice to vacate from landlord to tenant, an eviction letter is a court order and appears on a tenant’s credit report.

By: Sania Tran
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