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What Is a Notice to Vacate? What Landlords Need to Know

System - Thursday, December 8, 2022
Property Management Blog

Landlords will evict approximately 2.7 million tenants in 2022. Of course, an eviction is the last resort a landlord uses, yet it is necessary in many cases.

You should give them the notice to vacate when you evict a tenant. A notice to vacate is a letter you write and give to the tenant to notify them to move out.

However, landlords also issue these letters for other reasons. 

If you're a landlord, you'll need to understand this letter, how to write it, and when you need it. So keep reading this guide to learn these things.

What Is a Notice to Vacate?

A written notice to vacate is a lease termination letter a landlord gives a tenant. This letter is always in written form, and a tenant may or may not be expecting it.

The primary purpose of this letter is to inform a tenant they must vacate the rental property. This letter is a legal requirement that landlords must complete under certain circumstances. 

When Do You Use It?

Landlords use this letter in several circumstances. First, they might use it when tenants can't pay their rent. They can write a letter asking the tenant to leave. 

For example, if you decide not to renew a tenant's lease, you can send the tenant a notice to vacate. You might do this if you're selling the property. You might also do this if you want to move into the property. 

You could also send a notice to vacate if you decide to renovate the property and need it vacant. Additionally, landlords send this notice when the tenants aren't paying their rent or causing problems with the rental property. 

What Should It Include?

A notice to vacate letter is a relatively simple letter to write. You can write it yourself by including the necessary things or use a notice to vacate template.

Here are the main things the letter should include:

  • Tenant's name
  • Rental property address
  • Request to vacate
  • The date they must vacate by
  • Reasons for your request to vacate

It would help if you considered sending the notice through certified mail or hand delivering the letter to ensure the tenant receives it. 

Can You Use It to Evict Someone?

One last thing to know is the difference between a notice to vacate vs. eviction. While many laws list landlords' rights, you can't legally evict someone with this notice. 

You can ask the tenant to leave with this notice, but the tenant can choose to ignore the letter.

To evict a person, you must go through the legal eviction process. In other words, you can't use a notice to vacate as a substitute for eviction. 

Learn More About Writing a Notice to Vacate

Managing your rental properties is a tough job. While you can manage them yourself, you might need to hire a property management firm to help you with some tasks.

Property managers can help with maintenance, tenant relations, and assistance with writing a notice to vacate when necessary. 

Contact us if you're in the Tampa area and need property management services. We'd love to hear from you and help you manage your rental properties.