Moving to a new place is always enlivening, but before you start packing up and moving out of your current home, you must first deliver a notice to vacate to fulfill the legal requirements of your rental agreement. Failure to which, you may end up facing lawsuits or losing your security deposit. In this article, we’ll be giving you the best tips on how and when to tell your landlord you are moving out. We have also included a sample template and a sample letter below to help you find just the right words and learn how to write a 30-day notice.
What is a Notice to Vacate?
A notice to vacate, also known as a lease termination letter, is a letter drafted and delivered by the tenant to the landlord, giving notice that they will be leaving the residence within a specified amount of time, in this case, 30days. Depending on your terms of the agreement, you may be required to give a 30 or 60-days’ notice or other time frames as specified in your lease agreement.
How to Hand-in Your Notice
Over you’ve made the decision that you will be moving out and determined how far according to your lease agreement, you must let your landlord know, you will need to give your 30-day notice by writing a lease termination letter. Before you start drafting your letter, it is important that you follow these steps to ensure that you are adhering to your rental lease agreement:
Step 1: Reading your Rental Agreement
The first thing to do when writing a notice to your landlord is to read and understand the lease agreement that you signed when moving in. Go through the letter and understand everything that is contained within it. Many apartments that rent out to tenants on a month-to-month basis usually require that you give them a 30-day notice to vacate. However, this could vary depending on your lease agreement. For example, in some cases, you may be required to give a 2-week notice, 60-day notice, or any other time frame; you will need to read and understand the lease agreement and make sure that you follow it strictly.
If you signed a lease agreement promising to stick around for a specified length of time and you decide to terminate the agreement before it’s up, makes sure to first discuss with your landlord to see if you can arrive at an agreeable solution that will pave the way for you to vacate without having to lose your security deposit or incur other penalties.
Step 2: Put It in Writing
The next thing to do is to now make it official by putting your intent to vacate the premise in writing. If you don’t have a computer, go to the library or find someone that does – you don’t want to handwrite your notice because it leaves open the chance for someone to misread what you wrote.
By following the template given below, you will be able to cover all the areas needed to satisfy your agreement with the landlord. The template includes all the straight forward information your landlord needs to approve your notice to vacate.
It is important that your landlord receives a hard copy of the 30-day notice instead of sending them a digital copy. By giving them a hard copy, you eliminate the “I did not see or receive the notice” excuse.
Step 3: Deliver your notice
Even though we have already determined that the best way for you to deliver the notice is with a hard copy, there are still two more options that you may want to consider.
The easiest and the most convenient way to ensure that your landlord receives your notice is by handing it over in person. This way, there is no room for mystery or wondering when the news will reach them. Delivering the notice in person also gives you a chance to explain or clarify anything right away, thereby avoiding any further delays.
On the other hand, you might consider sending the notice by mail. This is also a good option, particularly if you have the letter certified and require the letter to be signed upon receipt. This ensures that the notice is delivered to the right recipient.
Step 4: Keep a Record
Create a copy of the notice to vacate and keep it for your records. If you will be sending the letter to an out-of-state address, ensure that you allow an extra seven days for it to travel through the mail before it is received. You might also want to consider sending the notice with delivery confirmation so that you have proof that the letter was delivered to the right person.
Notice Samples & Examples
Template: Notice to Vacate
________________ [Your Name]
________________ [Your Address]
________________ [City State, Zip Code]
________________ [Landlord’s/ Property management company name]
________________ [City, State, Zip Code]
Re: Notice to Vacate the Premise
Dear ________________ [landlord/property manager]
This letter is my 30-day notice that I will be vacating the apartment on _ [date], the end of my current lease. I am vacating due to (state your reason) (If there are any problems with the apartment, let the landlord know in this section) Kindly advise me on when my security deposit of [amount] will be returned. Also, inform me if you will be making any deductions to the amount for damages that fall outside of the normal wear and tear.
You can reach me at ________________ [Phone number], [Your Forwarding Address]
________________ [Your Name]
________________ [Apartment Number]
Things to Keep in Mind
Professionalism – Use professional and concise language that delivers your message in a way that is both coherent and informative, without being unnecessarily flowery, hostile, or long-winded.
Simplicity – Keep your lay out and formatting simple, elegant and clean. Elaborate designs and complicated fonts are to be avoided.
Relevance – Ensure you stick to the message you are trying to convey without getting diverted into unnecessary details that do not relate to the specific details of your notice.
Informative – Layout your preferred terms of notice in a way that is firm and clear to prevent any ambiguity. Uncertainty or complexity leaves room for confusion or interpretation.
Call to action – Ensure that you detail the exact dates, location, or position about which you are giving notice and inform the addressee of what they need to do next. Make sure they are aware of any action that needs to be taken on their part.
Frequently Asked Questions
What is a landlord’s notice to vacate?
The same way you send your landlord notice, your landlord can also send you a notice. The landlord’s notice to vacate means that you, as a tenant, must move out by a specific date. A 30-day notice to vacate is a general requirement by most landlords, but you must first check your lease agreement and the laws governing tenancy and lease termination in your state to find out the requirements where you live.
When can my landlord send me a notice to vacate?
A landlord’s notice to vacate isn’t the same as an eviction notice. Normally, a landlord will send a notice to vacate when:
• You have a month-to-month lease
• The lease is ending
• The lease has expired, and you haven’t left the property
How does a notice to vacate work?
A notice to vacate/lease termination letter announces to your landlord your plans to vacate the premises within a specified period.
Can I rescind my notice if I change my mind?
After you’ve made your decision to move out and you have issued your landlord with a notice, you will have to discuss with your landlord although they are not bound to allow you to stay. Once you’ve issued your notice the landlord may begin looking for a new tenant, so your options may become limited very quickly.