A Lease Termination Letter is a document that is used to notify a tenant of the landlords’ plan to end a lease agreement.
In other cases, the termination letters are used to attempt to cancel the lease agreement if the tenant is involved in any sort of misconduct. While this option doesn’t necessarily dismiss the tenant from the agreement, it gives them the warning to change their actions, lest their agreement gets terminated. Therefore, the tenant is given a second chance to solve things out.
Lease Termination Letter alternate names include:
- Notice of Terminating Tenancy
- Notice to End Tenancy
- Early Lease Termination Letter
- Release of Lease Agreement
- Notice of Lease Termination
Any lease termination letter is categorized based on type. For instance, there is an early lease termination letter and the notice to quit.
Early Lease Termination Letter: These letters can be used either by the tenant or the landlord to terminate a lease before it’s due.
Notice to Quit: Notice to quit is used by the landlord to notify tenants to vacate the premises or property due to gross misconduct or failure to make prompt rent payments.
How to Terminate a Lease
The majority of people do find it difficult to file for a lease. However, this isn’t always the case.
With the following guidelines, you will find the whole process very easy.
Step 1: Describe the lease
The first step in terminating a lease is describing the month to month lease to the relevant parties.Month to month lease is sometimes referred to as tenancy at will. Here, both the parties (tenant and landlord) are bound by the lease until one of them decides to revoke their agreement. For example, if a tenant opts to end the lease, he or she will send a notice to the landlord stating their plan to quit/cancel the lease.
Step 2: Communicate with the other party
Once you have identified the type of lease you are on, you need to have a prior communication with your landlord before sending them legal notices. Depending on your preference, you can choose to either reach them through a phone call, email, or face-to-face conversation.
Make sure you include the following reasons in your conversation:
Early termination: Explain whether there is an ongoing lease you would want to cancel before its term. Also, explain the reasons why you would want to terminate the lease early. Some of the reasons could be loss of job hence can no longer sustain paying rent. Or, both the tenant and landlord may be on bad terms or misunderstood each other.
Lease default: Also, explain whether the termination is caused by any default. Remember that default can arise either from the landlord’s side or tenants. For example, a landlord may default to fulfill their commitments as agreed in the lease. Similarly, tenants may also default their responsibilities by not paying rents as expected.
Month to month lease termination: The other thing you need to let the other party know is the lease termination period. If the lease termination period wasn’t written, then the period is automatically the State’s minimum period.
Step 3: Send the notice
Once the other party is aware of your intent, you can go ahead and send the lease termination letter. After sending, you need to be sure that the other party has received the lease termination letter. Once you’ve sent the notice, the receiving party should append their signature on it to act as an acknowledgment of receipt.
Step 4: Negotiate
When the notice is brought to the consent of the landlord, he or she will be attracted to the matter. It’s, therefore, a wise idea to talk at a personal level before involving an attorney. In case you are terminating a month-to-month agreement, then the other party should be reminded of the termination date. However, if you are terminating due to the other party’s default, both parties can discuss in-depth before involving the legal team (if necessary).
Step 5: Going the Legal Route
If both the tenant and landlord can’t reach a common agreement for whatever reasons, you can decide to take the legal route. The tenant can involve the local courts to solve the issue.
Most Common Situations for Termination
There are varied situations where a tenant may want to terminate their lease by sending a lease termination letter:
Below are some of the most common scenarios:
- When relocating due to job or marriage reasons.
- When looking for a more spacious room for your expanding family.
- If housing code violations have made it unsafe for your living.
- If the landlord has continually failed to make repairs and therefore putting blames
- If the apartments/premises are destroyed, rendering them unsafe for living
- If you are moving for a military service
- You can also leave due to family health problems such as going to attend to your sickling relative.
When terminating a lease agreement, tenants should always follow the legal procedure to avoid being penalized by the law.
Generally, a tenant will be required to provide a month-to-month lease termination notice 30 days before quitting. This will help prepare the landlord for their move out.
Writing a Lease Termination Letter
We all know the hassles and tussles one has to go through when creating a Month to monthly tenants’ lease termination letter. But this should discourage you. We have created a step-by-step guide that will ease the process for you.
There are some basic elements that are mandatory for each lease termination letter.
- Landlord: Landlord is a term that refers to the name of the individual (s) who owns the rental property.
- Tenant: The tenant is the individual (s) who rents the apartment or space.
- Original rental agreement: the original rental agreement refers to the name, start, and end date of the lease agreement.
- Vacate date: vacate date on a lease termination letter is the date a tenant is expected to leave the landlord’s premises.
- Forwarding address: forwarding address is the address where notices and security deposits are sent.
- Reason for termination: this is the explanation of why a tenant or landowner may want to end their lease agreement.
With the above information in mind, the process of creating a month to month tenants’ termination lease should seem like:
First and foremost, you need to list the information of both the landlord and the tenant in the lease termination letter.
These may include but not limited to:
- The address of the rental premise or space
- The name and address of the landlord
- The name and address of the tenant
- The forwarding address.
The tenant should always include a working forwarding address to enable them to receive their security deposits. If they don’t have an active address, he or she is free to use the address of a relative or friend.
Once the tenant has included the information of the parties, they need to note down the dates of notice. They can write the date on which they started the lease agreement and the date they intend to terminate it. Preferably, the tenant can write the date they intend to terminate the agreement at the topmost part, just below the agreement. Alternatively, they can have it written below the last signature of the document.
Move out inspection
Before you move out, it’s recommended that the landlord make the move-out inspection to ensure everything is in order. If the landlord finds any damage, they will subtract the value from the tenant’s security deposit and send him/her the remainder. Depending on the choice, they can indicate whether they will be present during the property inspection or not.
Though not a must, it’s advised that the tenant be present and help with the inspection. This will help dispute any allegations of damage hence preventing any unexpected deposit deductions. If the tenant decides to be present during the inspection, they need to inform the landowner so that they can let you know the dates and times.
Once the landlord and the team have conducted the property inspection, the final step will be releasing the security deposit to the tenant’s forwarding address. Note that only the balance after deductions are made will be released as security.
It is true writing a lease termination letter requires time and dedication. However, don’t let this consume your thoughts. We have done the hard part by creating a Lease Termination Template to make things simpler and convenient for you. All you have to do is download the templates and start filling.
Frequently Asked Questions
Is a lease termination the same as an eviction?
The majority of people often confuse the meaning of termination and eviction. However, the two do have a different meaning. Termination refers to the official communication for canceling month to month agreement. Usually, termination can either be positive or negative. For instance, if the landlord is planning to sell the rentals, he/she has to terminate the lease agreement. On the other hand, eviction is the legal action taken over a tenant who violates the tenancy agreement.
Does lease termination affect credit?
Yes. a lease termination can affect your credit if it results in unpaid debts. Also, it can make it difficult for you to qualify for another lease on new apartments.