July 18th, 2018
When a tenant moves out of your rental property they are required to give you advanced written notice. This is to prevent you, as the landlord, from winding up with vacancy that cuts into your profits. There are certain regulations that determine how advanced the notice a tenant provides must be.
The length of notice your tenant is legally required to give is determined by the lease they’ve signed, and is usually influenced by how long the agreement is for.
Month-to-month: Those who are renting on a month-to-month basis are usually required to give at least 60 days’ notice before the last day of the rental period.
Year-long lease: Those in the first year of an annual lease (before it becomes month-to-month) are still required to give at least 60 days’ notice before the last day of the lease otherwise the lease automatically renews on a month to month basis.
There are some exceptions to the rules above, where tenants do not need to follow the schedule determined by each type of rental agreement.
February: Because February is a short month, it alters the number of days needed for notice. A tenant is able to give 60 days notice, minus the days missing in February. If, for example, they give notice on January 1, they would be eligible to move out February 28, which would be a 59-day span.
Breaking a Lease: A tenant and landlord can mutually agree to break a lease at any point in time. This decision must be mutual and it is recommended to have Form N11: Agreement to End the Tenancy signed by all parties.
Abuse: If your tenant is the victim of any sort of abuse, no matter what your rental agreement is, they are able to give 28 days’ notice before vacating.
If you provide your Tenant with Form N12/Form N13: Notice to End your Tenancy they have the legal right to provide you with just 10 days’ notice to terminate at an early date by providing Form N9: Tenants Notice to End the Tenancy. Please note that if the tenant chooses this option, you are responsible to return any prepaid rental amounts back to them.
It is important to note that if your tenant gives a move out date, but has not moved out by the date specified, you are allowed to serve an eviction notice.
It is also important to note that departure date provided must reflect the rental period. For example, a typical period ends on the last day of a month, so your tenant cannot give 60 days’ notice on the 20th.
To give notice, a tenant needs to inform you in writing. The best way to accomplish this is with a N9 form that your tenant can fill out. It is a legal document that covers all the pertinent information needed.
While it is highly recommended that a tenant uses the N9 form, they are able to write their own termination notice. If they choose to go that route, make sure that they have included the following information:
· The address of the unit they are moving out of
· The date that they are moving out
· Their signature validating that they are vacating
· The date that they signed the notice
As a landlord, you should be aware of the terms outlined in your rental agreement regarding termination. This is the easiest way to avoid an unpleasant surprise, and to understand your recourse when a tenant neglects to abide by the proper terms.