As a landlord, you may have questions about the legal documents you need to either bring tenants into compliance with the lease, evict them or do other things. There are three varieties of notices for landlords, only one of which is to evict a tenant. A legal notice should be presented if you are aiming to raise the rent or enter the premises.
Each state is entirely different from the others, though many or most have similar landlord-tenant laws. Three general rules of thumb apply across the board for setting forth the legal ways for handling your tenants. Below we list three of the most common and necessary notices that landlords need to understand. And you most likely already know that if you do not handle them properly, you may end up in a legal hassle.
These are some of the most common notices:
Notice to Pay or Quit and Unconditional Quit Notice
One of the main pitfalls for a landlord is tenants who are unable to pay rent regularly. The notice demands one of two things: Pay the rent, or the tenant moves out. With this type of notice, you legally notify the tenant that if the violation is not remedied inside a set time, they are going to receive an eviction notice warning.
Different states have different laws concerning the eviction method for unpaid or late rent. In some states, the notice is the legal initiation of eviction. In other states, you need to send a Notice to Pay or Quit before the process of eviction begins. To read more about the process in California, you may visit this site: https://expressevictions.com/california-eviction-notices/.
This notice does not provide you with permission to cut off utilities or change the locks. These two moves are illicit and are considered “self-help eviction.” You can kick tenants out through the formal, legal eviction method only. And even then, it is exclusively county sheriff’s deputies who are legally mandated to make the eviction happen.
Unlike other notices, an unconditional quit notice does not have an option to remedy a violation. The tenant must leave. The following are cases in which a landlord may serve an unconditional quit notice:
- The tenant has repeatedly violated a lease term.
- The tenant was involved in criminal activity on the premises, like dealing drugs.
- The tenant repeatedly did not pay rent on time.
- The tenant has caused serious damage that cannot be repaired.
- Not all states permit the use of this type of notice, though, because it is considered the harshest of all the notices. And even states that do allow it typically impose strict conditions.
Notice to Cure or Quit the Premises
This notice informs the tenant that a particular behavior should cease inside a specific amount of time or else they face eviction. Not like the unconditional quit notice, the notice to cure or quit offers the tenant the option of moving out or fixing the violation.
You can then evict the tenant if they fail to fix the violation in the specific time. Often, the common lease violations are:
- Keeping pets if the lease does not allow it.
- Subletting the rental unit.
- Having unapproved roommates.
- Using the property in a manner prohibited by a lease.
The tenant may stay on the property as long as the violation is fixed.
Notice of Intent to Enter The Tenant’s Unit
If you are planning on entering the rental premises, most states need you to produce a written notice of intent to your tenant. This suggests that you still need to provide notice even if you happen to be on the grounds.
You may only enter a tenant’s housing unit under the following circumstances:
- When the tenant consents to the entry. The should be present at the time of your entry.
- Entry is consistent with a judicial writ.
- During emergency circumstances.
- The tenant has either given up or abandoned the premises.
- To make pre-arranged repairs.
- To inspect.
- To show the rental unit to buyers.
- The entry should be during traditional business hours.
- The notice should state the time, date, and reason for entry.
Being a landlord may be tough. You have to be ready for anything. If you use an intensive tenant-screening method, a good majority of tenants will be quiet, clean, and polite. Even so, chances are at some point you could encounter a complicated tenant.