Landlords and tenants are two parties to a lease agreement that defines their interactions and responsibilities within a given time frame or lease period. Consequently, the landlord cannot kick the tenant out or the tenant leave the property before the lease period is over. They must wait for the contract to end then send a notice informing the other party that they will not be renewing it. This notice is called a NOT Renewing Lease Letter.
What Is a NOT Renewing Lease Letter?
A NOT Renewing Lease Letter, or notice of non-renewal of lease, is a formal document that notifies a landlord or tenant beforehand that the sender does not wish to renew the current rental agreement. It is usually sent when the current lease is about to expire and must provide the recipient with sufficient notice, as specified by state laws. Usually, the document also includes details about the last-day inspection of the property and security deposit return.
Important: A landlord or tenant can decide to not renew a lease for any reason besides retribution or prejudice.
Non-Renewal Lease Letter (Word Template)
When to Use
Generally, a NOT renewing lease notice helps a landlord regain possession of their property so they can use it for something else or rent it to another tenant. Consequently, there is no shortage of reasons a landlord may send the letter. Some of the most common causes include:
- Property manager changes
- Property ownership changes
- Property overhaul
- Tenant being late on payments or not paying at all
- Planned property repairs
- Unresolved lease violations
How to Write (Step-by-Step)
Most landlords have a NOT Renewing Lease Letter template to help them terminate rental agreements. Even so, these notices are highly personal and must be customized to fit the tenant’s situation. Here is a guide to help you prepare a relevant letter:
Step 1: Date the Letter
The date is very important in a Not renewing lease letter because most states have notice requirements for canceling a rental agreement. You must be able to prove that you have the tenant enough notice before terminating their lease – this requires that you date your letter.
Step 2: Identify the Sender
Next, identify yourself, so the tenant knows the origin of the notice. This letter is usually prepared by a landlord or their property manager, so specify this in the address. You should also provide your contact information, mailing address, and full name.
Step 3: Identify the Recipient
Below your address, indicate the recipient’s full name as presented in the lease agreement. Their mailing address will be that of the property they currently occupy. Supply a subject line that goes something like ‘Notice to Not Renew Lease.’
Step 4: Indicate the Property Address
Lease agreements are very particular, and you should be too. Find the original lease and transcribe the lease dates and lease periods of the current agreement. Next to the words ‘For the property located at…’ record the physical address of the leased property.
Step 5: Supply the Termination Date
Here, explain your intent to not renew the lease agreement and indicate the effective termination date. Make sure you refer to the original lease and your state’s law’s so you give the tenant proper notice. You should also briefly mention your reason for terminating the lease.
Step 6: Execute the Letter
You don’t have to go into detail about your reason for the non-renewal, but it is customary to mention it for proper record should a dispute arise. Once this is done, sign the letter to execute it.
Sample – Non-Renewal Lease Letter
August 2, 2031
100 Abraham Road
Lansing, MI, 30090
Re: Notice to Not Renew Lease
Tenant: Mary Watkins
This is to notify you that I will not be renewing your current lease for the property located at 100 Abraham Road, Lansing, MI 30090. Your last day of tenancy will be September 2, 2031.
Please vacate the property on your last day upon returning all fobs, keys, and similar devices to the landlord. Avoid leaving any of your personal possessions on the premises.
Per your lease, you should leave the property in the same position it was in when you moved in while accounting for normal wear and tear. The landlord shall check that you have met these terms on the last day during a walk-through inspection.
Kindly provide the landlord with your forwarding address where your security deposit will be sent.
Jewel Property Managers
How to Use
Generally, every state has laws on how and when to use a not renewing lease letter, which you should follow to the letter. In addition, here are some pointers about terminating a lease:
- Always give the tenant notice before terminating their lease. The typical timeline is usually 30 to 60 days, but this will depend on where you live.
- Have your property manager inspect and take pictures of the apartment on the tenant’s last day and settle any property damage claims with the tenant before they leave.
- Get the tenant’s mailing addresses where they wish to receive their security deposit.
How to Write (Step-by-Step)
As mentioned, you must give the tenant enough notice before the termination date by sending the letter in advance. Doing this allows them enough time to find a new place to live. Here is how to send a not renewing lease letter and terminate a rental agreement:
Step 1: Review the Lease
Check the original lease to verify when it is supposed to end and send the letter in line with the notice requirements in your state. You should also make a list of the appliances and furniture the tenant must leave on the property, which you will use during the final inspection.
Step 2: Draft the Letter
Use the guide in this article to draft the letter and send it via email or standard mail. Remember, you don’t need to go into detail about your reasons, but it is a good idea to document it in case discrimination claims arise.
Step 3: Inspect the Property
Inspect the premises for damage and document any that don’t account for normal wear and tear. Take pictures and have the tenant sign a move-out checklist.
Step 4: Send the Security Deposit
Get the tenant’s mailing address and process their security deposit within the state-given timelines. If there was damage to the property, have it appraised and deduct it from the deposit
The NOT Renewing Lease Letter helps a landlord or tenant terminate a current rental agreement in advance. Most states dictate when this letter must be sent to be enforceable, which is usually 3o to 60 days before the lease is due to end. Additionally, there are laws against using discrimination or retaliation as a reason for terminating a lease. Landlord and tenants should be careful to follow all state requirements to the letter to avoid legal repercussions.