As a landlord, you need to be prepared for anything. While the vast majority of tenants will be quiet, clean and polite (for the most part); almost every landlord that has been around for a while will have a story about at least one tricky customer.
Whether you have a drummer in a rock band who insists on playing loudly into the small hours, a tenant who is flagrantly subletting your apartment or someone who thinks they’re entitled to redecorate the property… you need to be ready to respond.
Then there are the situations where the tenant is perfectly pleasant but you need to change the terms of your contract for whatever reason. Again, you need to know how to proceed in order to secure the best deal for everyone involved.
Fortunately, landlords are not without their rights and by providing the right notice, you can ensure that tenants don’t take advantage. Here are several of the most important types of notice you can use to remove a difficult resident so that you can offer your home to someone more deserving, or simply to negotiate a better deal…
Notice of Non-Renewal
This is simply a notice that you will not be offering a renewal to your tenants once their contract is up. This is a form of ‘no-cause eviction’ meaning that you don’t need any reason to end the contract.
Offer of Renewal
This offer simply means that you’re extending the option for your tenants to renew their contract and extend their stay.
Notice of Rent Increase
A notice of rent increase simply means you wish to increase the cost of rent. This is a balancing act of course because you don’t want to drive your tenants away. And if you do take this option, you’ll need to provide around 30-60 days of notice depending on your state.
Notice to Pay or Quit
This is a notice that simply informs the tenant that they must either pay their rent or leave within a certain time frame. You are not permitted to alter the locks, or to cut off utilities but if the tenant should ignore the notice, then you can go through the formal eviction process to have them removed.
The amount of notice you must give will vary from state to state, but generally it is fairly low at around 3-5 days.
Notice to Cure or Quit
This option is available if the tenant has violated a term or condition in the contract. That may mean that they are subletting the apartment for instance or that they are keeping pets. The tenant now has X amount of time in order to stop their behaviour or vacate the premises. This is also where you would address disruptive behaviour.
Unconditional Quit Notice
An unconditional quit notice is similar to the above except that there is no option to remedy the situation. That is to say; they must leave even if they get rid of their pet or pay the rent. This option is open to you if:
- Your tenant has been late paying more than once
- The tenant has caused damage to your property that cannot be fixed
- The tenant was involved in serious illegal activity
- The tenant has repeatedly violated terms in the contract
Ultimately, some tenants are just more hassle than they are worth and so you might not wish to deal with them anymore. Note however that this option is not available in all states.
There are many more notices that property owners and managers should be aware of, but these are a few of the biggest. Familiarizing yourself and working with a team with years of experience handling such matters is always a good investment.