A greater aspect of keeping your rental vacancies low is finding (and keeping) good tenants. Although once in a while, things may not work out between you and your tenant. Your circumstances are probably changing, or you need to carry out particular major repairs. In such situations, one of the best things to end your current lease is through non-renewal. In the next paragraphs, we speak about the non-renewal process and a few important things you’ll need to find out to be able to handle it effortlessly.
Non-Renewal Vs. Eviction
First, it’s necessary to point out that non-renewal and eviction are two different things. Eviction is the legal process through which a landlord may remove a tenant from a rental property. This undertaking generally begins when the tenant violates one or more of the terms of their lease and oftentimes requires legal filings, court hearings, and a legal order that is completed with law enforcement removing the renter from the property.
Non-renewal, on another note, is different in that you are not forcing the tenant out. Instead, it is a decision not to renew the lease at the end of the current lease term. But, however, that is not to say that a landlord can wait until the lease term ends and then call on the tenant to vacate. Just as eviction requires certain steps to be followed, a winning non-renewal process must additionally follow the laws and regulations in your state.
The laws governing rental properties and leases vary from state to state, so it’s relevant to do your research and perceive what courses of action you must perform to ensure your non-renewal is in accordance with the law.
The Non-Renewal Process
The non-renewal process regularly gets started with a notice sent to your tenant that their lease is not being renewed. The purpose of this notice is to inform your tenant that the lease won’t be renewed at the end of their current term.
How far in advance of the lease end this notice should be sent varies since each state has different requirements on the timing of non-renewal notices. In various regions, the notice must be sent 90-days in advance of the lease’s end. In others, it may really only be 30 days. Even if you presumably don’t need to give a reason for the non-renewal, the notice must normally be delivered in writing, and in certain states, will have to be sent through certified mail or other signature-based service. You’ll need to truly understand what the law in your state requires so that you can follow all applicable regulations.
It’s equally essential not to use non-renewal for situations that require an eviction, change the terms of a lease, or raise the rent. In plenty of places, using a non-renewal notice to try and manipulate or force out a tenant is illegal. It could backfire in an expensive lawsuit, definitely when a tenant feels that they are not given adequate notice or that their lease is being terminated in violation of local law. You can keep away from legal headaches by being aware of and following the local statute to the letter.
If you have set up open communication with your tenant (and you should!), it’s necessary to continue doing so throughout the non-renewal process. Even when your tenant feels anxious or hurt by your unwillingness to renew their lease, it’s vital to maintain your professionalism all the time. By manifesting that you care about your tenant, even if you want things to end, you can surely avoid retaliatory damage or other harsh behaviors and, if things come out right, part with your tenant on good terms.
One of the appropriate ways to cope with a non-renewal situation is to hire an expert to do it for you. At Real Property Management Vesta, our Gray property managers can help you navigate through the changes in your lease, ownership status, or repairs. Learn more by contacting us online or calling at 478-257-7055 today.
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