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How do I Write an Eviction Letter?

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  • Written By: Tara Barnett
  • Edited By: Melissa Wiley
  • Last Modified Date: 10 November 2016
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Writing an eviction letter is largely a matter of informing tenants of the law in order to protect one's own rights. An eviction letter should include all relevant information and only that information. It is absolutely essential to include the date that the tenant must vacate the premise, the reason for the eviction, and a citation of the relevant laws that governs how long the tenant has a right to stay. In some countries, the law does not protect tenants, and an eviction letter is not necessary. Where tenants have rights, local legal agencies can usually provide advice about how to compose an eviction letter.

To begin, one must put one's name and the date on the letter. It is important to address the tenants by name as well. There is no need to include informal salutations in an eviction letter.

First, the letter should contain information about why the tenants are being evicted. If the tenants are being evicted due to a breach of the lease agreement, for example, it is important to make sure to clearly document in the letter what the infraction was. One must make note of the exact place in the lease where this information can be found. If the tenants are being evicted for not paying rent, one should state how long the rent has not been paid.

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Next, the eviction letter should request that the tenants vacate the premises within a certain number of days. The relevant laws on the number of days necessary can be found at a local courthouse or even a library. Making reference to these laws will make the letter sound more official and will ensure that the tenant realizes the gravity of the situation. If other actions must be taken as well, such as cleaning the house or removing plants, these should be listed in this section also.

It may be a good idea to include a warning in the letter about what will happen if the tenant does not leave. If one intends to call the police, for example, this should be listed in the letter. It is not legally necessary to do this, but it may be advisable because doing so might prevent the tenant from resisting the eviction.

The letter should end with a formal valediction and one's name. The entire letter should be typed, but it should also be signed by hand. Using a professional font and business stationary for the letter will make it look official. In essence, an eviction notice should be treated like any other professional document and should represent the business that is sending it.

After the letter has been written, one must make a copy for one's records and have the letter delivered by hand to the tenants. It is not necessary for the landlord to deliver the letter personally, but it is important that the tenants cannot claim that they never received the letter. If tenants ignore the letter, the copy that has been made will be important for court proceedings concerning the eviction. The possibility that the document can be used in legal proceedings makes it especially important to use formal language in the letter and include no threats, unreasonable language, or evidence of personal conflicts.

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bythewell
Post 3

@Fa5t3r - It can actually be annoying how strict the laws are in some places as to what a landlord can do to get rid of a tenant. My current landlord is absolutely lovely and she's always telling me how awful the last guy who had my room was. He never paid rent on time and always left the kitchen in a mess and did other things as well, but never enough that she could actually tell him to go because there was no legal grounds, even though she didn't like having him there.

Luckily he left on his own. I know that some landlords can be very shady but it goes both ways in some cases.

Fa5t3r
Post 2

@browncoat - It depends on the tenants, I guess. It also depends on the rental agreement. If you've got a lot of money down for the bond you aren't going to take any chances on that by smashing a window on your way out.

Getting a letter of eviction sucks no matter why you're getting it. But if you're unsure of the laws around it, try to do some research because most of the time a landlord can't just throw you out without a good reason.

browncoat
Post 1

If you are evicting the tenants because you need the property for another reason, it is much nicer to just tell them what is going on, as well as sending them an official landlord eviction letter as a follow-up. I know it seems hard because people don't like to be confrontational, but it's so much nicer for the tenant if you are just straight with them about needing the place for your elderly mother or whatever the reason is.

They are also much less likely to be passive aggressive about it when they move out. I've never done that myself, but I've had friends who would do everything they could to make life difficult for a landlord who was kicking them out.

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