Not renewing the lease when dealing with a lawyered up tenant

10 Replies

My tenant is lawyered up so I need to make sure there's no tricks or traps the tenant can pull when I do not renew his lease.

The tenant signed a one year lease where it stated it would end on a specific date. What kind of notice do I need to give him then?

But, things get trickier here: 

Their lease ends when I will be out of the country and so it would be better if I let them stay for another two weeks after the year lease ends when I get back even though I want them out as soon as possible. 

But, what kind of notice would I need to give them then if I let them stay for another two weeks? My concern is that if I let them stay two more weeks after that year lease ends, does it become a month to month lease even though its only supposed to be for just two weeks?

If I let them stay for 2 more weeks after the year lease notice ends, what kind of notice would I need to give them? Would I have to give them a 60 day notice?

If I need to give them a 60 day notice, when can I give it them? Can I give it them exactly 60 days before the year lease and those extra two weeks ends- ie. 46 days before that year end expires. 

Or, can I only give them a 60 day notice after the year lease ends and they begin the two week lease?

I would be VERY careful. You probably will need to eat you 2 weeks you will be out of town. I would also follow the law to the "exact" lettering! It will keep you life easier. 

Laws as to notice are generally requiring X days, more notice shouldn't be an issue, one day less is an issue. Your lease should have a notices required recital, certified mail, return receipt requested to the address of the tenant, notice effective upon the mailing.

Why did the tenant get a lawyer? A relative maybe? LOL, I wouldn't shudder in my boots over that.

Yes, if you fail to terminate properly you can go into a month to month which may require a different notice requirement.

Might be worth a hundred bucks to have your attorney write the termination letter and mail it. I wouldn't do the 2 weeks, can't someone go by there and see if they moved out?

Check the number of days you have to return any deposits too!

If you travel a lot, might consider a PM or get a Realtor on a flat fee basis to help out when you're gone. Good luck :)

@Dana R.  Can you explain what the issue is?  What does "lawyered up" mean and why does that matter?  

How do you know the tenant lawyered up?

A lot of times tenants use that as a threat to landlords, when they have never in fact spoken to a lawyer.  It doesn't sound like you have done anything wrong yet either so something isn't making sense here.

You should give the tenant sixty day notice to vacate the premise since he lived there for a year You do not need a reason. If you cannot oversee the   tenants move then they  will be on a month to month and you can serve him a 30 day notice,again no reason is needed. 

In either case you can give him a heads up that you will not be renewing the lease as a courtesy.

I wouldn't worry about the 2 weeks.  Either give notice that you're not renewing, or give 30 day notice at expiration of the lease.  If the tenant chooses to stay the extra month, you'll be back.  If not, I would do as others have stated and hire a PM or Realtor to cover me in my absence.  Here we have 2 weeks to return remaining security deposit.  You would be cutting it close. 

Pay an attorney to send a 60-day notice that the lease will expire, and they are expected to vacate the premises. 

Otherwise, if the lease is not terminated or renewed, they'll roll over into a month-to-month. If you live in a rent controlled neighborhood, a month-to-month lease can be an issue if you no longer want them as a tenant.

Good luck!

It seems like explaining the situation to your attorney and having him/her mail the notice with clear letterhead would be well worth the ~$100.

who cares about a lawyer. Do things legally and in writing and you have no problem.

With this tenant, I think its better that I eat the loss of the two weeks and not give him an extension. 

I don't know if I can turn it over to a realtor or PM while I'm gone because this tenant has a slew of tricks and its obvious this isn't his first time at the rodeo...  Instead, I think I'd need a really experienced eviction lawyer to deal with this tenant. 

To cover all my bases, should I give him simultaneously both a written notice that I will not be renewing the lease as well as 30 or 60 day notice to terminate lease so that he has to move out when the lease ends?

And, what if the tenant doesn't move out when the lease ends even though I gave him notice that I did not renew the lease? If he's staying after that fixed term lease ends, doesn't it become a month to month lease?

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