Need some advice on current tenant situation

2 Replies

Hey everyone,

I offered one of my tenants a year lease back in May. They let me know they were in the process of looking for a house so they asked to stay m2m. My goal was to have my renewal cycle in the Spring/Summer because it can be hard to find tenants in the off season. I gave them a 3 month lease until Jul 31, requiring advanced notice if they didn't plan on renewing in August. When the time for notice came, they told me in writing they would be signing for a year beginning in August.

It's now Jul 30 and they haven't signed the new lease yet, and they just told me they are giving me 3 months notice that they will be leaving 10/31. The 3 month lease they are currently under requires 60 days notice of non renewal, but it doesn't specify whether or not that is renewal of the 3 month lease or a 1 year lease. Either way, they gave me the notice saying they would stay for 1 year.

I'm not exactly sure what to do here. Part of me wants to just say it's fine, but at the same time I'm worried about finding a new tenant during that time. Technically they're not breaking a lease because they didn't sign it yet. If they were under contract, it's my understanding that by law they'd be responsible for rent until a new tenant is placed. In the past, I've also used early termination clauses of 1 months rent. What I'm currently thinking is telling them that I can't do another 3 month lease or m2m, but they can sign a year lease and will pay the penalty for breaking it. But what's the alternative? I don't want to have to threaten eviction over this. Obviously I can't make them stay a year, and I don't expect them to now vacate instantly.

Originally posted by @Adam F. :

Hey everyone,

I offered one of my tenants a year lease back in May. They let me know they were in the process of looking for a house so they asked to stay m2m. My goal was to have my renewal cycle in the Spring/Summer because it can be hard to find tenants in the off season. I gave them a 3 month lease until Jul 31, requiring advanced notice if they didn't plan on renewing in August. When the time for notice came, they told me in writing they would be signing for a year beginning in August.

It's now Jul 30 and they haven't signed the new lease yet, and they just told me they are giving me 3 months notice that they will be leaving 10/31. The 3 month lease they are currently under requires 60 days notice of non renewal, but it doesn't specify whether or not that is renewal of the 3 month lease or a 1 year lease. Either way, they gave me the notice saying they would stay for 1 year.

I'm not exactly sure what to do here. Part of me wants to just say it's fine, but at the same time I'm worried about finding a new tenant during that time. Technically they're not breaking a lease because they didn't sign it yet. If they were under contract, it's my understanding that by law they'd be responsible for rent until a new tenant is placed. In the past, I've also used early termination clauses of 1 months rent. What I'm currently thinking is telling them that I can't do another 3 month lease or m2m, but they can sign a year lease and will pay the penalty for breaking it. But what's the alternative? I don't want to have to threaten eviction over this. Obviously I can't make them stay a year, and I don't expect them to now vacate instantly.

I'd just let them stay if I were you. Your job is to collect rent, not push out folks who pay rent to you without causing you any real problems. Sure the time they are planning on leaving is less busy than the summer season but who knows if they'll actually find their home and move out at that time. You're really splitting hairs focusing so much on when the unit goes vacant. Bigger picture here is that money is coming in. Put it in the bank until it stops coming in then at that point take action.