can i terminate a lease at the end of the lease term?

9 Replies

location: San Jose, California

My tenant's lease is up on May 31st and I would like to terminate his lease / to not continue another term, although his rent is up to date and his job is not impacted by covid.

I gave him the termination notice and he said he would take legal action against me because I should not terminate the lease due to covid. It looks like they will have to apply for eviction protection? such as https://www.cdc.gov/coronaviru... And the protection ends at the end of June 2021?

I looked up online and it seems like all the advise are for "eviction". I am not quite sure if this falls into the eviction category. And he has always paid rent and did not lose his job. I just have other personal issues with him. Can i still tell him to leave by the end of May?

Thank you :) 

As a landlord you are allowed to terminate the lease whenever you want. But its strange that a tenant that pays on time and does not have issues is still causing problems. Good tenants are hard to find so I would still try to work something out and see if you can continue. It would be tough to find a tenant now a days who is not affected by COVID so there is no guarantee the next tenant would be the best one. Good luck though! 

Originally posted by @Aj Parikh :

As a landlord you are allowed to terminate the lease whenever you want. But its strange that a tenant that pays on time and does not have issues is still causing problems. Good tenants are hard to find so I would still try to work something out and see if you can continue. It would be tough to find a tenant now a days who is not affected by COVID so there is no guarantee the next tenant would be the best one. Good luck though! 

Thank you so much, Aj! I really appreciate it. :) 

I totally understand your point that a tenant that can pay is hard to find. But the issues with this tenant are something bigger that I can no longer live with :( I would rather lose that income than dealing with it daily.

i am curious if they can really take any legal action against that, like they said they would... i don't think they are even qualified for the protection but that's something I am no expert at

 

@Jasmine NA

What's does your lease state on NON-RENEWAL at the end of Natural Lease Term? This section describes the process when lease term ends, the lease will convert to month-to-month, the rent will increase by 5%, etc.

Also instructions for Landlord and Tenant for Notifications when no renewing.

Termination though correct terminology in today's environment it's invokes eviction. Look into your Non-Renewal rights.

Also if the condition you can no longer live with is a lease violation that is a different matter.

@Jasmine NA

Terminating a lease is not eviction. You aren’t really terminating it. The lease term is just over and you are choosing not to renew it.

Ultimately there is nothing stopping a tenant from pursuing legal action. There will be some attorney out there that will take the case to try and make a buck.

Sounds like there is a much bigger story here, but if the tenant is threatening legal action, then you should get your attorney involved.

Best of luck to you!

@Jasmine NA

I’m in WA state and have been working with my property manager. As the WA state proclamation states you cannot give them notice to vacate even if the lease term is up during the eviction moratorium. Unless you plan to personally occupy the property or sell it. I would consult an attorney or trusted property manager in the area before you send anything.

This is not an eviction. Even if it were, the eviction moratorium only protects individuals who's income is impacted by COVID. Your tenant is still paying rent in full and on time, so they clearly don't meet the guidelines.

Go back to the "General Landlording & Rental Properties" forum and there's a thread with the CDC checklist you can use with the Tenant to determine if they qualify. 

Again, you are simply terminating the lease on the agreed date. It has nothing to do with eviction.

@Jasmine NA If you are just trying to end the lease and not renew, you don't have to explain anything to the tenant. It's definitely not an eviction. 

It's going to depend on your state. In normal times non renewals are straight forward. You are under no obligation to continue leasing to someone after the lease period. But in some states judges aren't granting non renewals. Ask an attorney in your area if judges are granting non renewals.