Want to know how to write a proper eviction letter? It is a natural thing for landlords to evict their tenants, as there might be a reason for it or maybe the tenant caused it, whichever way it comes a landlord needs to draft out a quit notice which also means eviction notice.
While writing this most landlords do make a lot of mistakes all because of the anger in them or the drive behind them making the decision to evict the tenant so they just spill out what they have in them directly into the letter.
In this article, we will guide you on how to properly write a quit notice, to avoid the common mistakes other landlords make just follow our step-by-step guide.
What is an Eviction Letter?
An eviction letter is a letter written by a property owner (landlord) to his/her tenants asking him/her to move out of the property based on the initial tenancy agreement.
You might have been hearing about quit notice or notice to vacate, they are all the same as eviction letters, this kind of letter is usually given out to the tenant mostly when the landlord and his tenants couldn’t reach an agreement. Though sometimes there is a need to evict a tenant, not on the basis of misunderstanding or not being able to reach a consensus, the landlord may have other reasons to evict his tenants, though this must be done within the law of the land.
Check Out: How To Legally Evict A Tenant
When Do You Need To Issue an Eviction Letter?
Before you pick up a paper and a pen to write an eviction letter (termination of tenancy notice), you need to have an understandable reason, you can’t just write a quit letter to your tenant as there was an agreement signed by both of you (tenancy agreement) and if the obligations of the tenant is being duly carried out then evicting such tenant may be a bit difficult except if you have a different reason.
If it is because of a dispute between the tenant and the landlord then this could be resolved, if the tenant defaults in damages fix, security fee, utility payment or other tenant obligations then there are ways to handle this and even reach a lasting resolution.
The landlord can also give the tenant an opportunity to meet up with his own end of the agreement by issuing a “Pay or Quit” notice which lasts for a week. All this is just to make sure issues are settled.
Nevertheless, there may be no other option than the tenant should leave the said property, e.g. when the property will no longer be used as a place of residence when the landlord is compelled to sell his property for one reason or the other and so many understandable reasons then the tenant has no other option than to leave the property.
So, when writing a quit notice the landlord has to clearly state the reason for such eviction.
Writing The Eviction Letter
After every option has been exhausted then issuing a quit notice is the next step to take, to do that legally and properly it has to be done in a formal way i.e. putting it in black and white based on the laws of the land. Note that this will serve as your evidence as some tenants can be so difficult so you do not regret your actions as a landlord.
Drafting an eviction letter has to be done with patience, you need a settled mind and you also need to point out your reasons clearly and at the same time you mind what you put in the letter so it won’t be used against you by your tenant and also to avoid delays so you don’t want to make any mistake.
Without further ado let us go straight to the topic of the day which is how to write an eviction letter and issue it to your tenant.
How To Write An Ideal Eviction Letter
#1. Must be addressed to the name on the tenancy agreement
In writing an eviction letter you need to first start by addressing the letter to the name your tenant used on the tenancy agreement. You do not want to use a name that could sound offensive to the tenant in question and also your writing should be done when you are in your right senses without allowing anger to influence your words. After doing that do not forget to retain a copy of the letter.
#2. Inform the tenant of the quit notice
Now that the first step has been properly handled it is necessary you notify the tenant about the eviction, in the next line you have to state the reason(s) for the eviction and should be written in a simple way that a layman can easily understand after reading.
#3. Be direct and concise
You do not want to write a textbook just because you want to evict your tenant, you do not need big dictionaries to sieve out grammar, your text has to be very plain, direct and also short. This is a formal letter and you should just follow the simple way of writing it, when you start writing too much you will fall off the reason for the letter and unnecessary things might be written which you do not want.
You also do not want to exchange pleasantries as this isn’t needed in this form of letter writing, you can easily use a direct sentence like this: You are hereby required to evacuate the 3 bedroom flat (apartment) you currently occupy no later than 1st of September 2022.
#4. Give reasons for the eviction
You need to state clearly the reason why you want to evict the tenant, in cases where you don’t mind still having the tenant but you just want him to fix some damages then there could be a fix carried out on seeing this which will enable the tenant to continue using the apartment and the eviction process terminated. So, if the reasons can be reversed you want to give your tenant the opportunity to work on it and in cases whereby there is no way the eviction can be avoided then you need to be direct and clear on the listed reasons.
You can proceed with your letter by including reasons for evicting a tenant, here are some clues which may be useful:
- Stealing of personal properties of other tenants with evidence to back it up
- Constant dispute with other tenants or people in the community
- Failure to pay rent
- The damage of properties
- Illegal use of the property
- Not carrying out obligations stated in the tenancy agreement
#5. Eviction Date & Time should be included
After all has been well written never forget to include the date and time you want the tenant out of your property, mind you, it is necessary you need to know the eviction period of your state as it varies, Lagos state allows tenants to enjoy a six months time before vacating so you tenant have at most six months to prepare and get things in order for his next apartment.
#6. Keep a copy of the letter
You need to have your own copy of the letter and keep it safe, this will serve as a reference in case the matter is being taken to the court, you do not want to experience the negative side of this.
#7. Serve your tenant the eviction notice
Now that everything has been properly done and you have a copy of the letter you can then proceed to serve your tenant the eviction notice, it is best advised that you give the letter to your tenant in person or rather just give it to any of the members of his family above the age of 18.
That’s it, if you follow the steps listed above then you should have a well-written quit notice which you will hand to your tenant.
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