What Is a Lease Termination Letter?
A Lease Termination Letter is a notice warning that a lease or rental agreement between the landlord and the tenant is coming to an end. This is not a simple statement that the period of rent is expiring. Usually, the landlord decides to terminate the lease for a number of reasons, such as the tenant violated some of the terms of the rental arrangement, failed to pay rent or there may have been a situation that makes the residence unsuitable for living. The reasons do not have to be all that negative, e.g. the landlord may decide to sell the place, the tenant may be moving for a new job or marriage, or need a larger space to welcome new children or pets.
You can end a lease in one of the following ways: either send a letter to terminate tenancy unilaterally, matters not if you are a landlord or a tenant, or you can come to an agreement and sign a termination contract. You may have heard of the lease termination by other names, for example, an early lease termination letter, a notice of lease termination or notice of terminating the tenancy. If you look at our termination agreement templates, you will quickly identify the following types of letters to terminate the lease.
Types of Lease Termination
It is a custom to distinguish three types of end tenancy letters according to the cause: pay rent or quit, cure or quit, and finally, an unconditional quit. If the termination is without cause, the landlord has to give the tenant either a 30-day termination notice or a 60-day termination notice.
What to Say in a Lease Termination Letter?
Apart from the usual information required for any document, such as the names, addresses and the like, the notice to end tenancy has to show the original lease (rental agreement) with the names and start and end dates of the contract. You also need to specify the reason for your release of the lease agreement (what caused you to end the rental agreement). Indicate the vacate date, meaning the day when the tenant is supposed to move out. Finally, it is a good idea to include the forwarding address, where the correspondence will be sent to after the tenant leaves the property.
The general rule of thumb is to understand why this letter is being written. Let us take two scenarios: the landlord gives notice and the tenant gives notice. In the first scenario, you prepare yourself to show to the court that you gave the tenant a fair warning. As a tenant, you need a very good reason to end your tenancy early. Basically, you have to show that the place is unfit to live in by providing proof that the implied warranty of habitability has been violated by the landlord.
If you do not use a notice of termination, you may find it difficult to make a point in court. The judge does not look favorably at the tenant who simply moves out without notice and at the landlord who kicks out their tenants without a warning. The social norms presuppose the initial one-year rental agreement is honored. Therefore, the best scenario is when the two parties agree and end their contract on the terms of a mutual understanding. Sometimes it means the landlord has to do some costly repairs and at other times, the tenant will have to pay a lease termination fee.