A landlord or tenant must provide written notice if they intend to terminate the lease. To do this, a lease termination letter is issued.

If you are a property owner or manager looking for information on how to draw up an early lease termination letter, then you have come to the right place!

Here, we'll provide all the information you need to create a lease termination letter or a notice to vacate.

What Is a Lease Termination Letter?

A lease termination letter is a formal letter that either a tenant or landlord gives to the other party to inform them that the lease is being terminated.

It is usually used for standard one-year contracts and month-to-month leases with no end date.

The type of termination letter that is used will depend on the kind of agreement in place. 30-day termination letters are generally used for one-year leases. In some states, a landlord or renter must provide 60- or 90-day’ notice.

It's important to note that this document differs from an eviction notice. When a landlord wants to evict a renter for violating the conditions of the lease, they will send them an eviction notice.

Tenant-provided lease termination letters are frequently utilized when both parties have complied with the conditions of the contract.

Why Use a Lease Termination Letter?

Providing a lease termination or vacate letter is in the best interest of all parties involved.

If you do not submit a lease termination letter, the court could rule in favor of the tenant, regardless of your predicament.

The law does not favor landlords who evict their tenants without providing any prior notice or tenants who leave without warning their landlords. 

Tenants must discuss their reasons for moving out with their landlords in mature discussions rather than just leaving. If they haven't already done so, they can offer to lease the house to a dependable individual or provide the landlord an opportunity to fix the problem.

What's more, you could lose money if you do not provide proper notice, as tenants can file a lawsuit against you for failing to provide an adequate notice period.

The Types of Lease Termination Letters

There are several types of lease termination letters, so bear that in mind when you choose to terminate your tenancy contract.

The kind of agreement you established and the type of property leased will affect which letter you need to use.

Here are the different types of lease termination letters:


You should use this letter to terminate a month-to-month lease with no set end date. It can also be used for the typical one-year lease.


If your lease has a set termination day specified in your agreement, but you want to end it before the lease end date, you must utilize an early lease termination letter.


It is preferable to create a commercial lease termination letter if a tenancy arrangement is formed with a company to utilize the property for business reasons.

What to Include in This Written Notice

what to include in a lease termination letter

A termination letter must be concise, to the point, and formal. Here's what you'll need to include:

  • The names of both parties.
  • A short description of your intention to terminate the lease.
  • The justification for your lease termination.
  • Accepting that any early termination fees specified in the lease must be paid.
  • Recognizing that when you leave, you'll have to pay the landlord the aforementioned fine requesting the landlord's inspection schedule for the property (for tenants).
  • The lease termination date.
  • Provide your current or new phone number and a forwarding address.
  • Let the landlord know that you still have a right to your security deposit (if you are a landlord, it’s important not to make promises to return the security deposit).
  • The property address.
  • Mention that you will clean the rental unit and return the keys (for tenants).
  • The date.
  • Your full name and surname.

Be sure to make a copy of the letter and keep it as proof that you have provided proper notice concerning your intention to terminate the lease.

How to Write a Lease Termination Letter

Keep in mind that lease termination notices can be sent by either the landlord or the tenant. We'll cover the process for both parties below. Here are the steps to follow:

1. Review the Lease Agreement

Look over the rental agreement before you begin to write your lease termination letter. You should first determine if your lease is fixed or a month-to-month contract so that you can determine the type of lease letter to use.

Landlords typically specify a grace period that renters must abide by before terminating month-to-month contracts.

Consult your state's laws regarding this mandatory notice period if your rental agreement doesn't include it. The majority of states require tenants to give their landlord 30 days' notice before breaking their lease.

Check the Terms for Early Termination

You must carefully read your rental agreement if you want to break a fixed-term lease early. Some landlords will allow you to leave early as long as you give them the required notice. If the lease doesn't include a section about early termination, tenants will need to speak with their landlord.

What Does the Lease Agreement Say About Renewals?

Check to see if your lease will be automatically renewed at the conclusion of a specified period.

You can still be required to give early notice that you want to end the contract once your lease period has ended, even if the agreement includes a predetermined end date.

2. Start Writing

It's time to draft the lease termination letter once you've determined whether you have the right to break your contract.

Your full name, the date, the address of your rental property, and a forwarding address are a few crucial details to mention.

Refer to the list above for information on what to include. It's also important to sign the lease termination letter.

3. Deliver the Lease Letter to the Landlord/Tenant

It's essential to use the delivery method specified in the lease to deliver your letter, as failure to do so may be considered not providing the tenant or landlord proper notice. Most leases require that the letter be provided to the other party by certified mail or in person.

If your lease agreement doesn't specify a delivery method, sending an electronic and physical copy of the lease letter or notice to vacate is best. Be sure to keep a copy of the letter yourself as proof.

Tips for Writing a Lease Termination Letter

tips for  writing a lease termination letter

To help you craft the perfect lease termination letter, here are a few tips to keep in mind:

  • Review the lease before drafting this legal document.
  • Check the local laws concerning lease terminations to ensure that you are compliant.
  • Make sure your letter is concise and polite. You might want to proofread to ensure that nothing is ambiguous.
  • Keep it clear and concise.
  • Ensure that you retain a copy of the letter for your own records.
  • Send your letter as early as possible.
  • Make sure you're using the right delivery method.

Looking for an Easier Way to Write a Lease Termination Letter?

The good news is that you won't have to create your lease termination letter from scratch. Simply use DoorLoop to create custom lease letters, or take advantage of our free lease termination letter template.

You can access our free forms here.

Final Thoughts

Running a rental business can be tough! There's maintaining the rental property honoring the terms of the lease, and so much more.

The good news is that you can turn to DoorLoop to streamline your business processes and ensure you have the right tools at your fingertips when you need them.

With an innovative range of features, such as rent collection, document creation, accounting, and more, you can count on DoorLoop to take care of your everyday business processes.

Get in touch with us to book your free demo, or download our sample letter!

Frequently Asked Questions

1. Where can I find a sample lease termination letter?

Download our free forms. Here, you'll find a free lease termination letter template, as well as a lease agreement template and other helpful documents that you can use in your rental business. If you have multiple rental units, we recommend using DoorLoop.

With an autofill feature and innovative tools, such as accounting, property listing, rent collection, and more, you'll have everything you need to succeed.

2. Can either party terminate the lease?

Yes, in most cases, the landlord or tenant can terminate a lease. Check your local laws.

3. What should not be included in a lease termination letter?

Your letter terminating the lease should be prepared formally and courteously. It shouldn't come off as dismissive or unpleasant.

Avoid expressing any commitments regarding the refund of the security deposit in full or in part. Never commit to returning the tenant's security deposit until it is certain, even if you are confident there are no damages to the rental property.

Don't use ambiguous language, especially when discussing the lease expiration date. Write out the entire date (month, day, and year) to ensure that there are no misunderstandings.

Additionally, you must be very specific about why the lease is being terminated. Of course, never invent or exaggerate the reason for termination.

David is the co-founder & CMO of DoorLoop, a best-selling author, legal CLE speaker, and real estate investor. When he's not hanging with his three children, he's writing articles here!