Most landlords and tenants can get along easily, but there might be a time when you require a lease termination letter. Typically, this document is sent along with an eviction notice when the tenant doesn't pay their rent on time. Likewise, you might be making significant repairs or decide to live on the property yourself.
Here is the information you need to determine when to draft a lease termination letter and what to include:
Lease Termination Letter
A lease termination letter must be given to the tenant when the landlord wishes to end the lease early. The goal here is to get the tenant to move out within a specific time frame.
Typically, this is the easiest way to have the renter move out. There are many reasons for this, and the lease termination letter ensures that the landlord is meeting all legal requirements.
For example, the landlord might need such a document when the tenant violates something in the original lease.
Georgia law states that a landlord must give a 60 days notice to the tenant before using the security deposit for repairs or bringing on a new tenant.
State laws state that it's an at-will tenancy when there's no fixed term in the lease. Therefore, the landlord must provide a 60 days notice to vacate, but a tenant has to give a 30-day notice for the same document.
The reason for giving notice is to avoid financial difficulties on the tenant when they are required to move because the property owner requests it.
Sometimes, rental agreements require notice periods to end the relationship. If you want the tenant to stay until the termination date, you don't have to do anything. However, if you wish to end the contract early, the lease termination communicates this information.
Sometimes, annual rental agreements automatically renew, so you should provide a 60-day notice before the termination date to avoid legal issues.
If you don't create a lease termination and deliver it to the tenant, Georgia law comes into play. You may:
- Face legal fees and other financial penalties
- Have to attend court
- Be required to extend the lease automatically
- Not be allowed to keep the security deposit for necessary repairs
Termination of Tenancy
When there is no fixed term, this is considered a month-to-month tenancy. Therefore, the landlord should draft the document and make sure it is sent (with a receipt) at least 60 days before the move-out date.
Termination of Tenancy with Specific Term
If it is not a month-to-month tenancy, the landlord can choose to wait until the agreement ends if there's no automatic renewal clause. However, if they decide to end the lease early, they must still give a 60 days notice and follow the notice requirements in the rental agreement. There could be specific date information included.
What to Include
When you wish to create a termination letter, you must ensure that you've provided the pertinent information so that the document is legal. Most of the data you require comes directly from the original lease, but there will be new information, too. You should ensure it contains:
- Vacate Date Information - The first thing on the document should be the date you wish to terminate the lease. This establishes the appropriate time frame for your tenant. You must give at least a 60 days notice.
- Tenant Information - You must ensure that the termination notice goes to the right parties. Include the name of the tenant, your name, and the street address of the rented property. It's wise to provide your full address, as well, though this isn't required.
- Property Information - The landlord should specify all identifying information about the property. This includes the physical address, but you must also provide block numbers, subdivisions, lot numbers, and the county in which it's located. We often recommend adding a description of the premises, including the buildings and vehicles.
- Lease Information - If the tenant breached the terms of the original lease, the landlord must include that information. This often consists of the period for the lease and its terms. In Georgia, we recommend providing a reason for lease termination here. However, you are not required to do so. Still, it's illegal to terminate a lease for retaliation purposes. When you add that data, the tenant cannot say you closed out the lease illegally.
- Proof of Service - If you're not the one serving the termination letter, you might want to get an Affidavit of Service. The one serving the notice gives the signed letter to the recipient and acts as proof they received it on that date. Georgia doesn't require a third party to deliver the notice, but you must show proof of receipt.
- Signature - The landlord should sign the notice at the bottom to begin the process of vacating their property. It's best to include your printed name underneath or to the side of the document for the best results.
Build Your Own
When drafting a Georgia lease termination notice, it's important to follow the rules and laws in your state and at the federal level. DoorLoop makes it easy with its many options:
If you are terminating your lease and need the tenant to sign, or you want to sign a new lease with a new tenant, you want to make the process as easy and efficient as possible.
With DoorLoop, you can get your agreements eSigned in a few seconds. You can also get to the eSignature step much faster by creating reusable templates that are autofilled with tenants' information.
DoorLoop also makes it so simple to find the best tenants in the first place by syndicating your listings on popular websites Zillow, Trulia, Hotpads, Apartments.com, and more. You can also make sure you're bringing in the best tenants by screening your prospects in seconds through DoorLoop.
For more information about DoorLoop, learn more or schedule a free demo.
There could be many reasons to break a lease early as a landlord. However, there are specific laws in place to ensure that you do so correctly in Georgia. Therefore, it's best to create a lease termination letter using DoorLoop. Print out your completed document and send it to the tenant by certified mail!
Do You Require a Notice to Vacate with a Lease Agreement?
Generally, if you plan to end the lease agreement on the end date, you don't need written notice of the lease termination. However, this might be required if you wish to end the rental agreement before the end date.
Can I Terminate a Rental Agreement with No Early Termination Clause?
Termination is harder if there isn't an early termination clause, though there are ways to do it for these reasons:
- You're being sent into the military.
- You're moving to a retirement/nursing home.
- The property owner wishes to live on the premises or use it for their heirs.
Do I Require a Lease Termination Letter for a Month-to-Month Lease?
You might need a lease termination letter if the lease agreement doesn't contain a fixed duration. There's no end date for the contract, so you must provide the appropriate days' notice.
Can I customize my own form or agreement?
Yes, you always can, however if you want to be 100% sure you are protected, you should consult an attorney in your local area.