How to Nicely Tell a Tenant to Move Out [Template Letter Included]

When it comes to being a landlord, one of the most difficult situations to navigate is telling a tenant that it is time to move out.

It can be a sensitive and emotional topic, and it’s important to handle it with care and professionalism.

In this article, we’ll provide some tips on how to tell a tenant to move out nicely, and provide a template letter that landlords can use as a starting point.

Let’s get into it.

The information contained in this post is for informational purposes only.  It is not legal advice.  You should seek the advice of a qualified legal professional before making any decisions relating to the topics covered by this article.

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First Things First – Are You Even Justified in Asking Your Tenant to Leave?

I presume there is a valid reason for you to want your tenant to leave the premises. In most cases, it is due to some breach of the lease agreement (likely late/unpaid rent or other significant violation) or some other prohibited behavior by the tenant, such as criminal activity or similar misconduct.

The first thing you should do is check the lease agreement and make sure there is a clear violation of it. If there is, make sure you abide by the terms of your lease and give them notice of the violation and an opportunity to cure, if it’s required or helpful to do so.

If there isn’t a clear violation of the lease, then you should evaluate whether there are other grounds for asking the tenant to leave. As mentioned earlier, that may be due to illegal activity or other wrongdoing by the tenant.

If you are not sure, you may want to engage a qualified lawyer who can walk you through your options.

If you prefer to have a lawyer assist you, I would try JustAnswer. They boast access to thousands of highly-rated, verified real estate lawyers whom you can connect with via their unlimited chat service.

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Assuming you do have a good reason to ask your tenant to leave, but don’t want to start a formal eviction process (at least right now), you can politely request that they do so on their own. Here are some tips to help you do that.

Tip #1: Start the Conversation Early

If you have concerns about a tenant’s behavior or payment history, it’s important to address these issues as soon as possible. Don’t wait until the situation becomes untenable before speaking with your tenant.

By having an open and honest conversation early on, you can hopefully avoid the need for more drastic measures later.

Tip #2: Be Clear and Firm

When it comes to telling a tenant to move out, there’s no need to beat around the bush. Be clear and direct about your concerns, and let them know that it’s time to find a new place to live.

However, it’s important to do so in a firm but respectful manner.

Tip #3: Provide a Reasonable Amount of Time

While you may be eager to have your tenant move out as soon as possible, it’s important to provide them with a reasonable amount of time to find a new place to live.

Depending on the circumstances, this may be anywhere from 30 to 90 days. Be sure to check the laws in your area to determine the appropriate notice period.

Tip #4: Offer Assistance

If you are able to do so, offering assistance to your tenant during this transition period can go a long way towards maintaining a positive relationship. This might include providing references, helping them find a new place to live, or even offering financial assistance.

Tip #5: Follow Up in Writing

After you have had a conversation with your tenant, be sure to follow up in writing. This provides a clear record of what was discussed and agreed upon, and can help avoid any misunderstandings down the road.

In this follow-up letter, be sure to include the date by which the tenant must move out, and any other pertinent details.

Template Letter That Nicely Requests Tenant to Move Out of Rental Property

Here’s a template letter that landlords can use as a starting point:


[Tenant Name] [Address] [City, State ZIP]

Dear [Tenant Name],

I am writing to inform you that I am terminating your tenancy at [Address] effective [Date]. As discussed, the reason for terminating the tenancy is [insert justification per lease, law or regulation].

I would like to take this opportunity to thank you for being a tenant of mine, and for the time you have spent at the property. However, due to [reason for eviction], I am no longer able to continue our landlord-tenant relationship.

I understand that finding a new place to live can be difficult, and I want to offer any assistance that I can during this transition period. Please let me know if there is anything I can do to help, such as providing references or connecting you with local resources.

If you have any questions or concerns, please do not hesitate to contact me. I will also be following up with a written notice of termination, which will include the date by which you must vacate the premises.

Thank you again for your time at the property, and I wish you all the best in your future endeavors.

Sincerely, [Your Name] [Your Address] [City, State ZIP] [Your Phone Number] [Your Email]

Closing Thoughts

In summary, telling a tenant to move out can be a difficult and emotional task, but it’s important to handle it with professionalism and care.

By following these tips and using the template letter provided, you can hopefully make the process as smooth as possible for both you and your tenant.

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