A notice to quit is a formal document that advises a tenant of the landlord’s intent to reclaim possession of the property where the tenant currently resides. In many communities, a document of this type is a forerunner to the formal process of eviction. In the event that the tenant chooses to comply, the landlord does not have to proceed with the eviction process, a legal process that can be somewhat expensive.
There are several reasons why a landlord would serve a tenant with a notice to quit. The most common reason is the repeated failure of the tenant to pay the agreed-upon monthly rental in a timely manner. A notice to quit may also be issued in the event that the actions of the tenant threaten the well-being of other tenants residing in or near the rental property. For example, if a tenant in an apartment building insists on playing loud music late at night, the landlord may determine that he or she is causing undue inconvenience for the other tenants in the building, and ask the tenant to seek living accommodations elsewhere. Should the lease specifically forbid having a pet in the rental unit, and the landlord finds the tenant does have a pet, there is a good chance that the landlord will issue a notice to quit, and ask the tenant to vacate the premises within a reasonable amount of time.
It is important to note that laws governing the eviction process vary from one jurisdiction to another. In some communities, the process can take several months and cost the landlord a great deal of money. In other areas, eviction is a relatively simple process that requires the landlord to pay modest fees in order for law enforcement to handle the eviction. Just about all situations do require that a landlord present a written notice to quit or vacate before attempting to involve law enforcement.
The contents of a notice to quit will vary slightly, depending on laws and regulations that are currently in force in the municipality. Generally, the notice carries a specific date, and will provide the reason that the landlord is asking the tenant to vacate the premises. In addition, the document will also provide a specific date by which the tenant is to have removed his or her possessions from the property, and returned the keys to the landlord. It is not unusual for the notice to quit to also note that is the terms outlined in the document are not followed, the landlord will proceed with formal eviction proceedings.