“Moving is my favorite thing to do in the world!” said no one ever. I think I’ve moved around forty times in my young life, and each time is the same as the one before. I have three weeks to get outta this place and I don’t even know where to begin packing. While I consider myself a pro at moving, I still hate it. I do, however, love unpacking in my new pad. Where will I hang this picture? Where should I put my velvet chartreuse couch? How will I arrange my bedroom? That part is fun. But before I can do all of amazing stuff, I need to let my landlord know that I am moving.
When you signed the lease before you moved into your place, your landlord should have carefully gone over each section of the lease with you and provided you with a copy for your records. In the lease, there is a Notice Period Requirement (unless your landlord is using an outdated and archaic lease). Typically, this notice period means you are required to provide notice of your intent to vacate the premises. It could be 30 days, or more commonly, 60 days, but there are some landlords (like mine) that require 59 days. Really? 59? So. Random.
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It’s incredibly important to know exactly how many days you are required to give notice, because if you miss it by one *tiny* day you will be responsible for either 1) another full month’s rent or 2) paying a fee for having an improper notice. You also should know that almost all lease end dates are the last day of the month, so if you turn your notice in mid-month you are still responsible for the full rental amount through the end of the month that you are wanting to move. For instance, if you want to move on 5/31 and your landlord needs 60 days, your notice needs to be in their hands no later than 3/31. So pull out your lease and a magnifying glass – it’s time to find out that notice period and turn in your intent to vacate!
You will want to include specific information in your intent to vacate: Today’s date, your current address and apartment number, the date you will be vacating, and your forwarding address (if you already know it). If you don’t know your new address yet, that’s okay – you just need to make sure you leave it with your landlord when you turn your keys in, at the very latest. Some landlords require you to have a written notice with your signature (most common), some will want you to fill out their own notice form, and some are okay with just a simple email, but it’s up to you to figure out what exactly your landlord expects from you. Want an example notice? Voilà.
Please accept this as my ___ day notice to vacate [your address and apartment number]
by [last day of the month ___ days from today].
The security deposit + interest can be mailed to my forwarding address:
[Street, apartment number (if applicable), city, state, and zip code]