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What Should Landlords Include in a Rent Increase Notice?

Need to send a rent increase notice to a tenant? Follow these dos and don'ts -- and use this sample letter for help.

[Updated: Apr 16, 2021 ] Jul 30, 2020 by Aly J. Yale

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Do Don't
• Personalize it. Don't use "Dear tenant" or "To whom it may concern." This is their money you're talking about, so cold and sterile probably isn't the best way to go about it. Use the renter's name and address them directly. • Get too detailed. While you should offer a short explanation, it doesn't have to be super detailed. Throwing in personal details about your own financial struggles, your family, or other factors isn't necessary. Keep it professional and concise.
• Watch your tone. You want the letter to be friendly yet professional. Phrases like "Thank you" and "Sincerely" go a long way -- especially when talking about money. If you really want to keep them around, you might even throw in an "I've enjoyed having you as a tenant" or something else slightly complimentary. •Put it off. Writing your notice might be hard, but don't delay it too long. The tenant deserves plenty of heads-up before the increase goes into effect. You also want a good cushion if they opt not to renew.
• Give them time. Avoid following up with the tenant too quickly. They will probably need some time to digest the increase as well as do some careful calculations with their roommate, spouse, or family members before they can make a decision. •Forget to look into local laws. Depending on where you're located and what type of property you own, you might be required to give as much as 90 days' notice to your tenant. Always check up on what rent laws you're subject to in your area.
• Include "yes" and "no" boxes. Let the tenant agree or disagree right on the letter. You can even include a stamped envelope in the package to ensure they respond quickly. • Skip the record-keeping. Be sure to print out a copy of your rent increase notice, and keep it with your records. You should also keep the receipt for your certified mail purchase. You never know when you might need legal proof of the notice later on.

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