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Landlord’s “Increasing the Rent” Notice – with Sample

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The rent increase notice is a letter provided by the landlord that informs the tenant that the rent will be raised. The letter may only be used for month to month rental agreements unless a standard (fixed) lease is expiring then this letter may be given upon its expiration. After issuing the notice, the tenant has the right to reject the increase and choose to vacate the premises.

Certified Mail (Return Receipt) – This letter constitutes legal notice. Therefore, it is highly recommended to be sent via certified mail for the purpose of collecting a receipt after it has been received by the tenant. Make sure to keep as it will act as evidence that the form was delivered.

Table of Contents

How Much Can the Landlord Raise the Rent?

Unless the property is located in a municipality that controls the rent there is no maximum to how much the rent can be increased.

How to Legally Increase the Rent

Before deciding on raising the rent it’s important to factor that if the tenant has paid on-time and been a good neighbor to others, that the landlord may lose him or her to another property. Therefore, it is important to be knowledgable of the rents in the area to ensure that the increase will not seem too egregious in comparison to the market area.

Step 1 – Decide the New Rent

When deciding the new rent for the tenant it is best to see what the comparables are in the area. This can be sought online through the following websites:

  • Rentometer.com – Simply enter the address and the number (#) of bedrooms and be shown the average monthly rent along with real-time asking rents in the area.
  • Zillow.com – Enter your address and be shown current properties for rent on a map.
  • Craigslist – Select your area > Apts / housing > and enter your mailing address to be shown pictures and maps of the properties with current monthly rent amounts.

After making a thorough search of your area you can make a justified guess on what the property is worth.

Recommended Tip – When viewing other listings in the area, most landlords believe their property is worth more or better than others even if they are not! Therefore, try to make a well-informed determination of the rental market based on the facts!

Step 2 – Check Your Agreement

Under most circumstances, if the lease is not month-to-month arrangement then the landlord is not able to increase the rent. For most standard leases, which last for a period of 1-year, the terms state a fixed rent until its expiration.

Even with a month-to-month lease, it is the requirement of the landlord to read its terms to ensure that raising the rent is allowed.

Step 3 – Check Your State Notice Period

Make sure that there aren’t any municipal laws that prohibit a landlord from raising the rent by a certain amount. Otherwise, the only duty of the landlord is to give the tenant the State required notice period before the rent may become into effect.

Step 4 – Write and Send the Form

 

After the rent has been figured it is time to write the letter and send via certified mail with return receipt. This will ensure that the tenant will receive the official notice and when the postal service returns the receipt it is very important to keep for your records.

Afterwards, the tenant will make an informed decision of whether to agree and pay the new rent amount, make a counter-offer, or choose to move-out.

Recommended Tip – Feel free to send comparables of similar properties in the area to show the tenant that the rent is justified. Especially if the rent hasn’t been changed in a long time or if it’s located in a growing area, this will help the tenant come to terms with the situation.

Sample Letter

Notice to Raise Rent

 

ABC Property Management
100 5th Ave
New York, NY 10022

February 1, 2018

Dear Tenant,

This letter, sent on February 1, 2018, marks official notice of our intention to raise the monthly rent from its current rate of $500 per month to $550 beginning on April 1, 2018. If you do not accept the increase in rent under the terms of this notice your current lease will be terminated on April 1, 2018.

Please inform us of your decision by replying to this letter by registered mail or by e-mail at john@abcproperty.com

Sincerely,

John Appleseed

Property Manager

How to Write

Download the increase letter in Adobe PDF, Microsoft Word (.docx) or Open Document Text (.odt)

Step 1 – Enter the name of the person (tenant) who will be receiving the notice (upper-left corner).

Step 2 – In the first (1st) paragraph write the following information;

  • Date of letter;
  • Name of landlord (individual or entity);
  • Current rental rate;
  • Full street address.

Step 3 – In the second (2nd) paragraph fill-in the date of when the increase will occur. The landlord should take note of their respective State laws on this matter and abide by the mandated time period (if any). The landlord should also include a date for when the tenant has the right to make the decision of whether to opt out of the lease arrangement if they choose to decline the increase and how they should send the cancellation.

Step 4 – The landlord should sign and print their name respectively and send to the tenant in one of the following manners in the Certificate of Service:

  • Personally given to the tenant;
  • Deliver to the premises with someone of suitable age on the property;
  • Send to the tenant via certified mail (return receipt).

The signature that is given by the tenant, or representative, should be kept for document purposes.


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