Roommates can be good company and even friends, but on the other hand, they often don’t work out. Some loud music or a few spontaneous parties can cause the roommate relationship to deteriorate very quickly. Many people find themselves in the position of needing to evict a roommate. If this happens, part of the process will be writing an effective eviction letter.
Ask them to leave
The first step in getting rid of an unacceptable roommate is just to ask him to leave. It’s possible he’s as unhappy with you as you are with him, and he’ll take the opportunity to move out. This saves everyone trouble, so it’s a good place to start. It’s best to ask politely in a way that suggests the breakup would be advantageous to him as well as you.
roommate named on the lease?
If that doesn’t work, things become more complicated. Is the roommate named on the lease? If that’s the case, it will be very difficult to evict him because he has as much right to be there are you do. If the roommate’s behavior is very egregious, you might ask for help from the landlord in getting him out.
The landlord may be willing to file a criminal trespass charge against him. But there’s always the possibility the landlord will connect you with the misbehavior and evict both of you. If the roommate is on the lease and you aren’t, you’re probably the one who will end up moving.
If the roommate is not on the lease and you are, you can write him an eviction letter that will serve as a notice of eviction. Your letter will give the roommate 30 days in which to vacate the property. Be sure to keep a copy of it. If the roommate doesn’t leave after the 30 days, you’ll be able to take him to court, and you’ll need to present the letter as evidence.
A letter of eviction should contain these four elements:
1. It should spell out the terms of the eviction. The letter should be dated and state that the roommate has to be out within 30 days. You can also give a specific date by which the roommate has to leave. Make it clear that you’ll bring legal action if he doesn’t vacate the premises within the specified time.
2. It should explain the reasons for the eviction, the steps you’ve taken to remedy the situation and the fact that the steps have failed.
3. It should list any property the roommate has left behind and state that you’re not responsible for that property.
4. Be sure to hand-sign the letter. This makes the proceeding stand up in court.
Since roommate eviction notices are a little different from tenant eviction notices because the relationship is different, here is a sample letter:
Sample eviction letter for roommate
25 Main Street, Apt. 3
August 6, 2016
Because of your behavior, our living arrangement is not working out. So I’m hereby serving you notice of eviction. You have to be out of my apartment within 30 days, otherwise I’ll take legal action.
You have not paid rent for three months and have also invited people over without asking me, contrary to our original agreement. I’ve asked you to stop doing this but to no avail. You’ve also broken my mirror and damaged my sofa. Photos are enclosed.
I will not be responsible for any property that you leave behind here.
As you’re not on the lease, you have no legal right to be here, and I’m within my rights to notify law enforcement if you don’t go. So please find somewhere else to live within the specified 30 days.