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When a tenant abandons a rental property, the landlord must follow specific steps before taking action. They must post a notice stating the belief of abandonment. If the tenant doesn’t respond within the given time and is significantly behind on rent, the landlord can enter the unit and remove belongings. The tenant can prevent this by paying rent or responding within 10 days to confirm their occupancy.


Last updated 06/22/2023

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Landlord's actions after tenant abandons a rental property

If you have abandoned the rental unit, the landlord may enter the unit, remove your belongings and change the locks. BUT the landlord must give notice and give you an opportunity to respond. Specifically, the landlord MUST:

  • post a written notice on your home that states its belief that you have abandoned the rental unit; and
  • mail the written notice via first class and certified mail, return receipt requested, to your last known address.

Tenant's Response

If you do not respond in writing to the landlord’s notice and you are more than 30 days past due with your rent, the landlord may have the right to enter the rental unit and remove your belongings.

The landlord will not be able to claim abandonment if you pay all the rent due or you respond in writing within 10 days of the posting and mailing of the landlord’s notice. In your written response you must inform the landlord that you are still living in your home. You should date your written response and keep a photocopy with your important papers.