How to Write a Letter of Intent to Vacate an Apartment

Inform management of your intent to vacate your apartment as soon as possible to avoid penalties.
Inform management of your intent to vacate your apartment as soon as possible to avoid penalties. (Image: Jupiterimages/Creatas/Getty Images)

Once a lease expires, the individual renting an apartment should notify the apartment manager of his intent to vacate the property. A letter of intent isn’t always required unless the renter is breaking his lease early, in which case he may be subject to penalty fees. Write a letter of intent to vacant just like any other professional or business letter and deliver it in a timely fashion. Sending the letter by certified mail can ensure the management company receives it, and help protect the renter against false claims to the contrary.

Read every section in the lease on the property management’s policy on not renewing a lease or ending a lease early. Even if the lease specifies that it is acceptable to verbally inform the management of your intent to vacate, it’s still a good idea to offer written notice as well.

Open a business letter template in Microsoft Word or another word processing program. Replace the top address with your own, add the date, and type the address of the property management office.

Begin the letter by addressing your property manager by name. Call the apartment office and ask for the manager’s name if you don’t know it.

Start the body of your letter by informing management of your intent to vacate the apartment and the date you plan to vacate. Reference your apartment number, and note the date you signed your lease. In the next sentence, offer a reason why you are vacating the property. Keep your words professional and to the point. Even if you are unhappy with your apartment or the management, avoid using harsh or angry wording. If you are requesting the return of your security deposit, inform the company of your intent to clean the apartment and that you will document the condition of the apartment with photographs when you leave.

End the letter by typing “Sincerely,” inserting four paragraph spaces and typing your name. Sign and date the letter in your handwriting. Make a copy for your records.

Send the letter through certified mail with delivery confirmation or return receipt. Keep the postal receipts for your records or as evidence in case the management claims it never received your letter of intent to vacate.

Tips & Warnings

  • Send your letter at least 30 days prior to moving out. Follow up with a phone call to make certain the letter was received.

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