Second Letter

Dealing with an issue that has come back

Sometimes when a landlord fixes an issue, it can be a temporary fix. The issue may come back and cause problems again. If the issue was fixed, and has come back within 6 months, you may be able to end your lease early and move out.

What do I have to do before moving out?

In order to take action, make sure you sent your landlord a first letter about the original issue sometime within the last 6 months. If you haven't sent a first letter to your landlord, you can use our free tool to send your first letter.

What should this second letter include?

  • The date you are sending the letter
  • Your name
  • Your address and unit number
  • Landlord’s name
  • Landlord’s address
  • Detailed description of the issue
  • Any evidence like photos, if possible
  • The date you plan to end your lease and move out (this must be at least 14 days after you sent the first letter)
  • Your signature
  • Date of signature

How to Send a Letter

Landlords can require in the lease that renters communicate with them in a specific way. They may ask renters to use a website, online “portal”, email, or text message.

  1. Check the lease. If a lease says renters must communicate in a specific way, you should use that method.
  2. If the landlord does not specify in the lease, you should communicate the way you have in the past.
  3. If you have not communicated with your landlord in the past, you can send your letter
  • In an e-mail
  • With certified mail or USPS first class
  • Hand-deliver the letter to the landlord or property manager’s business office

What's next?

If the only issue is a refrigerator, stove, or oven

Once a landlord receives this second letter, they have 14 days to fix the refrigerator, stove, or oven. If the landlord fixes or replaces the appliance within 14 days, you can NOT end your lease early.

If your landlord does NOT fix the refrigerator, stove, or oven within 14 days, you can move out and end your lease. You must send a third letter to your landlord, letting them know the date you will be moving out. You can create this third letter with our free form.

If any of your issues is NOT a refrigerator, stove, or oven

You can move out on the day you told your landlord you planed to move out in your second letter. This day must be at least 14 days after sending this second letter.

If you're not sure

Use our Next Step Guide to help figure out if your landlord is on track and what your next step is.