New Tenant Laws

New Landlord-Tenant Laws for 2003

A.   60-Day Termination Notice

Effective January 1, 2003 until January 1, 2006, a landlord must provide a month to month periodic tenant with an additional 30 days notice to terminate the tenancy if the tenant has lived in the dwelling for one year or more.  Thus, the notice requirement is now a total of 60 days, instead of 30 days.

This 60-day notice requirement has already been in effect since January 1, 2002 for the cities of Los Angeles, Santa Monica, and West Hollywood.  The Legislature has now extended the rule to apply to tenancies throughout the State of California.

The legislative intent of this law is to accommodate tenants who may need more time in this tight rental market to make new housing arrangements.  Hence, the 60?day notice requirement applies to landlords, whereas a tenant who terminates a periodic tenancy may do so with a 30-day notice.

There are certain situations where the 60-day notice is not required.  First, it does not apply if the landlord enters into a fixed term lease, such as a one-year lease agreement.  Second, a 30-day notice is sufficient for tenants who have lived in the property for less than one year.  Third, landlords selling their properties may give a 30-day notice if all of the following six conditions are met:



1.   The owner has entered into a contract to sell the dwelling or unit to a bona fide purchaser for value;


2.   The buyer is a natural person(s);


3.   The buyer in good faith intends to live in the property for at least one year after termination of the tenancy;


4.   The termination notice is given within 120 days of opening escrow;


5.   The owner has established an escrow with a licensed escrow officer, or a licensed real estate broker; and


6.   The dwelling or unit is alienable separate from the title to another other dwelling unit.



Practice Tip : To terminate a tenancy, you may use C.A.R.’s standard form NTT entitled “Notice of Termination of Tenancy.”


Source:  California Senate Bill 1403 (Kuehl), amending California Civil Code section 1946.1.