Most residential leases last twelve months. Commercial leases on the other hand usually last much longer. For example, our law firm lease is an eight year lease. Commercially leases are usually for a longer period of time because finding commercial tenants takes longer than finding residential tenants (usually) and landlords will often renovate a property to suit the needs of their commercial tenant.
Expiration of the lease allows the landlord to make plans for major renovations or repairs and increase rent due to market fluctuations. It also allows the tenant to find a more suitable residence. At the same time, a lease that is too short may result in a landlord not being able to turn a profit. As you know by now, turnover in the leasing business is not cheap.
It is not uncommon for a landlord to be looking forward to the expiration of the lease. Although it means the property may be vacant for a month or two, it also means that the landlord will be able to find a more suitable tenant (maybe on that pays on time or doesn’t bother all of the other tenants).
It can be very frustrating when a tenant refuses to vacate at the expiration of the lease. This is called a holdover tenant. In Utah, a lease is automatically renewed for a month 15 days before the prior lease period expires.
For example, if your lease expires on December 31, you have until December 16 to post a Utah Notice that the Lease will not be renewed. Otherwise, your tenant may elect not to leave. A holdover tenant is still subject to the same provisions agreed to in the lease. That means that he or she must pay rent for the following period.
After the lease expires, the landlord and tenant operate on a month to month lease. To terminate a month to month lease, You must give the tenant notice at least 15 days before the expiration of the term. For example, if it is March 1, and you do not want the tenant to be able to stay through April, you need to Post a Notice to Vacate by March 16. The notice to vacate must give the tenant until March 31 to vacate.
If you have any quesions and would like to speak with a Utah Landlord Attorney, give us a call. We have Utah Eviction Attorneys who can help you in a wide variet of legal matters.