Rent Raise Form
There are two schools of thought here, and two ways to raise rent.
The Polite Version, Without Recourse
The first school of thought is to treat your tenants the way you'd like to be treated. This involves politeness and mutual agreement. That's what you'll find in "the polite version." If they agree and sign, you're done. If they don't sign, you still have a tenant, but the rent hasn't been raised. You will have no legal basis to claim the higher rent.
The Serious Version, With Recourse
The second school of thought is "pay higher rent or get out." This approach minimizes the negotiation time, and provides a notice that can be used to start eviction if the tenant refuses to pay more rent. Raising the rent in a tenancy at will (or lease, if the lease is expiring and converting to a month-to-month) requires 30 days' notice or one full rental period, whichever is longer. If they refuse to pay higher rent, you can start eviction proceedings. Serious landlords may wish to use this approach when making large rent increases (e.g., bringing rents up 10% or more following the purchase of badly managed property) or when rental prices in a region are rapidly rising.
You could try both approaches. Try the polite way six to eight weeks before the intended rent raise, then use the "pay or get out" approach just before the "30 day/one rental period" deadline.
Note that if you anticipate a problem, this notice should be served by a constable.
- How to Raise the Rent in Massachusetts: How a Landlord Should Decide Whether and How Much (Article - September, 2019)
Polite Version Revisions
- Original version.
Serious Version Revisions
- Updated with the most recent 30 day notice-to-quit, with the offer to start a new tenancy.
- Original version.
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