When a lease terminates in Florida, it automatically goes into a month-to-month agreement. This means the tenant can remain in the property without renewing the lease, and either the landlord or the tenant only has to give 15 days of notice before the tenant vacates the property.
How Good Is A Month-to-Month Lease For A Landlord?
The lease is your governing document, and it should always work in the landlord’s favor. As property managers, we try to get tenants into an annual lease instead of having the lease transfer to a month-to-month rental. We don’t want to give them control of the 15 days requirement. Depending on the time of year that your tenant moves, you could be looking at extra vacancy and turnover costs.
Timing is everything with Leasing
For example, if the tenant is not going to commit to re-renting the property for a year and the lease on the property is going to expire around May or June, you should terminate that lease and immediately begin advertising the property. Summer months are peak months for renting properties, and you’ll have an easier time finding a new tenant.
You don’t want to find yourself in a situation where a tenant may move out with only 15 days of notice in October or November. These months are considerably slower, and it may take you longer to rent the property. Landlords could find themselves with vacant homes for months on end waiting for the market to pick back up.
Optimal Times for Month-to-Month Leases
On the other hand, if your tenant’s lease is ending in November or December, you may want to encourage the tenant to do a month-to-month agreement. This short-term lease will help you get past the "dark area" of trying to find tenants during the holidays. You would have someone in your property during the rental market’s downtime. Then, you can wait until after the holiday period to give your tenant a notice that you are going to re-rent the property on a one-year lease. You can do this when the market will see more people looking for rental homes.
Whether a month-to-month lease is a good idea really is a matter of when the lease will be up. Each situation will vary, and you’ll have to think about the time of year, the strength of the rental market, and whether you have a good tenant in place with whom you are willing to be flexible.
Know the Landlord Tenant Laws
Using the laws to your advantage is really a good idea. You have to know what the tenants’ rights are and what the landlords’ rights are. This becomes very important when you’re looking at investments and considering professional property management.
We can help you manage the ending of leases and the potential month-to-month rental situations. If you have any questions about this topic or property management in general, please contact us at Gulf Coast Property Management.