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Today, we are talking about evictions in the Santa Cruz area and clearing up some of the confusion that people often have when it comes to terminology. Someone recently asked if it was possible to do an eviction without going to court. The answer to that question is no. An eviction always requires legal action.

Notice to Vacate

The confusion is usually due in part to the action we can take in order to require a tenant to vacate a property. Landlords and professional property managers in Santa Cruz can give a tenant a 30 day notice or a 60 day notice, or even in some cases a 90 day notice to vacate the property. When this happens, tenants might call in a panic and want to know why they are being evicted. However, they aren’t being evicted. They are simply receiving notice that the rental agreement will be coming to an end and it won’t be renewed. This is the same as when tenants give a landlord a 30 day notice that they will be moving out. This is not an eviction, it’s simply a notice that the tenant will need to find a new place to live and as long as the tenant moves out, there is no court action required.


An eviction is different. This is the action you take when a tenant has not paid rent and it’s past the due date or a tenant is breaking the terms of a rental agreement. An eviction can also occur when a tenant does not move out after the 30 day notice to vacate. It’s a legal proceeding that’s initiated in order to get a property back to the owner.

As you can see, these are two different things. One is a notice period and one is a legal action. When we do have to evict a tenant, which is very rare, we contact our landlord and tenant attorneys as soon as possible and they take it from there. The process needs to be followed perfectly and there’s no need for us to mess it up.

When you give notice to tenants, offer them a good reference. They are going to be stressed out about finding a new place to live and when they’re looking for a new home, their landlord is going to ask why they’re moving. They don’t want to feel like they are being evicted.

Can You Do a Santa Cruz Eviction Without Going to Court? by Portola Property ManagementPlease contact us at Portola Property Management if you need any help with evictions or notices to vacate.