Constructive Eviction in 2023: Tenant Rights and Printable Templates for Your Protection

Pooja Batra
Last Updated:

18 Sep 2023

Published On:

15 Sep 2023

min read

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Are you a tenant living in a property that is uninhabitable, and your landlord refuses to fix it? As a tenant, you have the option of sending your landlord an eviction notice and terminating the tenancy without rent obligations


Keep reading to discover the steps needed to terminate your tenancy using the concept of constructive eviction.


Constructive eviction allows a Tenant to vacate the property and terminate the tenancy agreement without further rent obligation if the landlord fails to carry out essential repairs, rendering the property  uninhabitable.


On this  Page:

  • What is Constructive Eviction?
  • How does a constructive eviction occur?
  • Step by Step Guide for Tenants with Printable Templates
  • Difference between wrongful eviction and constructive eviction
  • What are the consequences of constructive eviction?


This blog provides all the answers to your questions, such as understanding your rights and sending a constructive eviction letter to the landlord to protect your claim.

What is Constructive Eviction?


So, what is constructive eviction in real estate? 

As a legal term, 'Constructive Eviction' refers to a situation where the tenant's right to quietly enjoy the rented property is severely impeded because the rented property is rendered uninhabitable due to the landlord's failure to perform its legal obligations.


Let me break it down for you: 


Constructive eviction occurs when the landlord neglects to carry out its duties and responsibilities such as maintaining the rental unit and that renders the rental unit unlivable for the tenant. In such circumstances the tenant has the right to move out of the rented property and terminate the rental agreement without obligation to pay future rent.


Read more about constructive eviction, click here


How does a constructive eviction occur?


Examples of Constructive eviction are: 

(a) Plumbing Problems: Frequent leaks, drainage issues, and water pressure fluctuations have disrupted daily activities.

(b) Heating/Cooling Issues: The inconsistent functioning of the heating and cooling systems has made it difficult to maintain a comfortable temperature within the property.

(c) Electrical Problems: Frequent electrical outages and malfunctioning fixtures have created safety hazards.

(d) Mold Growth: Mold has developed in various areas of the property, leading to potential health concerns.

(e) Pest Infestations: Persistent pest infestations, such as [specify type of pests], have made the premises unsanitary and uncomfortable.


In such circumstances where the landlord neglects to maintain the rented premises, rendering it uninhabitable for the tenant then constructive eviction can be used as defence in the court for early termination of lease by the tenant.


Constructive Eviction Checklist - Does your circumstance qualify as constructive eviction? Find out 


Are you unsure whether you’re experiencing a case eligible for constructive eviction? Use this checklist to ascertain if your circumstances align with constructive eviction.

  • Landlord is interfering with your right to enjoy the rented premises
  • Conditions within the rented premises have become unbearable for living.
  • Landlord neglects to fulfil its obligations such as to maintain the premises as stated in your rental agreement.


If your response to all the above is ‘Yes’ then follow the step by step guide below to take further action


Read more about the necessary criterias to constitute constructive conviction, click here


Step by Step Guide for Tenants with Printable Templates


Step 1:  Document the Issues


Record Incidents: You must document details of all incidents that contribute to constructive eviction. 

Collect Evidence: Gather any relevant evidence such as photos, videos to support your case.


Step 2:  Notify Your Landlord of the Issues


Download the DocPro’s Repair and Maintenance Request Letter to Landlord Letter Template to inform your landlord of the issues you are facing in the rented property and intent to claim constructive eviction.


Repair and Maintenance Request  Letter Template - Download Now! Printable Template 


Step 3: Vacate the Rented property


You can move out of the rented property if the landlord fails to fix the issues and the property is uninhabitable. It is advisable, that you as the tenant have provided a reasonable period of time to the landlord to fix these issues.


Step 4: Formal Notice of Constructive Eviction to Landlord


Download DocPro’s Constructive Eviction Notice Template to notify your landlord that you have vacated the property and hereby terminating the Agreement due to circumstances that rendered the property uninhabitable, and you have no further obligation to pay rent.



Notice of Constructive Eviction to Landlord - Download Now and Safeguard Your Rights!


Difference between Wrongful Eviction and Constructive Eviction

Wrongful Eviction

Constructive Eviction

When landlord illegally removes the tenant from the rented property i.e. without following the legal procedure for eviction of tenant

When landlord’s actions or negligence renders the property inhabitable and forces the tenant to leave the property 

Physical eviction by landlord 

No physical eviction by landlord

Examples : Landlord changes the locks, removes the tenant's belongings or shuts off the utilities

Examples: persistent maintenance problems (e.g., plumbing or electrical issues), unsafe conditions, pest infestations

What are the consequences of Constructive Eviction?


Constructive eviction allows the tenant to:

  • Terminate the Rental Agreement early
  • Seek damages from the Landlord


It’s advisable to consult a lawyer as the constructive eviction laws varies by jurisdiction.


For instance in Florida, tenants may claim constructive eviction based on precedents. It is advisable to tenants that they provide a reasonable period of time to the landlord to fix the issues in the rented property, and if the property is rendered uninhabitable then vacate the premises within a reasonable time. 


In California, tenants can break a lease without obligation to pay rent if the property is not in a livable condition. Again, it is advisable to notify the landlord about issues and provide a reasonable period of time to fix those issues.


Is Constructive Eviction the only remedy available to the tenant?


Constructive eviction laws differ from state to state, so it is important to consult an attorney before taking action. Tenants can deduct repair costs from their rent in some jurisdictions if they carry out the repairs themselves.


Is it a significant risk for a tenant to claim Constructive eviction?


Yes. tenants take a substantial risk when utilizing the constructive eviction defense in court. This is because to meet the criteria for constructive eviction, the tenant must prove to the court that the property was uninhabitable due to the landlord's failure to address the issues. If the court does not accept the claim, the tenant could be held responsible for paying the full rent for the entire lease term.


Download and Use the printable letter templates for tenants linked in this blog to ensure you have the necessary evidence to support your claim for constructive eviction. These are the only templates you will need to protect yourself. 

Pooja Batra

Pooja has more than 8 years of in-house legal experience in large MNC’s. She has advised on a wide range of corporate and commercial matters including drafting, reviewing and negotiating a variety of commercial contracts and other agreements across various business lines. If you would like to become a contributor to DocPro, please click the link below:



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Uninhabitable Conditions


Landlord Negligence


Legal Recourse


Tenant Protection


Rental Property




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Tenant Responsibilities


Lease Termination


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