Abandoned Property Notice

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The Abandoned Property Notice is used when the Landlord has sufficient proof that the rental unit is abandoned and personal property was left behind.

Document Last Modified: 1/16/2020

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State Specific Clauses

VA State Assist

§ 55-248.38:1. Disposal of property abandoned by tenants.
If any items of personal property are left in the premises, or in any storage area provided by the landlord, after the rental agreement has terminated and delivery of possession has occurred, the landlord may consider such property to be abandoned.

The landlord may dispose of the property so abandoned as the landlord sees fit or appropriate, provided he has:
(i) given a termination notice to the tenant in accordance with this chapter, which includes a statement that any items of personal property left in the premises would be disposed of within the twenty-four hour period after termination,
(ii) given written notice to the tenant in accordance with § 55-248.33, which includes a statement that any items of personal property left in the premises would be disposed of within the twenty-four hour period after expiration of the seven-day notice period, or
(iii) given a separate written notice to the tenant, which includes a statement that any items of personal property left in the premises would be disposed of within twenty-four hours after expiration of a ten-day period from the date such notice was given to the tenant.

Any written notice to the tenant shall be given in accordance with § 55-248.6. The tenant shall have the right to remove his personal property from the premises at reasonable times during the twenty-four hour period after termination or at such other reasonable times until the landlord has disposed of the remaining personal property of the tenant.

During the twenty-four hour period and until the landlord disposes of the remaining personal property of the tenant, the landlord shall not have any liability for the risk of loss for such personal property. If the landlord fails to allow reasonable access to the tenant to remove his personal property as provided in this section, the tenant shall have a right to injunctive or other relief as provided by law.

If the landlord received any funds from any sale of abandoned property as provided in this section, the landlord shall pay such funds to the account of the tenant and apply same to any amounts due the landlord by the tenant, including the reasonable costs incurred by the landlord in selling, storing or safekeeping such property. If any such funds are remaining after application, the remaining funds shall be treated as a security deposit under the provisions of § 55- 248.15:1. The provisions of this section shall not be applicable if the landlord has been granted a writ of possession for the premises in accordance with Title 8.01 and execution of such writ has been completed pursuant to § 8.01-470. Please read though the VRLTA Handbook, page 41 for specific direction.

How To Use The Abandoned Property Notice

When a landlord has sufficient proof that a tenant of their property has abandoned the residence then the landlord may use this notice to give to the tenant. This notice makes the tenant aware of the situation and begins the 30 day period for the tenant to contact the landlord before the landlord is able to regain control of the property through the official abandonment process.

This notice can be used when the landlord has definite proof that the tenant has vacated the property even if they have left some of their personal property behind.

Note: Each state has a different method of handling this situation. Some states have specific ways methods and procedures that should be followed in order to regain possession of the property and dispose of any personal items the tenant may have left behind.

The Information In The Notice

The notice itself lets the tenant know that the landlord has made many attempts to contact them with no success and therefore is deeming the property abandoned. The form also details what was left behind at the property and when the landlord entered the premises to make this assessment.

    This list can include items such as:
  • Car
  • Jewelry
  • Clothes
  • Appliances
  • Bedding

The notice is dated and instructs the tenant to respond to the notice within 30 days of this date or the landlord will begin the abandonment process.

All of these details are included to ensure the tenant is fully aware of the situation and how to cure it should they come back to the property within the 30-day compliance period.


During the 30-day period there are marks of time that allow the landlord to remove possessions from the property and even sell them. Tenants and landlords should keep in mind that this property may be stored and sold for the profit of the landlord if the property and the personal possessions inside have been abandoned.

Advice and Tips

The professional team at EZ Landlord Forms have years of experience and tricks that they offer in articles applying to being a property owner and manager overall and that relate to the rules of specific states. These can be found at: https://www.ezlandlordforms.com/articles/news/

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