Legal Q&A: How much notice is required to enter unit?


Question: How many protected classes are there in California?

Answer: In addition to the seven federal protected classes (race, color, religion, national origin, sex, familial status and disability) California has thirteen protected classes, some of which are unique to California.  They are: marital status, age, ancestry, sexual orientation, source of income, medical condition, gender, gender identity, gender expression, genetic information, citizenship, immigration status and primary language spoken. California also prohibits discrimination based on the perception that someone is from a protected class or is associated with someone from a protected class. Finally, it prohibits discrimination on any arbitrary basis.

Question: I have a renter who gave me a 30-day notice and then left the following week. Can I re-key the door locks and enter the property?

Answer:  If your resident has clearly vacated the unit and communicated the same to you, you do not have to wait until the thirty-day notice expires before you can relet the unit.  California law requires that you mitigate your potential loss of rent by attempting to rent the property as soon as possible.  The former tenant is liable for any unpaid rent up to the time the premises are relet or the thirty-day notice expires.

Ted Kimball Kimball, Tirey & St. John LLP

Ted Kimball
Kimball, Tirey & St. John LLP

Question: If we personally serve a tenant a notice to enter the unit and we mail them a copy of the notice, how long do I have to wait before entry?

Answer: California law requires six days if the notice is mailed only. If served personally or posted on the usual entry door of the premises, a twenty-four hour notice of entry is presumed to be a reasonable time.

Kimball, Tirey & St. John LLP is a full service real estate law firm representing residential and commercial property owners and managers. This article is for general information purposes only. Laws may have changed since this article was published. Before acting, be sure to receive legal advice from our office. If you have questions, please contact your local KTS office. For contact information, please visit our website: For past Legal Alerts, Questions & Answers, and Legal Articles, please consult the resource library section of our website.

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