Iowa Eviction Process & Laws | Free IA Eviction Notices

The Iowa eviction process is starts when the landlord has either sent a notice to the tenant for a violation of their lease (nonpayment, noncompliance, or danger of abuse) or cancelling a month to month tenancy. If the tenant does not respond to the landlord's request and overstays the notice period the landlord has the right to enter into a forcible entry and detainer and follow the Eviction Instructions until the property has been repossessed.

NonPayment Laws - 3 days § 562A.27

NonCompliance Laws - 7 days § 562A.27

Month to Month Laws - 30 days § 562A.34

Forcible Entry and Detainer Laws - Chapter 648

Types of Notice

Iowa 3 Day Notice to Quit | Danger of Abuse

The Iowa three (3) day notice to quit, in reference to Statute 562A.27A, is used after a tenant has been served with a seven (7) day notice to cure, or a thirty (30) day termination notice. Iowa State law requires that tenants receive an additional notice period after the initial…

Iowa 3 Day Notice to Quit | NonPayment of Rent

The Iowa three (3) day notice to quit, in accordance with Code 562A.27, is reserved for use when a tenant has failed to pay the rent. The notice informs the tenant that they have three (3) days to pay the rent or move out of the rental unit. If the…

Iowa 30 Day Notice to Quit | Month to Month Tenancy

The Iowa thirty (30) day notice to vacate, referred to in Statute 562A.34, is used to notify month-to-month tenants of the landlord’s intention to terminate the lease agreement. The notice is not the same as a notice to quit, it is only used to notify the tenant of the upcoming lease…

Iowa 7 Day Notice to Cure or Quit | NonCompliance

The Iowa seven (7) day notice to quit, referenced in Code 562A.27, is to be used for tenants who have committed “curable” lease violations. The notice states that the tenant must fix (aka “cure”) their violation(s) within the seven (7) day time frame. If the tenant does not cure the…

Process How to Evict a Tenant

Step 1 – Evicting a tenant in Iowa begins with notifying the tenant of your intention to terminate the lease/rental agreement. There are four general different types of notices: three (3) day notice for non-payment of rent, seven (7) day notice to quit or cure for non-compliance, thirty (30) day notice to quit for month-to-month tenancies, and a three (3) day notice to quit*. Under Illinois law, if a tenant violates the lease agreement and fails to fix (aka “cure”) the violation within the seven (7) day notice period, the landlord must then serve them with a three (3) day notice to quit/vacate before an eviction lawsuit (i.e. “forcible entry and detainer”) can be filed.

*The three day notice to quit can only be used if a tenant has committed “clear and present danger” to other tenants or the rental property. Examples include physically assaulting someone on the premises of the rental property, possessing illegal drugs, or handling/possessing illegal firearms. 

Note: It’s important to serve the tenant with the proper notice, because if you file an eviction action, and the incorrect notice was served, the court will dismiss the case (and the eviction process would need to start all over again).
Three (3) Day Notice to Quit (Non-Payment of Rent)

Three (3) Day Notice to Quit

Seven (7) Day Notice to Cure/Quit

Thirty (30) Day Termination Notice
Step 2 – The notice should be served to the tenant personally, however if that is not an option then the notice can be sent via certified mail or posted in a conspicuous location on the premises of the rental unit. It is recommended to serve the notice personally because otherwise the tenant could technically argue in court that they did not receive proper notice*. If the tenant fails to pay the rent within the three (3) day notice period, then you can file an eviction lawsuit.

Note: If the tenant does not cure their violation within the seven (7) day notice period, you must serve them with a three day notice to quit/vacate before you can officially terminate the tenancy and file an eviction action. The three day notice to quit must also be served after a month-to-month tenant has been issued a 30 day notice of termination. You can file an eviction action in court if the tenant fails to vacate the rental unit within three days after being served the notice.

*This typically only happens when the tenant has hired a lawyer to represent them.

Step 3 – After the eviction action has been filed, the tenant must be given notice of the eviction hearing. The notice should be served personally, however sending it through certified mail and then posting a copy somewhere on the rental unit (such as the front door) is a secondary (and less optimal) option. It’s important to note that the notice must be served at least three (3) business days before the hearing date.

Step 4 – It’s important to remember to bring all relevant documentation/evidence/witnesses to the hearing. If the tenant does not show up for the hearing, the case will most likely be ruled in favor of the landlord. The tenant will need to vacate the rental property within a certain amount of time (typically anywhere from three to seven days). If the tenant does appear at the hearing, the court will allow both parties to present their side of the story. If the tenant ends up winning the case, the eviction lawsuit will be dismissed and they will have the legal right to remain in the rental unit.

Step 5 – The Sheriff will oversee the actual eviction, and usually will call the tenant beforehand to let them know when they are coming (however they are not required to do so).