When you are done reading about the Iowa Eviction Process below, we recommend you purchase the corresponding Iowa Eviction notice to be delivered to your Tenant.
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Iowa Eviction Laws
The basis of the Iowa Eviction Laws are found in Chapter 648 the Iowa Code under “Forcible Entry and Detainer.” If you are a landlord in Iowa, it is a good idea to familiarize yourself with these eviction laws, as it is only a matter of time until you need to use them.
Reasons to Evict in Iowa
In the State of Iowa, a landlord can evict a tenant for many specific reasons. The most common reason is non-payment of rent. Other reasons to evict have to do with the tenant’s unacceptable behavior. These reasons include: unsanitary conditions, health code violations, improper disposal of wastes, improper use of utilities or facilities, destroying the property, disturbing the neighbors, violating the rental agreement, and creating a danger to people around them.
Notice to Cure or Quit
The first step in the iowa eviction process is serving the tenant with an Iowa Eviction notice, also called a Notice to Cure or Quit. The landlord should use a 3 Day Notice for the following situations: Failure to Pay Rent, Creating a Clear and Present Danger, or for Staying over after the lease has expired. The Landlord should use a 7 Day Notice for other Lease Violations.
Serving the Notice to Cure or Quit
There are 2 ways to serve the Notice to Cure or Quit. The first way is to hand deliver the notice to the tenant, or to a resident that is at least 18 years old, and get that person to sign a copy of the notice confirming receipt.
The second way is less confrontational. To serve the notice the second way, the landlord must post the notice on the tenants door, AND mail the tenant a copy by certified mail AND regular mail. The landlord must save the certified mail receipt from the post office. When done this way, the tenant is deemed to be “served” four days after the letters are postmarked (so the 3 or 7 day notice period begins 4 days after the postmark).
Forcible Entry and Detainer
After the Iowa Notice to Cure or Quit has been served on the tenant, and the tenant has not left the premises or cured the problem by the end of the notice period, the landlord must file a case called a “Forcible Entry and Detainer.” The landlord should go to the Clerk of the Court in the County where the property is located, and ask for a Forcible Entry and Detainer notice to be served on the tenant. It is best to have the Sheriff’s Office serve this notice. The notice will set a court date for the landlord and tenant to appear in front of a judge. If the tenant does not show, the landlord will win automatically. If the tenant does show up, the judge will look at all the evidence and make a decision. It is very important that the landlord bring all evidence to prove their case, including copies of the notices, the lease, photographs, etc.
Writ of Possession
If the judge rules in favor of the landlord, and the tenant still does not vacate the premises, it is time to get a “Writ of Possession.” The landlord must request this from the Court Clerk, who will then send a copy to the Sheriff’s Office. The sheriff will give notice to the tenant, and will set a time to physically remove the tenant. Usually a tenant will leave before this happens. If they do not, on the day of the physical eviction, the sheriff will go to the property to “keep the peace.” The landlord must provide the manpower to remove the tenants belongings.
Next Step: We recommend you purchase the corresponding Iowa Eviction notice to be delivered to your Tenant.
This site strives to have the most current information on state eviction laws and forms, however, legislatures and judges’ rulings are always changing the laws. The information on this site is to be used as a guide, and is not to be used as legal advice, or as a substitute for the advice of an attorney. If you believe any information on this site is incorrect or needs to be updated, please Contact Us immediately.