Close this search box.

How the San Diego Just Cause Eviction Ordinance Affects Your Property

The San Diego Just Cause Eviction Ordinance controls how you are able to terminate the lease of a tenant that has lived in your property for more than 2 years.

In 2004, the City of San Diego adopted the just cause eviction ordinance, also referred to as the tenant’s right to know. This ordinance was enacted to protect tenants that have lived in a property for 2 or more years. It requires landlords and property management companies to have a legitimate reason for terminating a tenant’s lease. There are nine specific reasons that allow you to terminate a lease under these circumstances. Update: For our blog addressing AB 1482 and how it impacts just cause evictions, click here.

Nonpayment of Rent

If the tenant has paid late rent for three consecutive months or for a total of six months in a calendar year, they can be dismissed from the property. Additionally, if they don’t pay rent at all, you can begin the eviction process.

Violations of the Obligation of the Tenancy

If the tenants fail to comply with the lease, you are able to terminate the lease. This can include things like excessive HOA violations, unauthorized pets or tenants, etc.


This is when the tenants are causing serious damage or harm to the property or common areas. It applies to neighboring units as well, i.e. if they are damaging surrounding areas and units or creating excessive noise and refusing to comply when asked.

Illegal Use

If the tenant is using the property for illegal purposes or doing illegal things on the property, this is grounds for lease termination.

Refusal to Renew The Lease

When you offer a lease renewal to a tenant for one year and they want month-to-month, occasionally they might refuse to sign the lease you provide because it’s not what they want. However, this is considered a refusal to renew the lease and can be grounds for termination. Keep in mind, rental rates are not considered like terms. If you offer a new lease with an increased rate and the tenants refuse, you are able to terminate the lease.

Refusal to Provide Access

This occurs when you are trying to enter the home, whether it be for an annual inspection or to show the property for sale, and the tenant refuses access to the home, despite the notice they were given. Landlords are allowed to enter the home for a set list of reasons and if the tenant continually denies access despite getting written notice and they refuse to reschedule, their lease can be terminated.

Correcting Violations & Major Property Construction

If the home is going to be uninhabitable for a long period of time due to major repairs or renovations, you are able to terminate the tenant’s lease.

Withdrawal From the Rental Market

If you plan to withdraw your property from the rental market altogether, you can terminate the tenant’s lease.

Owner or Relative Occupancy

If the owner or their relative plans to move back into the home, the lease can be terminated.

If you choose to terminate the lease for one of these reasons, you must inform the tenant as to why their lease is being terminated. We hope this article provided some clarity on just cause eviction rules in San Diego. Check out our chart below for a quick guide to serving notices at your property! 

If you found this article helpful, follow us on social media. We post daily tips to help you manage your own rental property:

Subscribe to our blog
Share this:
Get in touch with us:

We make owning rental property easy.

Choose Your Next Step

We’ve helped over 1,000 San Diego landlords live the good life and we’re ready to help you too. Whatever you choose, you’re heading in the right direction. You will live the good life!

Good Life Blogs

We believe that education is empowering.

rental property repairs landlord vs tenant responsibilities decorative image

Rental Property Repairs: Landlord vs. Tenant Responsibilities

When it comes to rental property repairs, the responsibility burden between landlord and tenant can quickly lead to a finger-pointing battle. In this blog post, we cover everything you need to know about landlord vs. tenant responsibilities for your rental. With proper understanding, repairs and maintenance issues can be addressed quickly and efficiently.  

Read More »

If you plan to terminate your tennis list agreement, it is important to check with your city rules to better understand what you can and cannot do when terminating a tennis list. Hi everyone, my name is Natalia and I’m here with Good Life Property Management. Today I’m going to go over it. San Diego’s just cause of fiction ordinance. The City of San Diego has adopted the just cause of fiction ordinance, otherly known as the Tense Right to Know. This ordinance basically protects tennis who have lived in a property for two or more years and live in the City of San Diego. There are nine justifiable reasons to terminate a lease agreement in the City of San Diego. The first thing is non-payment of rent. You can terminate a tennis list if they fail to pay rent on time, three consecutive months or six times in a calendar year. You’re also able to begin an eviction if they just stop paying rent entirely. Number two is the violations of obligations of the Tennessee. You are able to terminate a tennis list if they fail to comply with lease agreements such as excessive HWA violations, unauthorized tenants, unauthorized pets and they refuse to correct those issues. The third thing is nuisance. This is usually when the tennis is causing serious damage to the property or common areas and refusing to remedying it when asked and also this means interfering with the enjoyment, safety and the use of the property for neighboring units as well. For example excessive noise violations and HWA requesting that they comply and they refuse to comply. The fourth thing is illegal use. If the tenant is participating in illegal activity or violating the law, this can be grounds for terminating the tenancy. Number five, refusal to renew the lease. This occurs when a tenant refuses to sign a lease renewal of like terms. For example, if you offer a one-year lease extension and the tenant wants to go month to month and they refuse to sign that lease extension, they are technically refusing to sign the lease extension. Rental rate is not considered like terms and you are able to increase the rent. If they are refusing to sign the lease based off of the rental rate, you can terminate the tenants lease as that’s not considered like terms. Number six, refusal to provide access. Align learned is given a series of reasons to access a property such as the change of smoke alarms, make necessary repairs and show the property to a realtor and so forth with a written notice. If the tenant dies access to the landlord with the written notice or they refuse to attempt to reschedule or accommodate another time, then they’re technically refusing access to the property and that is grounds for terminating the tenancy. Number seven is correcting violations, making necessary repairs or constructions. This occurs if you are going to be remodeling the home, renovating the home and the home is going to be unenhabitable for a long time to make these needed construction repairs. In this event, you’re able to terminate the tenancy. Number eight is to withdraw the property from the rental market. This occurs if you plan to sell the property or even if you plan to demolish and rebuild the whole entire property, just whenever you decide to pull out of the rental market. Number nine is owner or relative occupancy. This occurs if the owner or relative of the owner decides to move into the property, you’re able to terminate the tenancy. These are the nine justifiable reasons to not renew your tenants lease. Be sure to check with your local city rules on the guidelines on terminating a tenant’s lease. For more information on renewing leases, be sure to check out our blog on what to consider before renewing your tenant’s lease. Thanks for watching.