Move Out of Your Home
Stop an eviction by leaving your rental home

You can make plans to find another home -- but still come to court.

If you don’t have a defense or don’t want to stay in your home, the best answer may be to move out of your home quickly.

Moving out of your home can stop the eviction trial (1st cause), but it won’t stop the money claims trial (2nd cause). You still should go to court for your eviction trial and understand your options for the money lawsuit.

Moving out to avoid eviction: 3 key things to know

1. You can stop the eviction if you move out before the trial date. Make sure to tell the landlord you’re leaving, return the keys, and take photos of the cleaned home.

2. You still need to come to court to make sure the eviction case is dismissed, because you’ve moved out.

3. You may still have to deal with the 2nd Trial on Money, to deal with the landlord’s claims you owe them money.

How to Move Out and End the Eviction Case

Once you decide that you want to move out of your home, take these steps to protect yourself:

  1. Clean up the property. Make sure it’s empty. 
  2. Take photos of your home to prove that it’s empty and clean. If there is any damage or bad living conditions, take photos of them.
  3. Tell your landlord that you have left, by sending them a written note, text message, or phone call.
  4. Return your keys to your landlord before the court trial begins. This can be either before court, or at court before the trial begins.
  5. Come to the eviction trial at court, and make sure that your case is dismissed. You can show the photos and note to your landlord as proof that you have left the home. 
  6. Respond to the money claims that your landlord has made, about money they say you owe once you are served. You have 28 days to file an answer with the Clerk of Courts, and then to go to the Money Trial. Read more about how to protect yourself from money claims here.

Find Other Housing Options

If you need help in finding an affordable place to live after moving out, reach out to groups that can help you to find assistance or shelters.

These resources are for Hamilton County, Ohio. Find housing legal aid and financial help for other locations here.

Find help with housing and rent assistance

Call United Way at 2-1-1, to see if you qualify for financial assistance and what housing programs they might connect you with.

Find temporary housing

For a list of local shelters in Hamilton County, Ohio, call the Central Access Point Line (or, CAPline) at 513-381-SAFE (7233).

Find Legal Help

Get legal information or speak with a free lawyer at the court’s Help Center 

Visit or call the Help Center at 513-946-5650 to get legal information or to make a free 40 minute appointment with a lawyer. They cannot represent you in court. For more information, visit room 113 of the Hamilton County Courthouse or visit

Find a Lawyer to Represent You in Court 

Call Legal Aid Society of Cincinnati at 513-241-9400, or go to You may qualify for a free lawyer. If eligible, Legal Aid could represent you in court.

Hire a private lawyer

Visit or call 513-381-8359 for a referral. You can ask them about the Modest Means Program. This may let you get a private lawyer for a more affordable price.

© 2019 Hamilton County Municipal Help Center