New Mexico Eviction Laws: 2024 Step by Step Process & Costs

In the picturesque state of New Mexico, the eviction laws serve as a vital framework governing the relationship between landlords and tenants. These laws, rooted in New Mexico's statutes, are designed to ensure fairness and legality in the potentially challenging process of eviction. 

Navigating these laws can be complex, but understanding them is essential for both landlords, who need to manage their properties effectively, and tenants, who seek to protect their rights and home stability. 

This guide aims to demystify the eviction process in New Mexico, providing clear, concise information to help both parties understand their responsibilities and rights. From outlining legal grounds for eviction to detailing the step-by-step process, and addressing FAQs, this comprehensive guide is an invaluable resource for anyone involved in the New Mexico rental market.

Understanding New Mexico Eviction Laws

In New Mexico, the eviction laws provide a legal framework that balances the interests of landlords and tenants. These laws are designed to protect the rights of both parties while ensuring that rental agreements are honored and properties are managed responsibly. Understanding these laws is crucial for navigating the eviction process correctly and ethically. This section will delve into the specifics of New Mexico's eviction statutes, explaining key concepts and legal requirements. Whether you are a landlord looking to maintain the integrity of your property, or a tenant seeking to safeguard your living situation, a thorough understanding of these laws is indispensable. This guide will offer insights into the nuances of New Mexico's eviction process, helping to navigate the legal landscape with clarity and confidence.

The legal foundation for eviction in New Mexico is established by the New Mexico Residential Landlord and Tenant Act. This Act details the legal procedures and requirements for eviction, ensuring fairness and adherence to the rule of law. It outlines the responsibilities and rights of both landlords and tenants, creating a structured process for evictions.

Grounds for Eviction

Landlords in New Mexico may initiate evictions for various reasons. These include not paying rent on time, breaching lease terms, causing significant damage to the property, engaging in illegal activities, or staying beyond the lease term without renewal.

Notice Requirements

New Mexico law mandates that landlords provide tenants with proper notice before eviction. The notice period varies depending on the reason for eviction, ranging from immediate to several days. These notices must comply with legal standards in terms of delivery and content.

Grounds for Eviction in New Mexico

Understanding the specific grounds for eviction in New Mexico is essential for both landlords and tenants to ensure compliance with state laws. 

Non-Payment of Rent

This is the most straightforward ground for eviction. If a tenant fails to pay rent by the due date, a landlord can initiate the eviction process. This ground is clear-cut, focusing on the failure to meet the basic financial obligation of the lease.

Lease Violations

Lease agreements often include various terms ranging from pet policies to noise restrictions. If a tenant violates any of these agreed terms, it can be grounds for eviction. This category requires landlords to clearly demonstrate how the lease terms were breached.

Property Damage

Causing significant damage to the property that goes beyond normal wear and tear can lead to eviction. This ground is based on the tenant's responsibility to maintain the property in a good condition.

Illegal Activities

Engaging in illegal activities on the rental property is a serious violation. This ground for eviction is invoked in cases of criminal activities taking place on the premises.

Expiration of Lease

A tenant who remains on the property after the lease has expired without a renewal agreement can be evicted. This ground addresses situations where the contractual period of tenancy has ended.

Each of these grounds requires specific procedures and notices, as mandated by New Mexico law, to ensure a lawful and fair eviction process.

Notice Requirements for Eviction in New Mexico

In New Mexico, the eviction process is initiated with specific notices that landlords are required to provide to tenants. These notices vary based on the reason for eviction and are an essential part of the legal procedure. 

The following section outlines the different types of notices required for various eviction scenarios, ensuring that landlords adhere to legal protocols and tenants are given fair warning and opportunity to address the issues. Understanding these notice requirements is crucial for a lawful and orderly eviction process.

Notice for Non-Payment of Rent

A three-day notice is mandatory when rent is overdue. This notice must clearly state the amount owed and provide an opportunity for the tenant to pay the due amount to avoid eviction.

Notice for Lease Violations

For breaches of lease terms, tenants are typically given a seven-day notice. This notice should detail the specific violation and allow the tenant to correct the issue. If unaddressed, it can lead to eviction proceedings.

Notice for Severe Violations

Immediate notice can be issued for serious infractions, such as engaging in illegal activities or causing significant property damage. These situations often don't allow for a remedy period and can lead to immediate eviction steps.

Notice for End of Lease or No Lease

In cases where there is no lease or at the end of a lease term, landlords are required to provide a notice that corresponds to the rental payment period, usually 30 days.

This structured approach to notice requirements ensures that tenants are adequately informed and given a fair chance to address issues before any legal action is taken. It reflects a balance between protecting landlord rights and offering tenants an opportunity to remedy situations, thus maintaining a fair and lawful eviction process.

Step-by-Step Guide to the Eviction Process

The Step-by-Step Guide to the Eviction Process in New Mexico outlines the sequential actions a landlord must take to legally evict a tenant:

The landlord must have a valid legal reason, such as non-payment of rent, lease agreement violations, or other serious breaches.

2. Serve Notice to Tenant

Proper notice must be given in writing, detailing the issue and providing the tenant with the chance to rectify the situation or vacate the premises.

3. Wait for Response or Compliance

The landlord must wait the legally required period for the tenant to address the issue or vacate. 

4. Filing an Eviction Suit

If the tenant fails to comply, the landlord must file an eviction lawsuit in the appropriate court, which involves submitting relevant documents and evidence.

5. Court Hearing

At the court hearing, both landlord and tenant present their sides. The landlord must prove the legal grounds for eviction.

6. Judgment and Eviction Order

If the court rules in the landlord's favor, an eviction order is issued. The tenant may be given a final period to vacate.

7. Eviction Enforcement

If the tenant still doesn't vacate, the eviction order is enforced by a law enforcement officer, ensuring a legal and orderly removal.

This comprehensive process is designed to uphold legal standards and protect the rights of both landlords and tenants during an eviction.

Costs Associated with Eviction in New Mexico

The eviction process in New Mexico, while necessary in certain situations, can entail a variety of costs for both landlords and tenants. This section provides a detailed breakdown of these expenses, offering insights into what each party may need to financially prepare for. 

From court fees to potential relocation costs, understanding these expenses is crucial for effective budgeting and decision-making during the eviction process. The table provided offers a concise overview of each cost category, its description, and estimated expenses, aiding in a clearer financial understanding of eviction implications.

For Landlords

Court Fees

Landlords need to pay court fees when filing an eviction suit, which vary based on the court and the case.

Attorney Fees

Hiring an attorney can significantly increase the cost, especially in complex eviction cases.

Lost Rent

The period when the property is not generating rent, either due to the eviction process or non-payment by the tenant, can be a substantial financial burden.

Property Damage and Turnover Costs

Repairing damages caused by the tenant and preparing the property for new tenants incurs additional expenses.

For Tenants

Tenants may incur costs if they choose to hire an attorney for their defense.

Relocation Costs

If evicted, tenants will have to bear the costs of finding a new place, which might include moving expenses, security deposits, and potential temporary housing costs.

Credit and Rental History Impact

An eviction can negatively affect a tenant’s credit score and rental history, making future rentals more difficult and potentially more expensive.

Cost Type Average Cost ($) Description
Court Filing Fees 70-200 Varies by county and complexity of the eviction case.
Attorney Fees 500-3000 Depending on case complexity and attorney rates.
Lost Rental Income Varies Depends on rental value and duration of the eviction process.
Property Maintenance and Repairs 200-2500 Costs for repairs and getting the property ready for new tenants.
Service of Process Fees 40-150 Costs for serving eviction notices and legal documents.
Sheriff or Marshal Fees 100-400 Fees for enforcement of eviction by law enforcement.
Storage and Removal of Tenant's Property 150-800 Costs for storing or removing tenant’s belongings, if necessary.
Administrative Expenses 50-300 Miscellaneous administrative expenses related to eviction.
Potential Legal Damages (if applicable) Varies Costs in case of legal challenges or wrongful eviction.

This table provides a structured overview of the various costs involved in the eviction process for both landlords and tenants, along with a general idea of the potential expenses. Please note that the actual costs can vary greatly depending on individual circumstances and local regulations.

These cost considerations for both parties highlight the financial impact of the eviction process and the importance of understanding and adhering to tenancy laws.

Strategies to Mitigate Evictions

Strategies to mitigate evictions are crucial for both landlords and tenants to maintain a stable and positive rental experience. 

For landlords, proactive measures like thorough tenant screening, clear and detailed lease agreements, regular property maintenance, and open communication channels can significantly reduce eviction risks. 

On the tenant side, ensuring timely rent payments, adherence to lease terms, maintaining the property, and open communication about any issues can help avoid eviction scenarios. 

Both parties can benefit from understanding and respecting each other's rights and responsibilities, fostering a mutually beneficial relationship and minimizing the likelihood of evictions.

For Landlords

Thorough Tenant Screening

Proper vetting of potential tenants can prevent issues down the line.

Clear Lease Agreements

Detailed and unambiguous lease terms can avoid misunderstandings.

Regular Property Maintenance

Keeping the property in good condition can prevent lease violations related to maintenance.

Effective Communication

Open lines of communication can resolve issues before they escalate.

Flexible Payment Plans

Offering flexibility in case of temporary financial hardships can prevent non-payment evictions.

For Tenants

Timely Rent Payment

Ensuring rent is paid on time is the most effective way to avoid eviction.

Lease Compliance

Adhering strictly to lease terms helps avoid violations.

Property Care

Taking good care of the property prevents issues related to property damage.

Open Communication with Landlord

Discussing any potential issues or concerns early with the landlord can prevent misunderstandings.

Understanding Tenant Rights

Being informed about tenant rights can help in effectively navigating and resolving disputes.

These strategies are designed to help both parties proactively address issues that could lead to eviction, fostering a stable and respectful rental relationship.

Landlord Responsibilities and Tenant Rights

In New Mexico, a balanced rental relationship is underpinned by clearly defined responsibilities and rights. For landlords, this includes maintaining habitability and respecting tenant privacy, while tenants are entitled to a safe living environment and protection under lease terms. This section expands on these crucial aspects, ensuring both parties understand their roles and rights for a harmonious rental experience.

Landlord Responsibilities


Landlords must keep the rental property in a condition that is safe and suitable for living. This includes maintaining structural integrity, providing adequate heating, plumbing, and electrical systems.


Landlords are responsible for repairing any issues that affect the property's habitability, ensuring timely responses to tenant repair requests to maintain a safe living environment.

The lease should be in accordance with state and local laws, offering clear terms and avoiding any clauses that could be deemed unfair or illegal.


Tenants have a right to privacy, with landlords required to provide adequate notice before entering the property, except in emergency situations, ensuring respect for the tenant's space and schedule.


Committing to fair housing practices, landlords must avoid any form of discrimination in selecting tenants or setting rental terms.

Tenant Rights

Safe Living Environment

Tenants are entitled to a living environment that meets basic safety and health standards, with essential utilities and features maintained in good working order.

Fair Treatment

Tenants have the right to be treated fairly and without discrimination, receiving equal opportunities regardless of their background.


A fundamental right to privacy in their rental unit, ensuring that landlords cannot intrude without proper notice and valid reason.

Lease Protections

Tenants can rely on the protections provided by their lease, as long as these terms are legal, offering security and clarity regarding their rental agreement.

Access to legal mechanisms to address issues or disputes, ensuring tenants have avenues to seek redress if their rights are violated or disputes arise.

Frequently Asked Questions

How long does the eviction process take in New Mexico?

The duration varies depending on the complexity of the case and court schedules. Generally, it can take a few weeks to several months.

Can a tenant be evicted without a court order in New Mexico?

No, evictions must follow the legal process, including obtaining a court order.

What can a tenant do if they disagree with an eviction notice?

Tenants can challenge the eviction in court, where they can present their case and defenses.

What happens if a tenant leaves belongings behind after an eviction?

Landlords must follow specific procedures for handling abandoned property, which may involve notification and storage for a certain period.

Can a tenant withhold rent for failure of property maintenance?

Withholding rent can be risky. Tenants should first notify the landlord of the issue and seek legal advice.

Need Help With The New Mexico Eviction Process? Eviction Services Are Available

Between the day-to-day demands of property management and time associated with eviction suits, Hemlane can help. We offload things like rent collection, legal notices, and retaining counsel.

Receive the rent you’re owed while minimizing costly court fees. Explore our eviction services and on-demand delinquency management today.

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