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When Eviction is The Wrong Call

Stressed Amsterdam Property Manager on the PhoneAs an Amsterdam landlord and rental property owner, you must understand that evictions come with the job. Eviction is not always the solution, though, when you find yourself with a difficult tenant. Evictions are often time-consuming and pricey for both you and your tenant. In fact, most of the time, neither the property owner nor the tenant benefits from the eviction process. This means that evicting a tenant might not always be the right call. When you find yourselves in a position like this, it’s better for you and your tenant to find an alternative to eviction.

Your Otherwise Good Tenant Falls Behind on Rent

A good tenant is key to owning a profitable rental property. Sometimes even good tenants can run into economic difficulties, lose a job, or otherwise find themselves unable to meet their rent payment. It’s certain that non-payment of rent is a clear violation of their lease. But evicting a tenant for missing one or even several rent payments might be too harsh of a penalty. This is especially true if the tenant was previously paying on time and is doing a good job keeping up with cleaning and property maintenance.

For this reason, it would be a good idea to look for an alternative to eviction. Maybe you can talk to your tenant and look for ways to help him/her make up for the missing rent payments. For as long as the tenant’s financial difficulties are temporary, then this should be a great way to move forward. You spare yourself the expense of evicting and replacing your tenant while earning their heartfelt gratitude, too. Yes, you might have to take a financial hit in the short term; but, in so doing, you can keep a good tenant, making it possible for you to recover all of the missing rent payments in the long term!

You’d Rather Keep Your Money

The eviction process will include a lot of payments, even apart from all the legal fees. Once the tenant gets word that he/she is about to be evicted from the rental home, he/she will eventually stop paying rent — this means that cleaning or upkeep of the property will also stop. This often leads to both lost income and higher cleaning and repair expenses.

So that you don’t have to deal with the expense and hassle of the eviction process, consider simply paying your tenant to move out. This type of “cash for keys” arrangement could enable a tenant experiencing financial difficulty to leave on good terms or urge them to be out of the property sooner. Bizarre as it may be, offering money to someone who owes you money, but even a lump sum cash payment of several hundred dollars is far less than you’d spend forcing the tenant out through an eviction.

You Don’t Have Clear Legal Grounds

Ultimately, you don’t want to create a situation where your eviction leads to legal problems rather than solve anything at all. No landlord wants to be in this situation. For example, your eviction could be filled with ambiguity in regard to legal grounds for it. If your tenant has complained about the property’s habitability, either directly to you or the local housing authority, and you haven’t taken steps to address the complaint, your attempt to evict the tenant could be deemed retaliatory and dismissed.

Another very possible scenario is that the eviction will be viewed as discriminating against a tenant who is part of a protected class. Evicting a tenant based on their age, religion, skin color, family status, sexual preferences, and more is illegal, and you could end up getting sued by your tenant if you try to do so.

Finally, it would be wise not to accept partial rent payments before or after eviction for non-payment of rent. This will only lead to losing on legal grounds for eviction– if you choose to accept any amount of rent from the tenant. This is because accepting partial payments creates an implicit agreement between you and your tenant that a judge will likely deem a continuation of your lease agreement, even if it isn’t in writing. It would be wise to wait for the dust to settle before deciding on the eviction — especially when the legal grounds for it are a bit murky.

 

One of the best ways to avoid evictions entirely is to find a good tenant with a strong history of on-time rental payments. It can be difficult to do that, though, especially when you have other things on your mind. At Real Property Management Bozeman, we carefully screen all rental applicants to find only the best possible candidates for your rental property. Then, if any problems do arise in the future, our Amsterdam property management experts can help guide you through the best course of action to take. To learn more, contact us online or call 406-586-2226 today!

We are pledged to the letter and spirit of U.S. policy for the achievement of equal housing opportunity throughout the Nation. See Equal Housing Opportunity Statement for more information.