As a landlord you’re bound to have your share of less than desirable tenants who create a nuisance, damage the property, delay the rent, or put you in unpleasant situations because of their behavior. In any of these situations you’d want to find yourself a new tenant! However, you need to have legal reasons for evicting said tenant. As a quick tip, here are four common reasons you can evict bad tenants on legal grounds at any time during their stay on your property.
Violation of your rent or lease agreement
Rental agreements are legal contracts.A violation of points marked in the agreement can be a valid reason for eviction. For instance, if you agreed beforehand on a ‘no pets’ clause but your tenant blatantly takes in strays without informing you, legally you can begin the eviction process to get rid of the tenant.
Delay in rent payments or failure to pay altogether
Some counties and cities offer a legal time buffer for rent payments. However, a tenant who habitually pays the rent later than the rent day listed in your contract can be evicted. Also, if your tenant fails to pay the rent for certain months or for several months at a stretch, this too can be grounds for eviction.
If you have tenants who are repeatedly paying rent late a tip would be to generate a paper trail by sending ‘Late Rent’ notices to your tenant. Keep a copy of each notice for yourself so if you end up in court you can prove you had sent the tenant notices.
Damage to the property.
While you can evict a tenant for damaging your property, it is very important to know the difference between ‘wear and tear’ and real damage. Fingerprint smudges near light switches or scuffs on the hardwood floor do not qualify as damage. But, if your tenants run their car through the garage wall or knock out a floorboard in the kitchen then it’s a damage which can be considered on legal grounds for eviction.
Remember, this reason may not be valid if your tenant does the repairs himself and clears the issue with you. For instance, if your tenant breaks the garage door and replaces it, paying the charges for the door and its installation, and clears it with you, then you can’t evict the tenant on the grounds of damaging the property.
The use of property for illegal purposes.
Lastly, you have the right to evict a tenant if he or she uses your property for illegal purposes. For instance, if the tenant converts your residential apartment into commercial space to run a private business or uses it to sell narcotics then you can evict the tenant legally.