Evicting a tenant can be an exhausting process, and, understandably, property owners should want to avoid the hassle. However, there are times when it may be necessary for your protection (and bottom line).
Hiring the best property management company Atlanta offers is a smart investment because they can make the eviction process as painless as possible. The right property managers can also provide valuable guidance to avoid the process by placing better renters. When and why can a property owner evict a renter? Read here for expert insights!
Why Should Rental Property Owners Evict?
First, you might be asking, "what is eviction?" The eviction process is a legal way to remove a resident from a rental property. Real estate investors must follow federal and state laws governing evictions, making it crucial to have a good "why" before removing a renter from a property.
Property managers can help you verify legal reasons to evict a resident, including the following lease violations.
Failure to Pay Rent
When you have a renter who stops paying rent, it is grounds for eviction. Property owners should gather documentation to prove past-due payments, log sent reminders, and every effort made to collect the rent.
Illegal Activity On the Property
If a tenant engages in illegal activity on the property, property owners can start the eviction process. Investors must provide the tenant with a written notice of eviction that explains the reasons for eviction and the number of days until eviction procedures begin.
Lease Agreement Violations
A renter can be evicted from a rental property if they violate the lease or rental agreement terms. In addition to rent nonpayment or illegal activities, lease violations can include having a pet despite a no-pet clause, smoking despite a no-smoking clause, or adding a roommate who is not on the lease.
Damaging the Property
If a renter refuses to pay for repairs, property damage (intentional or accidental) can be grounds for removal. As part of the eviction lawsuit, an investor can remove the renter and seek compensation for repairing the damage.
Disturbing Neighbors or Other Tenants
Receiving ongoing complaints about a renter's behavior could be grounds for removal. For example, when a tenant violates noise ordinances, threatens other tenants or neighbors, or behaves in a way that disturbs other residents, property owners should consult the lease and an attorney to pursue an eviction.
Refusing a Legal Rent Increase or Landlord Entry
While it's important for property owners to follow tenant privacy laws when entering a property, residents don't have the right to refuse legal entry. Renters that won't let you in the property or refuse to comply with new lease rules or a rate increase at renewal can qualify for a legal eviction.
When (and How) Can You Evict a Tenant?
Timing is essential when removing a resident before a lease ends. Instead of changing the locks and removing a resident's belongings, work with a property manager and eviction attorney to comply with Georgia laws regulating evictions.
If you've verified a legal reason to evict, it's time to move forward. The eviction notice, also known as "notice to quit," begins the eviction procedure. This notice of eviction gives the tenant a set amount of time to resolve the issues or leave permanently. In addition, the notice will spell out exactly why the process has started.
File Paperwork With the Court
If a renter doesn't rectify the problem and is still in the rental house, a property owner can take the next step to file paperwork in the appropriate court. The court may issue the summons and affidavit. Before the hearing, these papers must be delivered to the renter by the sheriff or process server.
Avoid Combative Behavior
While it might be tempting to turn a cold shoulder to your renter or stop being a good landlord, any retaliatory behavior or refusal of services could leave you with a bad renter in your property.
After serving notice and filing the paperwork, investors should keep communication with the renter to a minimum. However, it's crucial to respond to requests and keep up with normal property management tasks to avoid any perception that you aren't fulfilling your responsibilities as a landlord.
Even if the eviction process takes several weeks before you receive a ruling from the court, maintain a professional relationship with your resident. If you're not sure how to deal with a tenant after starting an eviction, an eviction attorney or a property manager can help!
An Atlanta Property Manager Gets the Eviction Process and Timing Right
The eviction process can be complicated, time-consuming, and expensive. Working with the best property management company Atlanta offers is the best way to ease your stress and successfully remove a bad renter while avoiding additional legal problems or costs. If you're struggling with a bad tenant, Compass Property Management is here to help! Reach out to our team to learn more about our property management services.
Learn more about a thorough eviction process! Download our free Tenant Eviction Checklist.