In 2016, 2.3 million evictions were filed in the United States. That’s a rate of around 4 evictions every minute.
Over the last couple of decades, incomes have remained relatively flat while housing costs have soared. Because those median asking rents have increased, not everyone can continue to afford the homes in which they reside.
The causes and effects of evictions vary dramatically, depending on the city or county.
Be that as it may, there are common reasons for eviction that most landlords will face at one time or another.
Either way, as a landlord, you should be familiar with what those are. Keep reading to find out the top 5 reasons why tenants get evicted.
1. The Tenant Stops Paying Rent
Nonpayment of rent is the most apparent reason for a tenant getting evicted.
Most judges and courts are very reasonable when it comes to a failure to pay rent. They make very few exceptions to when a non-paying tenant can stay.
However, lease enforcement can be complicated and exhausting, especially when it pertains to commercial space.
2. The Tenant Damages the Property
We’ve all pictured in our minds the potential damage done by a disrespectful tenant. And many landlords have witnessed just that.
However, most property damage occurs by accident.
For example, in some areas of the United States, pools are ubiquitous. However, if they aren’t maintained regularly, irreparable damage is possible.
In the long run, it can cost thousands of dollars for a landlord to fix the damage done to a pool when it isn’t properly maintained.
Some tenants opt to do renovations on their rentals, without the go-ahead or permits. If a tenant installs skylights or puts a hot tub on the upper deck of his home, it could result in thousands of dollars in roof or water damage.
Hoarding can cause property damage too. As long as the person isn’t claiming that it’s a mental disability, hoarding is a legitimate reason to terminate a lease.
If a tenant knocks out a wall or performs any major renovations without permission, it’s cause for termination.
3. The Tenant Violates the Lease
Not everyone reads the many fine lines of their lease agreement, nor does every tenant adhere to every single rule and regulation.
Many violations can warrant an eviction. We’ll name just a few.
Residents often assume they can move in a cousin or a boyfriend, and let them live in their rental as long as they want. But that isn’t necessarily true, depending on their lease.
Most leases don’t allow for extended guests or occupants other than those listed on the contract.
Getting a pet when it isn’t allowed, or sneaking one in, is cause for eviction. Even having more pets than what is allotted is cause for removal.
There are only so many loud parties, or screaming fights neighbors will put up with. And the more times police show up, the closer a tenant gets to eviction.
Plus, when complaints are filed against tenants, the police can fine the landlord. At the first complaint, make sure you tell your tenants they’re violating their lease.
And if you don’t have that clause in your leases, start adding it in there.
Improper Rental Use
Typically, home-based business owners are allowed to operate out of their dwellings.
However, if a tenant turns their home into a coffee shop, that high-traffic business venture probably warrants an eviction.
Subletting Without Approval
Most leases prohibit subletting without approval from the landlord or rental company. If your tenant does so without that approval, you should be able to evict them, as long as you put it in the lease.
4. The Lease Expires
One of the reasons why most contracts only last the duration of a year or 2, is because you can never be sure of a tenant until you rent to them.
If a tenant refuses to move out after their lease ends, you’re left with a squatter.
But a lease expiring is reason enough on its own to evict a tenant. You don’t need any other purpose to decide not to allow a particular tenant to continue occupying that building.
5. There Is Illegal Drug Activity
If a resident is actively committing a crime, local government and the police want to know about it.
In many states, a landlord is allowed to terminate a lease with only 24 hours notice if there is drug or crime-related activity.
What Is the Eviction Process?
The formal eviction process is pretty much the same across the board.
Lock-outs or utility shut-offs are usually illegal, so many landlords get in trouble for doing it that way.
Typically, these are the steps for a formal eviction process:
- Call a reputable lawyer
- Terminate the lease with the correct notice
- If the tenant doesn’t leave, file an action with eviction court
- Attend the hearing
- Win the judgment
- Hire the police department
- Show up with the cops on “eviction day” and take possession of the rental unit
- Change the locks
- Get the apartment ready for a new tenant
The best thing you can do as a landlord is not to take matters into your own hands. Go through the proper steps to make sure that you don’t get into any legal trouble as a landlord.
Know the Common Reasons for Eviction
If you’re a landlord, you should know and understand the common reasons for eviction.
If you know it’s time to evict a tenant, you’ll get the best results by following proper procedure instead of taking matters into your own hands.
Do you have a nightmare tenant you can’t wait to evict? Contact us today to learn how we can help!