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The Reasons You Can (and Can’t) Evict a Tenant

Eviction Notice in an EnvelopeKnowing when and how to evict a tenant is one of many factors that go into being an effective landlord. Read on if you’re not familiar with the eviction process or want to learn when you can (and can’t) evict a renter. We’ll go through the most common reasons landlords evict tenants, as well as the stages involved in the eviction process, in this blog post.

Understanding Just Cause

All Taunton property managers need to understand that eviction is a legal process in which you must seek a court order to remove a renter from your property You can’t just change the locks or throw a tenant’s things out the window. Both of these measures would be in violation of the rights of your tenant.

To evict a tenant, you must have “just cause,” as defined by the law. If you have just cause to evict a renter, it means you have a legal reason to do so, such as nonpayment of rent, property damage, or breaching the lease terms. You cannot remove a tenant unless there is just cause.

Reasons You Can Evict

Unpaid rent is one of the most common reasons landlords expel tenants. If your tenant does not pay their rent on time, you can issue them formal notice that they have a set number of days to pay or vacate the property, as required by state law. You can begin the eviction process if the tenant does not act accordingly. Remember to keep to the terms of your contract of lease and all applicable laws both state and local.

An additional typical cause for eviction is property damage by the renter. You can give your tenant a formal notice to repair the damage or vacate if they have caused serious damage to the property beyond usual wear and tear. Noncompliance by the tenant means you are within your rights to file for eviction.

Breaking other terms in the lease agreement provides more reasons for evicting a renter. For instance, if your renter has a pet and your lease prohibits pets, you can serve them with a written notice to quit the property or remove the animal. You may file for eviction if the renter disregards the warning as per the terms of the lease. This is true for all other terms of the lease.

Reasons You Can’t Evict

Additionally, there are a few reasons why you cannot evict a renter, even though they have committed an act that would justify eviction. For instance, you cannot remove a renter because they wanted improvements to the property or started complaining about the rental unit’s upkeep. Moreover, it is illegal for you to evict a tenant on the grounds of national origin, religion, familial situation, race, sex, color, or disability. These designated groups cannot legally be used for a cause for eviction, and attempting to do so may end in discrimination litigation.

The Eviction Process

If you are in the unfortunate case of having to expel a renter, there are some steps you need to consider. To start, you will issue a written notification to the tenant stating the basis for the eviction and the deadline by which they must leave the property. You must then file an eviction petition with the court and have the renter served. A default judgment might be obtained in your favor if the renter does not appear at their court date. Finally, if the tenant refuses to go, you can have the legal authority in your area evict them.

Although forcibly removing a tenant is never a nice experience, sometimes it is unavoidable. Eviction is a painful procedure, and knowing why you can (and can’t) do it will help you deal with the hardship of these situations.

If you’re worried about being evicted, it’s a good idea to talk to a professional about your options. Contact Real Property Management Success to speak to a local rental property professional today at 774-840-5140.

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.