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When Eviction is The Wrong Call

Stressed Bar Harbor Property Manager on the Phone Evictions are occasionally an unavoidable aspect of the business for Bar Harbor property managers and rental property owners. Eviction isn’t always the best course of action when you’re dealing with a troublesome renter. Evictions can be expensive and time-consuming for both you and your renter. The eviction procedure is typically not advantageous to either the landlord or the tenant. Therefore, it may not always be the best decision to evict a renter. In these circumstances, you and your tenant are likely to be better off if you can identify alternatives to eviction.

Your Otherwise Good Renter Falls Behind on Rent

To have a lucrative rental property, you must have a decent renter. Even reliable renters may experience financial troubles, job loss, or other reasons that prohibit them from paying their rent. Non-payment of rent is without question a violation of their lease. But it may not be smart to evict a tenant for failing to pay one or more rent installments. This is especially true if the tenant has a habit of timely payments and is diligent about keeping the property clean and in good repair.

Working with your renter to find a solution to assist them in making up any unpaid rent may be the best option in such cases. It’s certainly better than eviction. As long as the renter’s financial problems are temporary, this could be a good way to prevent the price of trying to evict and replace the tenant, together while winning the renter’s thankfulness. In the long haul, this plan is more likely to assist you in recovering all of the unpaid rent and keep a trustworthy renter, that is, if you’re prepared to face a small financial cost in the short term.

You Don’t Have Clear Legal Grounds

There are some circumstances in which eviction can result in more legal issues than it would fix. Avoid these at all costs. The vagueness of your legal grounds for eviction is an example of these problems. If your renter has been making complaints on the habitability of the home, either to you or to the local housing authority, when you haven’t taken steps to resolve the complaint, your idea to evict the renter might be viewed as retaliatory and be declined.

Another illustration would be if a renter who belongs to a protected class felt that your eviction was against them. The federal Fair Housing Act prohibits discrimination in housing decisions, including evictions, based on a renter’s religion, age, race, marital status, sexual preferences, and more. Your renter may sue you if your eviction is thought to be discriminatory.

Last but not least, use caution while trying to evict someone for non-payment of rent or when taking partial rent payments. Accepting any rent from the tenant could result in you losing your ability to evict them legally and putting yourself in an extremely challenging position. This is because receiving partial payments creates an unspoken agreement between you and your tenant that a judge will likely consider a continuance of your lease arrangement, even if it is not in writing. If you lack clearly defined legal grounds for eviction, you should wait until the issue becomes clearer.

You’d Rather Keep Your Money

The eviction procedure is costly, and not simply because legal fees are involved. Rent payments and frequently any cleaning or maintenance of the property will stop once your tenant learns you’ll be trying to evict them from the rental property. This often results in missed wages as well as increased maintenance and repair costs.

Consider the possibility of simply paying your renter to leave rather than going through the costly and time-consuming eviction process. This kind of “cash for keys” arrangement can make it possible for a renter who is having financial difficulties to move out amicably or might persuade a stubborn renter to leave as soon as possible. Even a lump sum cash payout of several hundred dollars is much less than the cost of evicting the renter, which may seem counter-intuitive if you’re trying to get them to give you back money they owe you.

Avoid Eviction with Quality Property Management

Choosing a trustworthy tenant with a great history of on-time rent payments is one of the best strategies to avoid evictions altogether. However, that could be tough, particularly if you have other things to accomplish. At Real Property Management Acadia, we properly vet each applicant for a rental unit, selecting only the most qualified people. If any issues develop in the future, our Bar Harbor property management advisors can help you choose the best plan of action to take. Contact us online today to learn more!

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.

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