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Old 10-12-2006, 07:48 PM   #1
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rental units? tennants from he!!


Ok this is my first house and it has a rental upstairs. I jumped in head first i guess. Well anyway, i just got rid of one slob but the rent was paid by the state (our tax dollars at work) however everything was trashed. Now my new tennants are clean and quiet but dont pay rent! They already have a month on me, now they avoid me like the plague. I served them a noterised document that stated they were to vacate the premises in 3 days. There still here! Sneaking in in the middle of the night and crap like that.Im going to buy a new exterior door for the main entrance to the upstairs lock it and keep the key. Question is, am i within my rights? any thoughts?

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Old 10-12-2006, 07:52 PM   #2
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rental units? tennants from he!!


It varies by state, but as a rule, you can not lock them out. Being a slum-lord is not all that it is cracked up to be.

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Old 10-12-2006, 08:20 PM   #3
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rental units? tennants from he!!


The only way to get them out is eviction. If this is how your state operates.
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Old 10-13-2006, 06:07 AM   #4
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I shoulda bought a truck instead
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Old 10-13-2006, 07:00 AM   #5
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Do you have a written lease with this tenant?
Is it a thorough and detailed lease?

Did you have the tenant fill out an application prior to renting to them?
Did you check references?
Did you do a credit check?
Did you ask on the application of they have ever been evicted or not paid rent to previous landlords?
Did you ask how long they were at the previous rental?
Did you ask if they received their security deposit back from the previous rentals?
Did you call their previous landlords and ask if they paid rent on time, if they left the property in good condition, did they follow the lease...?


It is better to do a thorough application review before renting to people that you do not know.

It is easy to rent to the first person that shows up with money but it is much harder and expensive to get people out that fail to comply with the terms of the lease.
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Old 10-13-2006, 07:03 AM   #6
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rental units? tennants from he!!


It may be wise to get the assistance of a lawyer until you get the experienced need to deal with tenants as this.
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Old 10-13-2006, 10:52 AM   #7
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rental units? tennants from he!!


Yes lawyer. Find one that specializes in evictions. After your first eviction you might be able to do the second one without a lawyer. I've done many illegal evictions but it is risky business. In my state the tenants can sue me but in some states illegal evictions can be criminal.
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Old 10-13-2006, 12:39 PM   #8
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My uncle has been renting properties for close to thirty years now. He still uses a lawyer every single time he has to evict someone (he's in NY which is probably makes the situation worse than eleswhere). Absent many more details, I'm afraid the only advice you are probably going to get over the internet, is that is that it is going to be a pain in the kneck. Sorry.
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Old 10-16-2006, 06:28 PM   #9
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rental units? tennants from he!!


Greetings--

Couple of comments--

First-- I am NOT an atty. These are just my personal opinions and comments.

NO_- In general, you CANNOT , without due process, lock a tenant out of the property.

YES-- Speak with an atty. Laws vary from state to state but in general, you cannot simply remove someone from your property without due process. Doesnt make any sense, but hey-- laws. Because of the laws that are in place, if you improperly (read illegally) remove a tenant or keep them from accessing their property (even if its in/on YOUR property) you may be liable to them for damages. In Texas, those damages can be up to 3 times the actual amount-- OUCH !!

It took me about 4 months, paperwork, about $600 worth of court fees, constable fees for serving papers, trip to court, ect to get a tenant off a property I own. In addition, in all of this time-- there was 6 months of lost rent (2 mo overdue and 4 month overdue while the eviction process took its course). The Court ruled in my favor and said I was due the monies-- but-- collecting was another matter-- can't squeeze blood from a stone eh. But-- tenant is gone.

One last comment-- DON'T WAIT. As soon as the tenant is overdue with rent-- start the process !!
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Old 10-16-2006, 07:40 PM   #10
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Better to screen and check the applicants before they move in then have to to get them out.
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Old 10-16-2006, 11:15 PM   #11
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Do not change that lock. You could open yourself up to civil litigation. The question is one of contract. Did they sign a contract? If not they are considered month by month. Which means you can evict however you must serve them with a notice to evict. Would advise running it by a attorney who will just charge a flat rate fee. Better yet call your clerk of the circuit courts office ask them how to serve a notice of eviction legally. Finally failure to pay rent doesn't get you auto right to evict this is a state by state issue. Hell if they new how to work the system they could stay there for several months without paying rent. Until the matter went to eviction court.


Last edited by 747; 10-16-2006 at 11:18 PM.
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