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Evictions: When a Tenant Refuses to Leave

Evictions are the worst part of landlording. No landlord would want to experience evicting tenants. However, evictions do happen because there are tenants who are unreliable, break your rules multiple times, and cause a lot of problems. After you give a proper notice to a tenant you decide to evict, he/she may refuse to leave voluntarily. 

An eviction always puts both the landlord and the tenant on the losing end. Time and money are wasted. Moreover, the tenant has to deal with a bad record, placing him in a situation where he/she will be having a hard time finding a new housing. 

On this topic, several questions arise: 

1. What are the steps you can take or things you can expect when an eviction happens?

2. Why is an eviction a highly regulated area of law?

3. What is the time period in which your tenant can respond to an unlawful detainer complaint?

4. What are alternatives to a court case?

5. What are "cash-for-keys" and why would you want to choose this option? 

6. In what situations should you get a specialized real estate attorney to help you?

Let's talk about the first of these 6 questions. What are the steps you can take or things you can expect when an eviction happens?

Below are the steps you can take or things you can expect when an eviction happens. 

1 - Provide a 3-day notice. There are 3-day notices of different kinds. There is a 3-day notice to pay rent or leave, a 3-day notice to perform (start complying with the lease) or leave, and a 3-day notice to quit. The latter is usually given to a tenant who has severely violated your policies. 

2 - Do not file paperwork with the court until the 3-day period has elapsed. If the tenant does not leave after the 3-day period, you can hand off the eviction to an attorney or eviction service. As much as possible, do not deal with an eviction yourself especially if this is your first time doing it. 

3 - The court will give you and the tenant the opportunity to make an allegation. If the court decides that the tenant needs to be evicted, an order will be given which the sheriff will use to schedule an actual physical eviction. Most of the time, evictions are uncontested. 

For the rest of this lesson, existing Landlord Prep students should log-in to the module entitled Ending a Lease - Evictions.

Not a member yet? Join the Landlord Prep: Video E-Course and How-To Tutorials so you can access this section and get the complete DIY landlording course. This will help you stay confident and knowledgeable as a landlord.