SIMPLIFIED TENANCY AND EVICTION PROCESSES

SIMPLIFIED TENANCY AND EVICTION PROCESSES

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Eviction is the process of getting a tenant out of a rental property. Eviction may be done only according to the law and for appropriate reasons. A lease or rental agreement states the beginning and end of the tenancy period, how much the rent is and the date of the month it will be paid, the do’s and don’ts entailing living in the property, and any other relevant information needing to be spelled out between the landlord and tenant.

There are different types of tenancy depending on the type of agreement the landlord and tenant sign. These include:

Month-to-month tenancy

Month-to-month is periodic tenancy where the rental agreement is renewed every month. Periodic tenancy only has a starting date with no termination date. In some cases, there is no written rental agreement, and a verbal agreement is concluded between the tenant and the landlord. But wise landlords put even a month-to-month agreement in writing so there can be no mistakes.

Fixed-term tenancy

The tenancy lasts for a defined period of time, for example one year, and may not be terminated earlier without cause. The landlord must allow a good, paying tenant to remain; and the tenant is obligated to pay rent for the full 12 months or whatever the term is. Renewal of the agreement happens after the term expires if the landlord and tenant want. It gives tenants security and dependable income to landlords.

Some of the reasons that might call for the landlords to issue Free Eviction Notice to the tenants include:

Delaying or refusal to pay rent

If the tenant withholds rent payment for a time or delays payments past the agreed time, the landlord can issue the tenant an eviction notice. If the tenant refuses to move out, the landlord can go to court to force him out.

Violation of the tenants’ agreement guidelines

The tenant agreement form contains all the guidelines and standards to be followed and maintained by the tenants. For example there are the noise regulation guidelines, whether pets may be kept, and requirements for peaceful coexistence among the tenants. If a tenant violates any of these guidelines repeatedly, an eviction could be in order.

Personal reasons by the house owner

The landlord might have personal interest and reasons to evict tenants. This, however, should be justified, and the landlord should have a strong ground to issues an eviction notice.

There are different types of notices that can be offered to the tenants based on the different reasons for eviction. These notices include:

Pay rent or Quit notices

These notices are issued to lease tenants who refuse to pay rent or who pay it late. They are given a three-day pay or quit notice. Within this three days, they should be able to clear all their outstanding balances or else the landlord can take legal action against them

Cure or Quit notices

These are given to tenants who violate the tenancy agreement. The three-day notice of cure or quit is given as a grace period to rectify mistakes.

Unconditional quit notices

There is no grace period for rectifying your misdeeds. This is mostly issued to habitual non-payers of or rent or those who repeatedly violate the lease or rental agreement. Within three days tenants should vacate the premises or else face an Unlawful Detainer hearing in court.

If tenants fail to adhere to the demands of the eviction notice, landlords may sue with an Unlawful Detainer suit. It says a tenant is unlawfully occupying someone else’s premises. With presentation of all the necessary information, the court can order a tenant off the premises within a fixed amount of time, and sheriff’s deputies move the tenant out.

However it is possible for tenants to fight an eviction lawsuit if they have the necessary information. There are different ways to pose a defense against a lawsuit brought against tenants, so inexperienced landlords are advised to hire an attorney.

Defenses include:

If the landlord attempted ‘self-help eviction’. 

This includes changing the locks or withholding some services such as power supply and water supply in order to pressure the tenant to vacate the premises. These steps are unlawful and can be used against a landlord in court.

Discrimination

Under the Fair Housing Act, landlords should not evict tenants based on discriminatory grounds, such as race, religion, color or gender. In case of discrimination, the tenant may sue the landlord.

Maintaining of the rental unit

It is the landlord’s responsibility to hold up his end of the bargain of the tenancy agreement. The landlord should maintain services such drainage, sanitation services and others. If not, the landlord can be in legal trouble.

If landlords and tenants both abide  by the lease or rental agreement, they should be able to coexist in a happy business relationship. If not, either party has recourse to the courts for redress.

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