How to Get Rid of a Bad Tenant: 7 Sneaky Ways
All landlords know the nightmare of dealing with bad tenants. Maybe they don’t pay their rent on time. Maybe they don’t take care of their home. The worst tenants get into trouble, engage in criminal activity, or are just rude.
It’s essential to get rid of tenants who are toxic to you, the other tenants, and your business. You may waste money with unpaid rent and any possible fixes and renovations. But before you deal with that, you need to kick out your tenants.
If you want to know how to get rid of a bad tenant, here are 7 effective strategies.
1. Raise the Rent
Do your bad tenants pay their rent on time? A great way to kick them out is by raising the rent.
Rent raises are not uncommon, but no renters enjoy paying more for a roof over their head. As long as you give plenty of notice, this is completely acceptable.
When they notice their rent is getting expensive, they will look elsewhere for a new place to live.
What about your other tenants? It’s unfair to raise their rent, especially if they behave well. There’s no law that says you also have to change their rent.
If you’re concerned your bad tenants will discover only their rent is raised, give an excuse. Say something like, their apartment is older or has more liability than other apartments.
2. Don’t Renew Their Lease
What if raising the rent is out of the question? Don’t renew their lease. Rather than sending them a renewal notice, send them an eviction notice.
Contrary to popular belief, you don’t have to renew a tenant’s lease. But you may have to justify their non-renewal.
You can send them a notice, saying there has to be repair work done and no tenants should be living in the apartment at that time.
If you know there’s no repair work required for that apartment, explain some of the apartments are under renovation and no tenants should be there.
If you decide to go this route, offer a security deposit refund. By law, you need to give them plenty of notice. 30 days minimum is the law, but give more for courtesy.
3. Help Them Find a New Home
If you don’t renew the lease, offer to help them find a new home. Refer a competitor, so they can deal with the bad tenants. Speak with other landlords or apartment complexes. Recommend different websites and open listings.
What if the tenants need to get out, their lease is up, and they have nowhere to go? Talk to local homeless shelters or even let them stay an extra month.
What if you can’t find a new home for them and they weren’t terrible tenants? Some tenants have minor issues. They could be loud, receive rude complaints from neighbors, or be too demanding.
But what if they paid rent on time and didn’t destroy the property? Offer a shorter lease while you search for a new house.
4. Threaten Legal Action
Some tenants are bad, but not that bad. Other tenants are just really bad. These tenants engage in criminal activity, are a threat to the neighborhood, and do other sketchy business or actions.
If there’s a way you can threaten legal action, take that route.
But you need proof. Did you witness any drug trafficking or possession? Do they have a history of criminal activity? Were assault or battery reports filed by the neighbors? This is all proof you can use in court.
What should the consequences be? Some landlords are happy to just legally kick out criminal tenants. Others want to press charges and even force the tenant to serve jail time. This all depends on the tenants and your situation.
5. Cash for Keys
Is nothing else forcing your bad tenants out? No one can deny free cash.
This is why giving cash to bad tenants is one of the best ways to kick them out. If you have extra cash to spare, offer cash for the keys. You can even promise to refund a portion of the rent they paid.
This strategy is also cheaper for a lot of landlords. A full eviction can cost several thousand in unpaid rent.
If you just fork up a few hundred dollars toward the end of their lease, will that set you back that much? That way, you can quickly sell the house.
6. Find Illegal Activity
This is similar to the taking legal action point mentioned previously. But some tenants would rather not get law enforcement involved, even if the tenants participate in illegal activity.
You can simply prove they engage in criminal activity, and use the proof to kick them out.
First, you have to find and prove they’re criminals. Start by conducting regular inspections.
If you state in the rental agreement that you have the right to inspect a tenant’s property, this is legal. Otherwise, inspecting a tenant’s house could amount to a violation of their right to privacy, and they could sue you for that.
So you don’t seem suspicious, you should conduct inspections on all tenants. Next, run criminal reports and background checks if you haven’t done so.
7. Talk to the Tenants
If you’re the type of landlord who gets to the point, it’s best to just approach the bad tenant. Talk with them and explain why they need to leave.
Ideally, you should first approach them and explain why they’re a nuisance.
Some people are set in their ways and don’t realize they’re being rude or disruptive. But if this proves unsuccessful, personally tell them they need to leave.
You can also offer any of the previous bribes. Give them cash, refund their rent, extend their leave slightly, or help them find another home.
Now You Know How to Get Rid of a Bad Tenant
Every landlord will deal with bad tenants. But if the situation is becoming unbearable, you need to know how to get rid of a bad tenant.
There are some legal restrictions. You have to give plenty of notice before you end the lease. If they need to leave before their lease is up, you may have to bribe them. But you control how you kick out your tenants.
Do you need to quickly sell your house after you kick out the bad tenants? We can help.