Ask Kari – Episode 3 – When To Start the Eviction Process
This Month’s Question comes from John in Los Angeles:
“Hi Kari, how do I know when to start the eviction process?”
Hi John! This is such an important question. The answer involves looking at the tenant’s rental payment history and overall impact on the community. Let me give you a few quick tips:
Tip 1: Set a firm date to start the eviction process.
At Sky Properties, the 15th is the day we chose to look at all tenants who have not paid rent and decide whether to proceed with eviction or not. In a way, it comes down to drawing a line in the sand somewhere. Consider that if you start the process too early, you don’t have as good of an opportunity to recover the rent and not go through the eviction process. If you start the process too late, you lose time in completing the process and renting to an on-time paying tenant sooner than later. In general, we have found the 15th to be our line in the sand.
With that said, if the situation involves a tenant with a long history of being a problem tenant, consider starting the process immediately by serving a 3-day notice on the 2nd of the month, and starting the process with your eviction attorney at the expiration of the 3-day notice. This is an opportunity to improve the overall community of the building by ridding it of a bad tenant.
Tip 2: Evaluate the whole situation.
Discover what their situation is and weigh it against their rental history with you. Is it a one-time problem or a long-term one? Are they a good tenant who has always paid on time? Is their situation long-term, such as a recent job loss? Have they incurred a new expense that makes their personal budget too tight? Also, what is their historical impact on the community ecology? Have their neighbors had problems with them? Are they troublesome from a noise or disturbance perspective?
Tip 3: Don’t negotiate with bad tenants or under-market tenants.
A non-payment of rent is an opportunity to improve your community’s ecology by getting rid of a bad tenant. If a non-paying tenant is occupying a unit that is now at under-market rent, this is a good opportunity to bring the unit to market and find a new tenant with a good rental payment history. Also, for a rent controlled building, this is an opportunity to get rid of a bad tenant with little fuss.
Have a question for Kari? Please submit it to her via commenting on the : Ask Kari YouTube Channel
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