Evicting tenants is sometimes unavoidable. Tenants who always pay rent late or violate the terms of the lease must go. But evicting tenants itself can be an expensive and grueling process. During the eviction process, you are losing rent money, and the unhappy tenant may start damaging your property.
Although you have to remove delinquent tenants from your property, there are ways to avoid evictions. Here are four.
1. Spend enough time screening tenants.
As the adage goes: prevention is better than cure. It’s easier to refuse a rental application than evict an unruly tenant. Ensure that anyone who signs a lease agreement has an excellent rental track record, good credit scores, and no criminal history.
2. Communicate with your tenants.
Good communication can help to avoid evictions and encourage tenants to pay rent on time. As soon as a tenant is late with the rent, reach out to find out why. Maybe there was a payment error, or perhaps they’ve lost their job. Early communication can help to prevent situations from escalating to the point of no return.
3. Come up with a payment plan.
If you have a long-term, trusted tenant who has fallen on hard times, you could offer a temporary payment plan. Put everything down in writing, specifying the amounts to pay, and when you must receive payment.
4. Offer a cash-for-keys deal.
You can avoid evictions by paying the tenant to leave the unit. A cash incentive may be just what the tenant needs to be on their way, and this type of deal is cheaper than filing for an eviction.