Evicting someone from their home is much more stressful for landlords than you might expect. The eviction process can also expose them to risks and liabilities if they do not follow the proper procedures and respect the tenant’s rights.
Before you begin the formal eviction process, take steps to protect yourself and ensure a legal and ethical procedure. The following recommendations can help.
Ensure that your reason is valid
Landlords cannot evict a tenant for any arbitrary or discriminatory reason. They must have a lawful cause for eviction, such as nonpayment of rent, lease violation or illegal activity. Since each state has specific eviction laws, learn more about those in New Jersey.
Check your documentation
Your record-keeping needs to be solid. Gather everything related to the tenancy, including rent payments, lease or rental agreements and communications (such as texts and emails). Good documentation helps validate the reason for eviction.
Have another conversation with the tenant
You may have run out of patience with your tenant, but set that aside and try at least once more to resolve the matter through discussion. Doing so could help you find a solution or compromise that neither party has considered. At least you will know that eviction is the only answer after more discussion.
Seek a legal opinion
Sometimes, you just know that getting a problem tenant out of your rental unit is going to be a nightmare. If you are already having trouble with the tenant or anticipate a fight, consider getting legal guidance. This can help the eviction go more smoothly and without undue complications.