How to Evict a Renter

No landlord wants to talk about evictions, since they hope for the best with each of their renters. But if you’ve been in the business long enough, you know that situations can arise which call for decisive action. It’s not a fun part about being a landlord or property manager, but it a necessary one. You need to be prepared if the time ever comes to evict a problem renter, since there is a strict legal process which you must follow to the letter. Otherwise, evicting can become a nightmare costing you precious time and money.

The Process

If a situation with a resident becomes unsalvageable, the best course of action is often to initiate the eviction process. They’ve likely broken the rental agreement repeatedly or drastically, and your trust along with it. If the renter refuses to change their behavior or seek new residence on their own, an eviction is your only option. Here’s an overview about what that generally looks like.

  1. Violation of the lease – The renter does something like breaks terms in the rental agreement, misses rent payments, or damages the home or property.
  2. Warning the renter – You should then provide a written warning letting the renter know that their behavior is not acceptable and in violation of the lease. If they’ve done something significant enough, you may be able to go straight into an eviction depending on state laws.
  3. Notice of Eviction – If they ignore your warning, you can issue a Notice of Eviction, a legal document telling them you plan on going through an eviction because of the issue.
  4. File for eviction – The proper amount of time has passed after the Notice of Eviction, and the renter has not rectified the issue, so you can now formally file for an eviction with your local court.
  5. Go to court – At the hearing, you will provide all documentation of the problem, the steps you’ve taken thus far, and when you took them. If everything was done properly and the court agrees that an eviction is warranted, they will set an eviction date.
  6. Get the cops involved – Hopefully your problem resident will be out of the property by the eviction date, but some are especially stubborn. Don’t try to physically remove them yourself – instead, call the sheriff’s department and they will handle it.

Things Not to Do

Because the eviction process is so delicate, any wrong step you take can drag out the process and make it even more arduous. It is especially critical to understand Landlord-tenant law so that you don’t make a mistake which could cause you to have to start the eviction process over from the beginning, or even be forced to pay the renter during the process for a wrongful eviction.


  • Change the locks on the rental to try to keep the resident out
  • Enter the rental home without permission of the renter
  • Turn off water or power to force them out
  • Remove any of the renter’s property
  • Attempt to scare them off with intimidating behavior

Need help managing your rental property or properties? If you have an issue with one of your residents, you know that this can take up 10x more time than you thought. Let Norniella Management Company help you out. We take over all aspects of property management, from collecting rent, fielding maintenance requests, finding residents, and performing evictions if necessary. With us, you’ll never be caught in a bad contract or hit with surprise hidden fees; we like to keep relations clear and simple with all of our clients. To learn more about our services, call us today at 888-979-5357.  

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