There is nothing better than a tenant who pays rent on time and takes care of your home. But then, sometimes, you move that person in (or who you expect to be that person), and someone moves in with them. So, how do you get that guest who is not on the lease out of your house?
In this article, we will discuss how to evict someone that does not belong in your home.
Consider this story if you’re wondering what the harm of a guest that isn’t on your lease can cause your rental property.
One day you receive a call from an angry neighbor saying that you have moved a “convicted sex offender” into the house next door.
This call will immediately make your heart sink. After listening to the homeowner’s valid concerns, you promise to look into it further and follow up. Once off the phone, you race to your filing cabinet on an online resource where you keep the applications and find the application for the new move-in. According to the application, at least, the tenant was NOT a sex offender.
This confusion will cause you to do some further investigative work. The neighbor mentioned that it was a male who was the sex offender, and the only occupant, according to your records, was a female. Your next move is to pick up the phone and call your tenant to find out what is happening.
The tenant answers the phone, thankfully. You quiz her about what you just heard. She denies knowing what you are talking about.
However, after speaking with her, she finally relents and admits that it is her boyfriend and they couldn’t find a place because no one would take him. She then attempts to explain the story of “how it happened” when you stop her.
The bottom line is that she had lied on the application, which was grounds for eviction, meaning there is no way for her to make it right and stay unless you allow it, which you shouldn’t.
Getting an unwanted person who is not on the lease out of your property can be a little tricky.
Let’s look at a few things you should consider before diving into how to get them out.
Before you can even think about starting the process of forcing someone out, you need to make sure you brush up on your state’s eviction laws. Depending on where you are located, they can vary drastically, so be sure you are state-specific in your research.
Having a good background of these eviction laws will also come in handy when drafting your lease agreements. You can make sure that you incorporate an aspect about guests, not on the lease and the process to get them out.
Most leases have a provision that states that guests who stay longer than a certain period will be required to be added to the lease. Typically this period ranges from 7 to 14 days.
Then, you’ll need to prove they are staying in the house, which can be more challenging than expected. For example, if they are receiving mail there, they live there, but you can’t check their mail without committing a crime.
Here are a few ways you can prove that this unwanted guest is staying in your home:
Once you’ve established that they are staying there, you need to determine if they are a problem. In most circumstances, this becomes a business decision. You will need to decide if you are willing to go through the trouble to have them out and risk losing an otherwise good tenant.
For the rest of this article, we will assume that you decided to prove they are living there and are in violation of your lease by living there.
The first step is to put them on notice that they violate the lease by posting a seven-day notice on the door for a “material non-compliance” breach of the lease.
Guessing that all things are equal, the tenant will make a phone call and swear their Aunt Mable is only in town for a short time, and this is where you should share with them the evidence of her being there for much longer than that.
It has been our experience that most tenants will acknowledge, at least internally, that they need to get Auntie out and will do it and prove to you it is done. Proving can get a little tricky. Also, proving they haven’t moved for you will get tough. But, let’s pretend you can do it.
After the seven-day notice expires, you will have to evict the Tenant. That’s right; you will be forced to evict your tenant for non-compliance with the lease. There is no way to get a guest of your tenant out of the house for trespassing. Unless, of course, the tenant agrees the person is trespassing. If you need help with the eviction process, you may want to look into legal assistance.
So, now you know how to evict someone not on your lease—getting someone out of your rental home who doesn’t belong in such a sticky and challenging situation. You will need to ensure you have plenty of evidence, especially if the tenant is willing to take the matter to a judge.
If you are willing to spend the time and effort, evicting a guest that doesn’t belong in your home can be a boost for the neighborhood and potentially your bottom line.
Spencer is the VP of Marketing at Evernest. He wakes up with Google and Facebook on his mind. Having bought and sold over 150 homes in Birmingham, Spencer gets a kick out of helping new and seasoned investors navigate the mistakes he made as an investor. Spencer is also passionate about his love for Michael Jordan and does his best to explain to the Millennials (who never saw him play live) how much better he was than LeBron. He loves to hang out with his wife, kids, and the world’s best black lab, Jett.