Whether it is due to property damage, complaints from neighbors about noise or failure to pay rent, bad tenants are every landlord’s worst nightmare. Unfortunately for many, getting rid of them can be difficult and time consuming. More and more areas are taking a tenant’s rights stance, and it is important for landlords to understand the proper procedures for evicting troublesome renters.
The first option for landlords to get rid of tenants is the eviction notice. Landlords must notify the tenant of corrections that need to be made. If these corrections are not made, landlords can then file for an eviction with the Landlord and Tenant Board. In many cities, this traditionally takes the form of a fourteen-day notification that the tenant is to evacuate the premise if they do not meet certain standards. In British Columbia, once tenants are given an eviction notice, they have 5 days to pay rent and/or utilities or dispute the claim, or 10 days to move out.
The Residential Tenancy Act is a great resource to learn more about what things are grounds for eviction.
Going Before the Board
If the tenant does not evacuate, the next step after the eviction notice is to serve papers and get a hearing before the Board. In this process, the Board will listen to each party and make a decision. If the eviction is allowed, a Sheriff will get involved with the eviction, if the tenant does not willingly leave.
Board proceedings are not free, however. You will have to pay filing fees and possibly lawyer fees. Some of these may be offset if you win the case, but there will still be expenses involved beyond the loss of rent from your non-optimal renters. In addition, if the problem is a first offense, you may find the judge sides with the tenants.
Eviction Service Companies
This is by far the most expensive option but can be the best in terms of convenience. These companies will take on the entire process of eviction for you. This saves you the trouble of filing paperwork and going to a hearing. You will not even have to deal with removing the tenants should they refuse to vacate. However, the service can run nearly $1,000 or more, depending on how difficult the eviction process is.
Going It Alone
If you decide to take on the process yourself, it is vital that you do your homework. Research all of your options in depth so that you are well-prepared for the events to come. By being informed, you will avoid costly mistakes which can result in your tenants remaining long after they have worn out their welcome.
Proper paperwork, from eviction notices to Board summons, is the most vital aspect of tenant removal. Make sure that all the details are in order before you file anything. For more information or answers to your case-specific questions, contact the Residential Tenancy Office.