When a tenant violates the lease or rental agreement, keep in mind that terminating a tenancy must be pursuant to landlord and tenant law, which varies from state to state. Under Texas eviction laws, a property owner may evict a tenant for violations of the agreement. This could include non-adherence to a no-pets policy, unlawful stay, purposefully damaging or destroying a portion of the rental property, not moving out after termination, and other circumstances covered by state law.
Tenant eviction is not as easy as it seems. According to the legal process, before a landlord can evict a tenant, a notice of eviction must be served. If a renter is violating or has violated the rental or lease agreement and you cannot fix the problem, take note of the following do’s and don ts:
1) Do take into account specific landlord-tenant law when preparing a notice to vacate.
Do remember that the written notice must include the full name of the tenant and the rental unit’s address. The notice in writing must likewise include the reason why the renter is being evicted, and how and when the notice was served.
2) Do not forget to indicate that legal action will be taken after a certain period.
State that legal aid will be sought if the tenant does not vacate the unit within the number of days stated in the agreement, or the default period of three days.
3) Do make sure that the notice is served following relevant landlord-tenant laws.
The notice must be served in the following ways:
- personally handed over by the landlord (or his or her agent) to either the tenant or someone above 16 years old who resides in the unit
- left inside the door of the unit, for landlords who can legally enter the personal property being rented out
- mailed to the renters through regular, certified, or registered mail
- securely posted outside the front door (if there is no mailbox or the notice cannot be posted inside the door), the front gate, or a visible portion in the main entrance, if the above is not possible
4) Do not serve a notice of eviction with missing information.
An eviction notice will not be valid if crucial information, such as details of violations, non-payment of rent, or landlord-tenant disputes are left out. As part of the legal eviction process, in such a case, the three-day period will not take effect until a new notice in writing is served.
5) Do keep in mind tenant rights.
If a tenant refuses to move out, get professional legal help to make sure that the eviction case you bring to court follows the legal eviction process. Do get legal advice from a lawyer specializing in filing a forcible detainer suit or a suit to evict.
6) Do not resort to unlawful self-help ways to evict tenants.
Make sure to comply with laws on how to evict tenants lawfully if you want to avoid penalties that come with an illegal eviction case. Do not resort to changing locks, cutting access to utilities, bringing out belongings, and other means of illegally evicting tenants.
Eviction notices must be prepared for renters who have not paid rent or have violated the lease or rental agreement. For clarifications on eviction proceedings and paperwork, or legal assistance on court papers, give us a call. Contact us at Girling Law, PLLC for eviction cases and concerns.