If you’re an apartment renter, you’re probably familiar with the process of signing a lease outlining a set of rules that must be followed as part of an agreement to live on the landlord’s property. Chances are you’re a good tenant, but are you aware of the most common reasons for eviction?
As you might expect, a landlord will need a legitimate reason – or proper cause – to evict a tenant. While the definition of “proper cause” varies from state to state and even from lease to lease, below are some of the most common reasons for eviction.
Not paying the rent
This is by far the most common reason for eviction, and the least surprising. Usually there’s a buffer period to pay the rent, but if you’re consistently late, or if you stop paying rent altogether, it’s likely the landlord will start the process of eviction. In some cases, if you pay the money that is owed – including court fees resulting from starting the eviction process – you may be able to stop the eviction.
Violating the lease agreement
Since a lease agreement is a legal contract between you and the landlord, violating any part of the agreement is a reason for eviction. No matter how silly or insignificant a clause in the agreement might seem, you must abide by it.
Purposely damaging the property
Accidents happen all the time, including the type that cause unintentional damage to your apartment. In those cases, the tenant usually ends up with the bill. But in the event that a tenant purposely or persistently destroys any part of the property, it becomes a reason for eviction. Be aware that the damage doesn’t necessarily have to be caused directly by the tenant. If the tenant is deemed responsible for it, it’s still grounds for eviction.
Illegal activity in your apartment
If a tenant uses his apartment to conduct illegal activity, such as selling narcotics, it’s a good enough reason for eviction. In some cases, it’s necessary that specific scenarios, like illegal drug activity, be outlined in the lease agreement. And your landlord will likely have to file a police report to start the eviction process, but rest assured it will happen.
To remain in good standing as a tenant, make sure you fully understand and follow all the rules outlined in your lease agreement. This will ensure a good and long-lasting relationship with your landlord.