California landlord here. Had a tenant who stopped paying, and moved forward with an unlawful detainer. They used some delaying tactics but eventually the judge ruled against them and we were awarded possession.
While waiting for the filed writ of possession to be mailed to us, the tenants have moved out and left the place nearly empty and the doors unlocked.
Do we need to proceed with a sheriff lockout (and wait the ~3 weeks for it to occur), or does their abandonment allow us to change the locks and begin rehab?
Have You Been Able To Contact The Tenant? When Did You Find Out It Was Unlocked/Unoccupied? Once The Tenant Breached Their Lease And You Were Awarded Possesion Of The Unit That Unit Is Your Responsibility To Secure. Once You Speak To The Tenant You Can Contact The Sheriff Office And Cancel The Appointment For Them to Come.
Their neighbor contacted us on Saturday indicating that they had moved out and expressing concern that a homeless person might move in (they had a similar problem with the laundry room in the past). The tenant has not responded to our calls so we have not spoken to them.
I would absolutely document that they have vacated and take pics. I would go secure your property asap. If a homeless person moves in then you have even more problems.
Go change the locks so it doesn't get squatted in. Go ahead and begin rehab if needed.
But absolutely continue with the Sheriff eviction. Once they do their "walk-thru" it's now in your possession. That last step has to occur.
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