removing tenant for breach of lease, baltimore city

27 Replies

Im going to kick a tenant out for inability to pay on time, ever. my lease provides 10 days to pay or I can terminate lease for breach of lease. if never attempting a breach of lease eviction is Baltimore city, has anybody else? if so, what is the process?..ive been told 30 day to vacate letter then breach of lease filing. true? any details/guidance in this would be appreciated.

You need to find an attorney who specializes in this work. This isn't a DIY task, at least the first time.

I agree with Jon, but also wanted to add that I'm finding out Maryland is extremely tenant-friendly, here in Annapolis but also in Baltimore, where my uncle owns rentals. We had a nice discussion recently on tenant rights and even that they are trying to pass rent control legislation (failed this time but looks like they are trying to bring it up again.).

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you said that they never pay ontime but do they pay and do you collect a late feem, can you increase their security deposit, create autodraft etc.? Also, evictions take $ and time.

Sometimes the grass isn't greener....just food for thought.

PM @Nicole W. - she may be able to give you advice in this area after just going through a LENGTHY evicition process in Baltimore County (my understanding is the city process would be 2x to 3x worse).

I evict often, im looking to evict for a breach if lease which ive never done. If anyone has experience evixting someone because they have a dog on premises, changed the front door locks, etc. In baltimore city..... Aka NOT failure to pay rent, thats what im looking for.

Well, it is much more difficult to evict for breach of lease than for nonpayment. Just because you send them a letter saying that you are ending the lease does not mean they'll actually move out for you. Then, when they don't, you get to go to court to try to get them out for breach of lease.... and when you say what they are breaching, you'll say "late/nonpayment of rent". Then the judge will ask you why you aren't filing for rent court.

What you need to do is file for rent court the very day the rent is late. Include all your late fees and court costs. As i'm sure you know, after 4 rent courts within a year, you can file for "no right of redemption", which means you can evict that final time even if they do pay you.

Breach of lease is an even more difficult road for you to take, especially if you're saying that the reason is for late/nonpayment. Just file rent court.

yeah, I file in rent court always. and am well versed with the processes and procedures. however, my lease allows me to terminate a lease for 10 days late at any point. I do not want to wait to get to the 5th judgment., particularly if i am forced to file every single month then don;t get a judgement because they pay it the day before court. the lease states they will pay in a timely manner or they are breaching he terms of their lease. Once or twice I imagine a judge will tell me to go to hell. This is every month for going on 9 months. what are the exact procedures for terminating a lease for breach in Baltimore city? 30 day letter and breach filing if they don't leave, or am I missing something? this idiot also changed the locks and refused to give me a key, another breach which strengthens my case.

So they typically pay their late rent--the late fees--AND the court fees the day before court? I'm know you've said you're well versed, but I still am going to ask these questions to help you be sure you are missing no details.

Because if they pay you rent and say late fees the day before court, they still owe you the court fees...so you still go to court and you just say they paid X amount due of the filing.

But if they are indeed paying every dime owed each month, then yes, you must first send a 30 day notice that the tenant has violated the lease and that you wish to repossess the premises. If by that date they are not gone, THEN you can go file for the Breach of Lease.

This link (and website) are very helpful for procedures:

http://www.peoples-law.org/node/275

Now what is substantial enough evidence to the judge? Who knows. How will you prove to the judge that he changed the locks? Have a video showing you trying your key?

Just because you have something in your lease stating that you can terminate a lease for a 10-day late payment does not mean it is legal. You need to edit your lease to reflect Baltimore City laws.

I promise I and my staff are well known frequent guests on Fayette street. rent court has zero to do with what I am asking about. I want to terminate a lease for being in breach. repeatedly, every month. thank you for a link to the process and my lease adheres to Baltimore city laws, but thanks for the concern.

It kinda does have something to do with rent court, so don't take it as an insult when I asked if the tenant was indeed paying you all fees/court costs involved. We are all here to help you, not to be condicending or anything like that. You keep saying that you're well versed/known in rent court...I got it. Not sure that is something either of us should exactly be proud of.

Anyway, let us know how that works out for you. Good luck.

not trying to be but are. Rent court has nothing to do with what i am attempting to find out, trust that i know what i am talking about, because i do. My tenant ia violating thr lease by making me file a rent notice on them every single month because they dont pay by the 10th. which is unacceptable. However the jufge rules they will rule. If they pay everything they owe every month or they don't after the fact has nothing to do with the violation in the terms of the lease that was entered. I just wanted to know how a breach of lease filing in baltimore city is handled/carried out. I promise im capable of taking it from there and/or deciding if its a worthwhile pursuit.

I agree with Nicole W. she sums up the process pretty well. Seth do not accept the payment from the tenant once you file your no payment of rent and get your hearing date. Go in front of the Judge and then accept payment that way it goes towards the 4 rent court hearings. If you accept the payment before the hearing you have voided that hearing and now you have to start the process over again.

But on the same note I found myself down Fayette st. and the Municipal Building. My tenant wasn't paying the water bill and cause a lien to be placed on my property. Fortunate for me that my Mortgage Lender paid the lien out of my escrow account but I still had to put an additional 18% in my escrow with the original lien and had to pay the current water bill which was a few hundred more dollars. I wanted to file for an eviction because it was a breach of the lease and i was furious. Long story short, the tenant is supposed to pay me all of my money this week or I have to file in small claims court to get my money, i can't file for non payment cause he pays his rent, he's just a slow payer. So , Seth, I too would like to file for breach of lease but you"ll find yourself spending a lot of time and money to get it done.

If you make any headway, please post, would also like to know your outcome

I would be careful on that. I am fairly certain that if you refuse to accept rent when it was offered to you, that will not be looked upon favorably in court.

You must accept rent when it is paid. This is why I was merely asking the poster if he was definitely getting every dime of his money paid to him prior to rent court. I have seen people get their rent and late fee and decide not to go to court....but they lost out on their court fees due to them (and that court judgement).

Also, if they pay you at the hearing, they will not get a judgment, so it doesn't matter anyway. The thing that matters is that you get your money (and the late fee for your trouble). The door locking thing is another matter.

A recent Baltimore REIA meeting was on the topic of rent court, and one of the things covered was Breach of Lease. There is a separate form for this process, and different procedures. The lawyer presenting the information basically said breach can be hard to prove. Here is copy of form:

http://www.courts.state.md.us/district/forms/civil/dccv085np.pdf

The Baltimore REIA will hold a Landlord Meeting on Monday, May 19. ($25 and includes dinner) Please check their website for details.

There is a lot of good information in this thread. I've picked up a few more bits of info. Now I have to find that saga from @Nicole W. for the county.

If you decide that the breach of lease process is not worth it, and if the lease is only a year long, then at least you're already 9 months through it. Not too much longer 'till you can rid of them anyway.

Originally posted by @WAYNE G. :
A recent Baltimore REIA meeting was on the topic of rent court, and one of the things covered was Breach of Lease. There is a separate form for this process, and different procedures. The lawyer presenting the information basically said breach can be hard to prove. Here is copy of form:

http://www.courts.state.md.us/district/forms/civil/dccv085np.pdf

The Baltimore REIA will hold a Landlord Meeting on Monday, May 19. ($25 and includes dinner) Please check their website for details.

There is a lot of good information in this thread. I've picked up a few more bits of info. Now I have to find that saga from @Nicole W. for the county.

Would this be the chapter in Owings Mills

This is one of the main reasons I do month to month leases!! This is a technicality play... If you're on a month to month you can simply send the lease termination notice (It's 60 days in Baltimore City) and if they're not out by then you can proceed with a "Tenant holdover" complaint which will be much easier for you to get a judgement for.

If you're a few month into a year lease then I doubt you'll have much luck getting a judge to agree that them paying late every month is a breach of lease. My understanding of "breach of lease" is there has to be something substantial such as them breaking laws, damaging properties, or unauthorized pets/guests. Since they already have a court process that addresses late payments and allows you to evict habitual late payers I doubt a judge is going to go with your "I can end the lease if you're 10 days late" clause and will tell you to deal with it in rent court.

@Steve Morris The Owings Mills group is the MAREIA (Maryland Real Estate Investors Assn.) The Landlord Meeting I mentioned is sponsored by the Baltimore Real Estate Investors Assn. Both are good groups.

http://www.baltimorereia.com/

i file a rent notice on these cretans every month and don't get paid until judgement day. And she changed the locks and refuses to give me a key. 2 violations of the lease and grounds to have e lease terminated.

Seth, Breach of lease would be handled in District court. It is the same building as rent court. You would just fill out a different form.

Changing the locks, presuming it is in your lease is a clear breach.What if there was a fire or you needed to enter for an emergency repair. I think that is a win-able argument.

On the other hand You are not going to get a judge to agree with you that non payment of rent is a breach. They will simply refer you to rent court. That is exaclty why you can refuse late payment after 4 rent court cases in a year.

You wrote:

Once or twice I imagine a judge will tell me to go to hell. This is every month for going on 9 months.

If that is the case why didn't you file for no right of redemption as @Nicole W. suggested? If you want a great tenant landlord attorney contact Jeffrey Tapper in Owings Mills. He does collections too.

i dont file for nrr because they pay before i can get the judgement, hence i get no judgement. Id be willing to bet that the judge in a breach case wouldnt refer me to rent court given the consistency of the violation. Its not about unpaid rent but about paying me ridiculously late every single month, to the point im forced to file a rent notice for non payment. Throw that with the lock change and im betting i win. Regardless, something is going to change as a result, and the tenants see i don't f$&$ Around

noticed a few weeks ago, why

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