Tenant moving out without noticing the landlord in advance?

7 Replies

Hi BP,

I am curious if any landlord experienced tenants who moved out unexpectedly but still have some additional charges (i.e. late charges, fixture charges, and etc) on to their file or account. What did you do? Do you disregard the charges and just let the tenant leave to never see them again? What about the accumulated charges towards fixing certain parts of the apt. And what If the tenants were on a  month to month basis  verbally? No lease, no physical contract?

Thank you. :)

I've had 'skippers' before and was glad they left.  Always with money owing, damages, problems, etc.  They can be hard to track down to recoup.  Hard to not let them leave when already gone.  Oh- out of the rental agreement?    I just moved on.

I documented things and took photos/videos.  I also realized they are gone, have no money, have no character, usually have a substance problem and are not worth a lot of anger or fretting.  Get your unit ready for newer and better @Meng W. and keep plugging along!

It happens randomly here and there..like @Steve Vaughan said, most of the time you're glad their gone. Keep security deposit, do what you can with it and make the place rentable as soon as possible and put it behind you.

Unfortunately,  skips happen to the best of us. Unless there was an abnormal amount of damage or big ticket items had to be replaced, you're better off moving onto the next tenant. Although,  it wouldn't hurt to look around for a good collection agency just in case.

Oh, make sure you also understand all the regulations in your state regarding security deposit forfeiture.  You may be obligated to at least attempt to notify them within a certain time frame, certified letter, etc. Most skips will never contest a claim on their deposit, but it is possible. 

Good luck in the next round! Keep your chin up! 

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I deduct what I can from their Security Deposit.  If there is still a lot of money owed to me I will go to court to get a Judgment.  This way I have record of a court order that they owe me money.  You can then put a lien on their property, cars, etc., which will force them to pay you. Or you can take them to Small Claim Court and sue them yourself after you receive a Judgment and they don't pay. 

If you don't know their whereabouts turn them over to a collection agency. Find a good Collection Agency and they will hunt down your tenant like a Bounty Hunter.  My collection agency found my tenant after 11 years went by and I collected every dime.  Had to pay the Collection Agency half, but hey, half is better than zero.

Also you can  charge off the uncollectible funds at the end of the year if you don't collect from them via a Judgment or Collection Agency.  So you do have some options.

Nancy Neville

@Nancy Neville

 thanks guys for the info. It is depressing to know that tenants will do that to landlords. I don't understand why  majority of time the court is in favor of the tenant rather than landlords. Landlord has it the worst if tenants started showing different faces throughout the years.

@Meng W. I would celebrate even more because they are probably not as far behind in rent as could be.  I would declare the tenancy and left over personal belongings abandoned according to your state law and get it re-rented to a better tenant!

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