Prior tenant left an abandoned vehicle

8 Replies

My previous tenant left an abandoned car in the back yard. It is not operable and is impossible to move without a tow truck. Any suggestions on what I can do with the car? The prior tenant told me they would remove it but never did. That was 4 months ago.

Contact a local tow company and see if they will put up one of their signs on your property. It will say something like cars will be towed in 24, 48 72 hours, or something. Tell them to come back and get the car after that time period passes.

Drag it to the street , then tell let the government take it . They will then fine the owner of record of the car and wont renew any tag or drivers license of the owner till the fines are paid

Exactly as Chuy said. Once you have the sign up the tow company will tow it to their lot and the ex-tenant would have to pay to get it out. Doesn't cost you anything. 

We had a tenant we evicted leave their car and 4-track in the driveway.  Neither one was inoperable and could easily be moved!  The eviction involved a constable visit, ie not a single thing can be left on the property.  We texted him the next day that he had 24 hours to remove the car and the 4-track or we would have them towed.  He replied with a expletive filled text that we better not touch his vehicles.  We didn't bother responding back.  We'd already said what we needed to.  Despite all his bluster, they were gone the next day.

As an aside, that 4-track was a fairly new arrival to the property.  It wasn't a brand new vehicle, but in great condition and probably only a few years old.  It magically showed up the same month when he suddenly only had $300 of the $850/month rent.  Mmmm...hmmm.

I even contacted City Hall to get a definition on if a 4-track was property we could just seize or if it was considered a vehicle.  Alas, no.  They said we could tow it, but we couldn't just keep it.  Considering he stole our refrigerator and our washer, I still regret we didn't just take it.  But we're way too law abiding, even for self help.  Sometimes I hate being so goody-two shoes, lol.

After advising the owner to move the vehicle or it will be towed, contact tow company and have it removed from your private property.

Save that text message or email to the previous tenant, especially if they acknowledge they received the message.

I would also take a precautionary measure to photograph where the vehicle is located and photograph the condition it is in prior to the tow.

I would obtain the name of the wrecker operator, tow company, date and time the vehicle was removed as well just in case the tow company does anything funny with the vehicle after it is removed and impounded in their lot.

I would probably just let the vehicle owner know what company removed it and provide tow company with vehicle owner information.

I would imagine Texas is similar to Florida where you would be able to easily make the call to get the vehicle removed from your private property, but the additional steps would help you out on the off chance they go after you civilly for having the vehicle removed, any damages as the result of the tow, or business methods the tow company may employ in an attempt to make money from the vehicle owner for the time they have the vehicle on their lot (who knows with tow companies).

I've dealt with a similar situation.  I made a few calls to different tow companies, and ultimately needed to find a company with a salvage license.  That enabled them to dispose of an abandoned, non-operational vehicle more quickly, vs. other tow companies that would have to store it for some time period in case the owner claimed it.  At least that's how I understood it.

Our situation also called for a snatch truck (due to space limitations).  Just throwing that out there in case, like me, you've never heard that phrase.  Things you learn!

The simplest answer is to call a tow company. They can tell you what your state law allows. Pay the money to have it towed and be done with it.