non rental payment and how to recoup it

3 Replies

@Billy White

Depends on your state law.  In general you can sue for damages and for not paying rent.  The security deposit comes into play if they skip on the last month of rent.  Usually you can keep it.  Get estimates on the damage and you file in small claims court for under 10k in my state.

Your specific process will depend on your city/state. In California, at the very least a landlord would deduct any past due amount from the security deposit. If the past due rent and damages to the rental exceeded the security deposit, a bill for the difference would be sent to the tenant. If the bill is not paid, the landlord may elect to sue in small claims court for a judgement. Collecting on the judgement may be difficult, but sometimes possible.

What are your specific circumstances, Billy? Was the lease month-to-month? Are damages significant? Are you able to communicate with the tenant at all?

Hopefully you have a hefty deposit and hopefully they don't owe too much back rent. 

I use a service provided by resident research where I can report money owed to the credit agencies without going through the court process.

You'll likely never get any money back and any effort or money you spend trying to go after the tenant will be wasted.