How much time should i allow tenant to move out?

7 Replies

Here's the link to what led up to this:

I will be meeting with them on the 13th to be asking them to leave. Preferably they would agree to move out. But i foresee some major issues coming up that i could really use some help with handling.

  • How much time do i give them to be out? Sooner the better obviously but what is reasonable?
  • They are flat broke. I know that isn't my problem, but it's the reality and if they feel that i'm putting them in a desperate situation they could lash out in any number of ways. I can offset this by offering the carrot of giving their entire deposit back once they're out and the place is left clean, but $900 is not enough by itself for them to find and rent a new place in such a short time.
  • They have said they'll be paying most of July's rent on the 12th (partly why i'm meeting on the 13th). But chances are i will not be able to collect the rest of July's rent and still have them out. 
  • Lastly, do i still proceed with the eviction if they say they will move out willingly? I can stop the process once they're out, or do i just get something in writing that they agree to be out by X date?

Thank you everyone, I could really use some advice on this one.

@Shane H. Are you running a business or what. immediately give them however many days notice necessary in your state to pay or quit. Do it properly. You can stop the process anytime. The notice will show you are serious and you can negotiate cash for keys if you want. They might surprise with all their rent. lol. If you do cash for keys don't pay until they are moved out and broom clean. It will take a few days to get on the courts calendar for the eviction. If you do accept partial rent you will have to give them another notice and start proceedings again. 

Geez...there's a lot here:

Partial Rent Payments...if you accept partial rent on the 13th when you meet with them, then the non-payment is cured and you cannot file for eviction due to non-payment. 

Terminating the Lease...State Law dictates this process and length of notice.  If they're on a month-to-month, 30 days notice must be given.  Here's a site where you can look-up the specific state law:

Tenants' Financial Reality...they cannot afford the rent.  Time will not change this.  They made need to ask for Housing Assistance from the municipality/state but you're not helping anyone by allowing this to continue.  

Eviction... I would file it today unless I was 100% certain the next option would not work.  It's the 10th, the rent is unpaid. Do not accept rent on the 12th.  Move forward this way to ensure they do move out.  

Cash for Keys...the other option here is to offer them cash to move out sooner versus later.  If they move out before month-end, pay them to go (your security deposit idea) with payment made upon exit.  But do not collect partial rent; again, while you deserve to be paid, you will only be extending this situation.

If it were me, I would get the phone number and name for someone at the Housing Assistance Office and provide it to them on the 13th along with two options:  leave in 10 days and I'll pay you to do that - or eviction will be filed tomorrow.  

I hope this helps.  May the force be with you.  

@Shane H. ,

Rule #1:  There is a payment agreement that is the governing document:  it's the lease.

Rule #2:  The governing document directs the parties on how to act, their responsibilities and time-frames.

Rule #3:  A personal-touch, face to face is nice, but shall not supersede or circumvent the governing document.

Rule #4:  Any questions?  Refer to Rules #1 and 2.

The time and effort to codify procedures should be completed before the lease is presented to the tenant to sign. It's not to be worried about when things go sideways.   Preparation is key; break the above rules at your own financial peril.  

@Patricia Steiner If they only pay partial rent on the 12th, am I not able to then provide a 3 day pay or quit in response to the remaining rent owed?

I also should've also clarified that these tenants are my neighbors in the duplex i'm house hacking. This is the main reason why we're meeting in person, why i'm stressing about how the interaction will go, worried about retaliation, etc.

The pay or quit is just the most straight forward means of enforcing them to leave but ultimately it has been a series of events that have led up to this decision. (they move people in without asking, rent is habitually late, tons of attitude when i ask for things like vaccination records or application from who they moved in, forgery of vaccination records, police commonly being called from/on them, etc...)

This ordeal is a great example of why a property management company can be more value than cost. Is all this stress really worth saving 8-10% a month? 

@Shane H.

In most jurisdictions, if you accept a partial payment AFTER the due date, you waive your right to pursue other collection remedies for the balance.  You certainly will be forfeiting the start of the eviction process.  If you read legal sites tailored to tenants who are behind on the rent, they all advise to "pay partial rent"  - as a strategy to avoid eviction and other legal remedies.  Partial payments made on or before due have language that can be added to those to ensure no legal remedy is lost.  But AFTER the due date, a partial payment will put you on hold until they miss the next rent payment. 

Not fair. Just is...

@Patricia Steiner Thank you Patricia! I did read through all of our landlord/tenant laws and I don't remember seeing that but it has been at least a year since i read through it. I'll go through and make sure to find out the answer to that one way or another today. I'm really glad you chimed in, thank you!