Grounds for eviction ?

3 Replies

New Jersey- So I received a summons in the mail stating that I had to go to court. So the summons was charging me for 4 different charges pertaining to repairs in the rental apartment.. I never knew if these issues and were just finding out about it the day I received the summons. I texted, emailed and sent certified letter through the mail to the tenant stating I needed access and when was a good time to check out what repairs needed to be made. Never got a response back from them. I go to the court and explain this to the prosecutor and they have me a another court date. My question is what can I do if they refuse to answer and how can I get them out ?

If they haven't been paying, evict them for nonpayment. If they have been paying, read over your lease and see if they've broken the lease in any way.

Originally posted by @Anthony Liguori :

New Jersey- So I received a summons in the mail stating that I had to go to court. So the summons was charging me for 4 different charges pertaining to repairs in the rental apartment.. I never knew if these issues and were just finding out about it the day I received the summons. I texted, emailed and sent certified letter through the mail to the tenant stating I needed access and when was a good time to check out what repairs needed to be made.

Wrong approach. No doubt these are professional tenants, making claims to ensure you can't evict (some states don't allow for 6 months after a violation is issued)
and they probably don't plan on paying any more rent, either.

But to get the repairs done, give them 24 hour written notice. If they won't answer the door, tape it on the door and take a picture to prove time of delivery. Then just enter with your key and fix it. Document the repairs (which, at this point, you don't even know what has to be fixed, if you haven't been in). If they are there when you go to enter and won't allow entry, stay out, document it (video, if possible) and immediately file for eviction, for cause - they can't legally refuse entry for the repairs (but you can't force your way in, either).

I had one tenant like this - no rent paid after move-in, they intentionally thru trash (and kids diapers) on their porch, rather than removing per the lease, piled clothes literally 2' high on the floors and then called codes enforcement due to the trash and lack of heat (it worked, it just couldn't get thru the piles over the vents). Then they tried to complain I entered illegally when I entered for the repairs (document, document, document). Finally go them out, lots of costs to get rid of their trash (had to clean and haul off from that porch and yard three times, for example, before they were gone), but almost no actual repairs and it was all their junk causing the "issues". Had I not taken a referral from existing tenant, I would not have rented to them - so, never again without meeting my now strict criteria for applicants.

That sounds like a professional tenant. I'd find an eviction lawyer immediately to advise on next steps. 

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