How Do I Control That Bad Tenant?

bad tenant

Many landlords think that their struggles end once they find a tenant, and for most, they may be right. However, there will always be that one bad tenant that always causes trouble for the landlord. They may like to destroy the property, pay their rent late if at all, law breakers or frequent complainers. Here are the ways to properly deal with these bad tenants.

1. Screen them beforehand

bad tenant

The easiest way to distance bad tenants from your property is by screening them beforehand. You can check up on their criminal background if it exists, their education, current paycheck, past performance in rented properties and other backgrounds. This will give you a more complete picture on who this tenant is and if they can pay their rent on time. The bad tenants that pay late and trash the furniture can easily be filtered out this way. However, this method only works if the tenancy agreement has not been signed yet. For the unlucky landlords that couldn’t filter out the bad tenants in time, proceed to the next steps.

2. Make a well-written lease

bad tenant

A well-written lease gives you a much needed edge over the bad tenant. For example, if the tenant says that you are responsible for furnishing the property, you can refer to the lease to find out the legitimacy of the claim. In case they don’t pay their rent, you can refer to the lease if  a specified action was already written, such as a penalty or an allowed grace period. Dealing with bad tenants with outrageous claims may sway your mind into a grey area, but the lease can help in making things black and white.

3. Conduct frequent inspections

bad tenant

Conducting inspections can help in finding bad tenants. These tenants my be using your property for unsavory reason without your consent. They will never tell you out right, so a surprise inspection may help uncover these problems. Frequent inspections can also help in confirming the state of the property. The bad tenant may have caused harm to the property and hid it. If found after the tenancy period, it may be hard to get their cooperation. If found during the tenancy period, they can be held responsible.

4. Treat everyone the same

Sometimes, the landlord may want to bend the rules to help the tenants. However, you need to keep in mind that this will give the bad tenants leverage over you. After all, if you can help one, they would also want that help. For example, one tenant may have had a bad time with suicidal thoughts and you may want to delay their rental payment. A normal bad tenant may see this and want the same treatment.

5. Communication

bad tenant

Communication is one of the best tools to handle every problem. For bad tenants, it may be important to find out if they are actually bad, or they are in hard times. For example, Covid-19 has caused many people to lose their paycheck unexpectedly and can’t pay their rent, and it’s not in good taste to blame them for it. However, a tenant that frequently makes problem at their work place and gets fired for it may also not be able to pay their rent. Communication is important to determine which one is a bad tenant and doesn’t deserve your leniency.

6. Evict them

bad tenant

As a nuclear option, you can threaten eviction or out right evict the bad tenant. This comes with many complications and possible legal problems. Nevertheless, there are bad tenants that are uncooperative and the above methods don’t work. For these, evictions may be the only solution. And if they don’t want to leave, restrict their access to the lift, electricity and water.

bad tenant

7. Hire a Property Agent

Finally, you can hire a property agent to handle all the above problems. For a slight fee, they can utilize their vast knowledge to find good tenants and avoid bad tenants.  They can screen intensely and write a proper lease. With an agent, you can lose a lot of the stress as the agent will help in solving them.


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