HELP! Out of control tenant

We have a park we are turning around. That seems to be the story everywhere. We have a tenant who when we bought the park was $2000. Behind in rent. We got them paying but now they are not. We tried to work with them but they won’t pay. We offered to buy the trailer, they said “no way.” They told our management that they would tear the trailer apart and make a huge mess with it and drag it out as long as possible if we evict them. They own the trailer. What can we do besides clean up after them. We have a few that if we let them get away with this we fear they will do it too.

Please help us.

Thank you

Sharon

They have an overblown idea of their ability to stay. File the eviction immediately. Use an attorney so there can be no question of making a mistake on any detail. You should be in court within a couple weeks. Win, wait for the right to appeal to pass, and get the Writ of Execution. You should be able to get them removed within 30 days or less. In the interim, if they start tearing the home apart, call the city code enforcement officer and have him write them a ticket (as there are probably laws in your area regarding demolition without a permit, or causing a harm to community safety, etc.) That will get them a fine just like a traffic ticket, and will put them in jail like a traffic ticket if they don’t pay. You can call and get them a new ticket every day if they don’t obey the law. If they give you any push back or threaten you, call the police. Better yet, hire an off-duty cop for $35 an hour or so to turn it around and scare them and put them on the defensive.

No tenant in your park has any power over you at all. You hold all the cards. You can throw any of them out on the street that you want, who do not pay rent or behave. Don’t let them assume they have any power at all – put them in their place strongly and as an example to the other tenants, If you crush them, no other tenant will ever mess with you again. And it sounds like they definitely deserve an attitude adjustment.

My bet is that, once you file the eviction and they get served, they will run off and abandon the home, and you’ll take it through abandoned property law. May tenants talk a big game, but have absolutely nothing to back up their tall tales. I call this “bar talk” – meaningless chatter that idiot drunks do to impress each other, but of no truth whatsoever.

You’re going to win in the end, no matter what. Period.

Sharon -

You make your own problems in this business, and just by having that sort of a discussion with such a recalcitrant tenant, you are creating problems for yourself, and I’m sure you are finding your conversations are already getting personal and nasty.

You simply, absolutely, positively, must enforce no-pay, no-stay. These tenants of yours are really bad actors threatening you that way. Get an attorney to advise you this first time. After that, you’ll know how to handle an eviction legally and to your State/County protocol.

You’ll probably need to mail them (certified mail) a demand letter for rent. They’ll probably refuse it at the Post Office, but not to worry, you just need to follow the rules so you can tell the judge when you go to court in a few weeks. Evict this tenant ASAP.

There is a 50/50 chance they’ll actually come up with the rent when you make them respect the law. You can then choose to keep them (or may have to depending on your local law), but if they don’t pay, then they will be out of your hair fast. You’ll call the Sheriff a few days after court (as the law provides), and they’ll come remove the resident. They’ll then have 30 days or so to remove their trailer. (But that that point they may sell it to you or someone else who will keep it in the park, rather than take a loss and have to move it.)

But no matter. Just don’t make any more headache for yourself. Don’t have any more conversations with a tenant like this who threatens you. Let your attorney take it from here. You won’t even have to see them in court. Your attorney will go to court and get them out for you.

Word will spread in your park FAST that you expect the law to be followed, and no one will try this stunt on you in the future. Remember, you are not doing anything illegal or unkind. These tenants have threatened you (breaking the law), and it is they who are not paying rent (again breaking the law).

Let your attorney take it from here, and get them out.

Good luck,

-jl-

Thank you both for your GREAT!! advice! and your time! This is exactly what I needed.

Us newbies are so lucky to have a place like this to come to for advice from the pros. I never imagined when starting in this business the amount of head scratcher problems I would encounter. I was a little naïve to say the least.

I will do exactly as you both say.

Great fully,

Sharon