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When to start the eviction process

On Behalf of | Mar 18, 2024 | Eviction |

Most Tennessee landlords prefer not to have to evict a tenant. The eviction process can be expensive, time-consuming and stressful for everyone involved. While landlords and tenants can resolve many disputes in other ways, eviction is the only option when they can’t work out certain issues and the tenant is not following the terms of their lease. If you have a troublesome tenant and you believe eviction is the best option, it’s helpful to understand how and when you can start the eviction process.

Eviction for non-payment

One of the most common reasons for eviction is non-payment of rent. If your tenant has not paid rent within 5 days after the due date, it’s considered late. At this point, you can issue a 14-day notice to quit that requires your tenant to pay overdue rent and any late fees or other agreed-upon penalties. If the tenant does not pay the rent within those 14 days, he or she then has 16 days to move out of your property.

If your tenant has not moved out 30 days from the day you first issued the notice to quit, you can request a detainer warrant in court. Once issued, the local sheriff will deliver the warrant to your tenant, which provides them with a court date and location to appear. If your tenant is a no-show or the judge rules in your favor, the tenant has 10 days to leave your property. If they fail to do so, you can request the sheriff to physically remove them and their property.

Other reasons for eviction

Non-payment isn’t the only reason for evicting a tenant. If your tenant is not maintaining the property and there is damage beyond normal wear and tear, you can start the eviction process. If a tenant is engaged in illegal activities, especially those that create a dangerous environment for others, that is also grounds for eviction.

Violations to your rental agreement allow you to evict a tenant. This may include having pets on a property where the tenant agreed to a no-pet policy. If your lease ends and your tenant doesn’t move out on the date listed on your rental agreement, you may have to go through the eviction process to remove them.

Legal advice for landlords

Owning rental properties comes with many challenges. While you may have some wonderful tenants who always pay on time and who take good care of your property, you should be knowledgeable of the eviction process in Tennessee in case you ever need to remove a tenant. If you find yourself in a situation where your tenant is not following your lease, seek the advice of a professional who understands the eviction process.