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Got a tenant who won’t pay? Don’t try a ‘self-help’ eviction

On Behalf of | Aug 11, 2020 | Uncategorized |

Are you frustrated at your non-paying tenants? Maybe you heard about that Canadian landlord who, frustrated at a non-paying tenant, took all the windows and doors off the home and quietly applauded their creativity. After all, non-paying tenants can be a serious drain on your resources.

Landlords have tried to get creative before, however, and it generally ends in massive amounts of trouble — for the landlord. In this country, no matter how problematic a tenant has become, “self-help” evictions that bypass the court system and skip the formal procedures are illegal. You don’t have to even do anything as extreme as removing the doors and windows on a residence (which is arguably not a good way to protect your property, either).

Self-help evictions include things like:

  • Failing to pay the utilities so they will be turned off
  • Turning off the utilities on your own (whether you’re tampering with city lines or not)
  • Changing the locks on the residence when the tenant isn’t home
  • Moving all of the tenant’s belongings to the curb while they’re out
  • Threatening the tenant with violence or other harm if they don’t leave

Tenants are increasingly savvy about their rights and their ability to fight back if a landlord tries to rush an eviction along. If a tenant takes you to court over a self-help eviction and wins, you could be forced to pay them compensation worth far more than a month or two more of free rent.

If you’re struggling with non-paying tenants, find out what it takes to get the eviction process rolling — legally. It’s the best way to protect your rights.