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When is it acceptable to evict a residential tenant?

On behalf of Steven Waldinger

Nonpayment of rent is one type of violation of a lease or rental agreement that may legally allow you to initiate an eviction process.

New York property owners who rent out homes, condominiums, apartments or other residential units must understand the importance of doing their due diligence when it comes to vetting potential tenants. The long-term integrity of an owner’s investment can be at stake if a renter does not properly take care of a residence. Additionally, a property owner or landlord stands to lose valuable income if a renter suddenly decides to stop making rent payments.

The failure to pay rent as per an original lease agreement is one of the reasons for which a landlord may legally evict a person from a residence. However, there are very specific steps and timelines involved in evicting someone even for the nonpayment of rent. Failure to strictly adhere to applicable law will put an owner/ landlord at risk.

Official rent demand is the first step

Under New York law, a rent demand must be made before a landlord can take any further steps toward evicting a tenant for non-payment of rent. It is advised that owners carefully review the terms of their lease to comply with its specific requirements of providing the demand.

If the demand for rent is not met and money is still owed to the landlord. a notice of petition and petition may be served and filed, commencing an eviction against the tenant. Once again, strict procedural and legal requirements must be met.

Warrant of eviction may be ordered

A court has the power to issue a warrant of eviction, which enables a law enforcement official to physically remove the tenant, belongings and any pets from the rental property.

Landlords should always consult with an experienced attorney before proceeding with a legal action against a tenant to ensure that they fully understand the process and the steps involved.