Re: Tenant up and gone, any recourse? - Posted by Bill
Posted by Bill on March 09, 2000 at 19:46:16:
You definitely have the right to keep the security deposit and use it to fix up the dirty mess. As long as there’s no big damage,first order of business is to clean and paint and get it rented again.
Going after the guy might be an exercise in futility. Even if you get a judgement in your favor,the guy probably has no money. This is a situation where it’s strictly business and what is your cheapest alternative? He’s gone…THAT’s GOOD!!! You could hire a skip tracer to go after him,but I suspect you’d never get the money you put into it.
One lesson to be learned…ALWAYS stick to the eviction process of your state. For example,in Illinois,you can serve notice 5 days after past due rent. Always start the procedure immediately. If you give the tenant slack by letting him be late,even once,the horror story of it is if you get to court,there’s a chance the judge would find in favor of the tenant sinc you’ve historically given “verbal chage and ok” to the lease agreement. File immediately and keep copies of all letters.
I also found you can legally have your lawyer file the eviction notice. If the tenant corrects,you then have the right to demand not only rent due but the cost of filing the eviction by your attorney. That’s $300 easy you can take from/hold from security. Talk with your attorney for sure and discuss future handling procedures. The lawyer and your discussion will be an education and preparation for the future.