A Houston Landlord's Guide to Evictions

A Houston Landlord's Guide to Evictions

In the past year alone, there have been over 84,000 eviction filings in Houston.

Being a landlord is never easy, but none of your landlord responsibilities are as tough as having to send tenants a notice to vacate. You never want to remove someone from a rental, but when your property is being put at risk, there's no other option.

Today, we'll make the eviction process as simple as possible with a short guide to evictions. Keep reading and you'll be able to efficiently rid yourself of a delinquent tenant to make way for a better one.

Texas Eviction Laws

To carry out an eviction successfully, you must follow due process. Texas eviction laws tell you exactly what you need to do to evict a poor tenant, and it all starts with a reason.

Various scenarios allow you to evict a tenant, with the most common being nonpayment of rent, property damage, other rental agreement violations, and unlawful use of property. If your tenant's behavior falls under any of those categories, you can send them the corresponding eviction notice.

For nonpayment of rent and lease violations, you can send a 3-day notice to "pay/cure or quit". This gives them another 3 days to rectify the situation before you file the official eviction notice. Anything involving illegal activity or violence can be served with a 3-day notice to vacate that insists the tenant leaves the property.

Sending a Notice to Vacate

In certain situations, it's a good idea to try and reason with a tenant before declaring your intention to evict them. For nonpayment of rent, you can try to communicate with the tenant and understand why they're unable to pay rent. You may be able to work out a better resolution than eviction.

That said, if your tenant doesn't respond to your good will, you have to follow through with the eviction. After issuing the official notice, you wait the specified time. If there are no changes and the tenant hasn't vacated the property, you can go file the eviction in court.

Court Prep for Texas Landlords

When you fill out eviction papers, both you and the tenant will be given a court hearing date. There, you'll state your case in front of the eviction court to prove that the tenant should be evicted. The tenant will have a chance to defend themselves if they so choose.

It's important to bring as much supporting evidence to bolster your claims, such as correspondence, photographs, and bank statements. If your case is successful, the tenant will be given a date to mandatorily vacate the property. Failing to do so will result in forcible removal by local authorities.

How Property Management Helps With Evictions

Even when it goes smoothly, an eviction can be a draining process. If you want to avoid it altogether, it starts with proper tenant screening measures. Before you put work into finding a new tenant, however, you need to get rid of the old one.

If you're feeling overwhelmed by the eviction process, property management can help. At PMI Infinito, we're Houston's top property manager, offering tenant screening services and eviction protection. Contact us today to learn how our services can help you.