Renting an apartment is an extremely common housing option, but there are many people that fail to understand their rights and obligations as a tenant. This can lead to them believing some common misconceptions about eviction. Considering the dire consequences that an eviction can bring, it is important for you to be aware of a couple of myths surrounding this topic.
Myth: Your Landlord Can Immediately Throw Your Out If You Are Late On Rent
Many people assume that their landlord will be able to automatically kick them out of their apartment or house if they are late on rent. While it is true that nonpayment is a valid reason for an eviction, it is important to understand that this is not an instant process.
In order for you to be evicted, the landlord must go through the court system to secure permission from the court to evict you. Not surprisingly, this process can take several weeks, and until this order has been given by the court, the landlord can not remove you from the property. Furthermore, if the landlord attempts an illegal eviction, you will be able to sue for damages.
Myth: You Can Only Be Evicted For Missing Rent Payments
Another common assumption is that it is only possible to be evicted for failing to pay your rent. However, this is far from the truth, and there are a host of reasons why your landlord could evict you. Most of these include violating stipulations that are found in your lease. For example, some apartments may evict a tenant for breaching the lease by smoking in the unit.
This is one of the most important reasons for closely reading any lease you sign. By understanding the repercussions of violations of your lease, you will be better able to avoid the surprise of an unexpected eviction notice. However, it should also be noted that the landlord can not simply make up a reason for evicting you, but rather, it must be listed in the lease. If you are being evicted for a reason that is not outlined in your lease, you should contact an attorney that specializes in eviction law because it may be an illegal eviction.
An eviction can be one of the most disruptive experiences in your life, and it can make it difficult for you to be approved for another apartment. By understanding the truth behind these two common myths about evictions, you should be better positioned to protect your rights during this often contentious process.