One of the worst case scenarios for a landlord is realizing that a tenant has caused damage to their property. Instead of acting emotionally and potentially making a legal error, it’s a great idea to logically think through your best course of action. You might not know the right way to handle this situation, which is why we’ve put together an article to help you out. Keep reading on below to learn more about what to do when your tenant damages your property. (Related topics: landlord-tenant law in NYC, real estate lawyer NYC)
After you realize that a tenant has damaged your property, you should make sure that you document everything. Take photos of the damage that are clear and show evidence of the issue. Make sure you have records of any communications with the tenant that let them know their responsibilities and inform them of the damage that occurred. You should also document a few quotes you obtain from contractors that detail the prices of repairing the damage. Documenting everything is absolutely essential when your tenant damages your property.
It’s your responsibility as a landlord to talk with your tenant about the damage that occurred. Sometimes, the tenant will take responsibility for their actions and offer to repair or pay for the damage. You might even want to offer a payment plan that helps the tenant deal with the damages without added financial stress. Listen to what they have to say and be open to negotiation to give yourself the best chances of a positive outcome.
Sometimes, things get to a point where you want to file a civil suit against a tenant. This is the time which you should consider hiring a real estate lawyer in NYC. Speaking with a New York real estate lawyer is always a great idea when a tenant damages your property because you can learn about the best approach from a legal perspective. If you decide to file a civil lawsuit, having a real estate lawyer in NYC is crucial.
If things become hostile between you and your tenant or they continue causing extensive damage to the property, you can always explore eviction. Filing for eviction can be a complicated process, so make sure you consult with a New York real estate lawyer if you aren’t sure if it’s the best course of action.