A Richmond, VA Landlord's Guide to Evictions

A Richmond, VA Landlord's Guide to Evictions

Did you know that Richmond's eviction rate is the second highest nationwide?

Rising prices of homes and rent averages are the most significant factors for why this happened. Now, if you're a new landlord, it's understandable if you want to know how to handle evictions properly. Of course, you want to be fair to your tenants, but you also don't want to be taken advantage of.

That said, here's what you should know about handling evictions.

Understanding Reasons to Evict Tenants

A quick look at Virginia eviction laws clarifies why some tenants must be evicted. First, a landlord has the right to evict them if they don't pay rent.

The second and third reasons involve violating applicable building and house codes, as well as federal, state, or local laws. Breaking the rules of the rental agreement, especially when the infraction occurs more than once within six months, is also grounds for eviction.

However, just because the reasons for evicting tenants are apparent doesn't mean you don't have to follow procedures for tenant eviction. In Virginia, you cannot force tenants to move by changing their locks, turning off their utilities, or removing their belongings. You also cannot evict tenants simply because you don't like them.

Evictions in Richmond, VA: Following the Process

Before you worry about a court hearing, understand that the first step to evicting a tenant is serving them with a written notice. If they fail to pay rent, you must serve them a 5-Day Notice, which gives them five days to pay all their dues. You can proceed with the eviction if they refuse to pay what they owe you.

For tenants who violate rental agreements, landlords can serve the 30-Day Notice to Comply or the 30-Day Notice to Quit. The first is for infractions that can still be corrected, while the other is for violations that cannot be remedied (e.g., extensive rental property damage).

Note that if a tenant does something illegal, you don't need to inform them before filing a court complaint. After they receive a summons and complaint from a sheriff or process server, they should attend the eviction hearing to present their case. If they don't attend, the court will usually rule in your favor, after which you can request a writ of possession.

A Hands-Off Approach to Handling Evictions

Being a landlord comes with many responsibilities. If overseeing rental units isn't your only source of income, it's best to work with a leasing management company in Richmond, VA.

The ideal scenario is not to evict anyone, which is possible if you hire property managers who are meticulous when it comes to tenant screening and management. If you have yet to commit to being a full-time landlord or need help, consider working with a reliable property management company.

Let Us Help You With Evictions and Other Rental Property Challenges

Now that you know more about evictions in Richmond, VA, are you looking for a full-service property management company to help you with day-to-day operations and more?

We're here for you. Our hundreds of property management locations nationwide are a testament to our expertise. Contact us to learn more about our services.