When you’re renting out an Orlando property, you carefully screen tenants so you know you’re leasing your home to responsible, reliable people with verified income and a positive rental history. It protects you and your investment.
What about people who were never screened?
You don’t want any unauthorized occupants at your property because you have no idea who they are and whether they’re qualified to rent your home. You also have no way to hold them accountable if rent isn’t paid or property damage occurs.
A strong lease agreement will have a clear section on guests and how long they’re permitted to stay in your property. If you notice that guests have turned into occupants, there are a few important steps you need to take.
Removing the Occupant: Sending a Notice to Your Tenant
If you don’t want that unauthorized occupant to remain in the property, you need to send your tenant a notice instructing them to have their guest leave immediately. Provide a deadline (five to seven days for example). Schedule an inspection of the property after that date so you can be sure the person has left. If they don’t leave and your tenant refuses to come into compliance, you can take the next step, which is filing for eviction.
Evicting that unauthorized occupant may be difficult. It can be hard to prove that they’re living there, and your tenant who is listed on the lease agreement may claim they were just visiting or not actually living there.
Ask the Occupant to Complete an Application and Consent to Screening
If you are not opposed to keeping the additional occupant in place, you can ask the unauthorized resident to complete an application form. Then, you can go through your regular screening process to make sure the individual is qualified.
Run a background check, a nationwide eviction check, and a credit check. Ask for employment information and rental references. If they are approved through the screening process, you can amend the lease agreement and have both the original tenant and the new occupant as the official renters.
Preventing Unauthorized Occupants
Prevention is far easier than dealing with the problem after the unauthorized tenant has already moved in. Working with professional Orlando property managers can help. There are some good processes we put in place to ensure only qualified and screened residents are living in your home.
Our lease agreement always defines an occupant versus a guest. We discuss the lease in detail with new tenants before they move in. You’ll have to decide whether you are going to allow long term guests, and make sure your lease agreement is specific about how long guests can stay.
A good tenant relationship and ongoing inspections can also help. Tenants are less likely to violate their lease agreement if they have a positive and professional relationship with their landlord or property manager.
We work hard to keep your property safe and your tenants in compliance with their lease agreement. If you’d like some help with this or anything pertaining to Orlando property management, please contact us at Park Avenue Property Management.