A lot of people invest in real estate with the fanciful idea that after they have constructed and furnished rentals, their responsibility will be laughing all the way to the bank at the end of every month. However, a lot more goes into real estate investment than just erecting buildings and collecting money from tenants. Sometimes disputes will arise between yourself and the tenants. At other times, it is incidents that lead to property damage and injuries.
The best way to ensure that you do not get into liability suits as a result of these circumstances is having a landlord-tenant lawyer on retainer. Here are three circumstances in which you should hire a competent landlord tenant lawyer.
When You are Evicting a Tenant
One of the most difficult jobs for a landlord is tenant eviction. The process can become a serious legal challenge if you do not understand and follow the right procedure. You should hire a lawyer if it is your first eviction, the tenant is already opposing the eviction with a lawyer, or the tenant has filed for bankruptcy.
These circumstances drag out the eviction process and can even end with you losing a lot of money in unpaid rent and compensation. As soon as an eviction starts showing signs of legal difficulty, get a lawyer.
When You are Facing Illegal Discrimination Claims
The law states that you should not deny any prospective tenant the right to your property simply because of their race, religious belief, gender, or another unique characteristic. At the same time, as a landlord, you are allowed to carry out a background check to ensure that your prospective tenant is a law-abiding citizen who can afford their bills.
Sometimes, you might reject a tenant's application based on their criminal or financial record, only to have them hit you with a discrimination suit. The easy way out of such a complication is hiring a lawyer to help you ensure you followed legal procedures when vetting the tenant.
When Facing Property Damage Charges
Tenants are allowed to sue landlords for property damage. For instance, if a tenant has been complaining about the plumbing and you have taken no action, they could sue you for water damage to their appliances in case of a burst pipe.
Your liability policy will determine how this case ends, but having a lawyer makes the process simple.
You could also hire a landlord-tenant lawyer when being audited by the IRS, and in case of injuries or sickness. A competent lawyer will handle the legal bit of property investment and give you peace of mind to run the business.