How to Handle Tenants Who Go Bad

Part of being a rental property owner means being diligent about screening tenants before handing them the keys and trusting them to be good with your property. This can be a tricky and stressful process, but it shouldn’t be skipped. Some supposedly good tenants are waiting in disguise and will show their true selves down the road.


So, how do you avoid this? It might be impossible to avoid the situation completely, but there are some ways to be smart and greatly reduce the chances. Here are some tips:

Be Careful Even After Screening
Some bad tenants might pass your screening process with flying colors. They have excellent credit, hold good jobs, and have great feedback from previous landlords. But then, you start to get a bad feeling about them. You suddenly realize they are quite rude, or they show up late for appointments or miss them completely. Maybe they have expectations that are impossible and are always demanding more.

If this happens consistently, remember that it’s never too late to chance your mind if the lease hasn’t been signed yet. The lease is a binding contract, but up until it’s been signed and you’ve handed over the keys, nothing is set in stone and you hold the power to decide who you rent to.

So now you might be wondering, “but what if the lease has already been signed and they’re still a nightmare?”


Handling Good Tenants Gone Bad
If a tenant doesn’t show who they really are until after things can be signed and done, things are a little more difficult. But it starts with communication.

You might try telling them that you feel maybe you aren’t the right landlord for them and a different property might be better for fitting their specific needs. You can even offer to refund their deposit and terminate the lease if they leave the property clean. This lets you give them an out without seeming pushy or starting any type of drama. Plus, as a landlord it’s helpful for you to realize when a tenant is just going to cause you unnecessary strife over the long-term that isn’t worth it.

Rental property owners will some time or another come across bad tenants, and that’s okay. Knowing how to handle and prepare for them goes a long way in preserving your success — and your sanity.

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