To many people, the eviction process in Georgia seems so daunting. For the vast majority of us, standing before a judge to defend our position can be foreign and very scary. Today, we’re discussing dispossessory action and how to evict a tenant in the Atlanta area.
Marietta Property Management: Know the Law
There is a Georgia Landlord Tenant handbook written by the state. This is the Bible the courts go by during any action between landlords and tenants. Adhere to the rules in this handbook at all times. Put everything in writing, and keep your documentation.
Atlanta Property Management: Working with Tenants
It’s always best to try and work something out with your tenant. You’ll get the property back within a few days in lieu of filing for eviction and having it on your tenant’s record. That’s your leverage. If a tenant cannot pay rent now, the odds are low that you’ll recover anything that’s due to you, even after you go to court. If can’t work out an agreement with your tenant, be sure you’ve provided written notice to the tenant that you’re taking dispossessory action. After you’ve given the required notice, you file your eviction in court, in the county where your property is located. In many counties, this can be filed online.
Filing the Eviction
You need all pertinent information about your tenant and what’s owed. Include any past and future late fees, past or daily rent, and cleaning fees or other costs you’ll incur to move this tenant out. There will also be a filing fee of about $100. The sheriff will deliver the eviction notice within two weeks. If the tenant is not home, the notice is tacked to the door, and this is considered a delivery. In most cases, the tenant has seven days to respond. If there’s no response, you’ll get the property back. But, wait for the written notice before you try to go inside. Don’t take possession until a judge has signed off on the release.
If the tenant responds, you’ll get a court date. Gather your documents and head to court. Plan to spend the whole day there, waiting for your case to be heard. If you miss the court date, the case is dismissed and your tenant will stay until you start over again. You may lose your right to what was owed up until that point, so make sure you get to court on the assigned day. The judge may ask you to go to mediation. We recommend you take this option to show good faith. You’ll be moved to a room with an impartial mediator who will try to reach an agreement. Remember that you’re unlikely to recover funds. So, work it out so the tenants clean out the home and move out in three to five days. Then, if they default, you’ll get the home at the end of that period. If mediation is not possible, plead your case to the judge. Be organized and ready, and wait for the judgment in your favor.
To minimize and avoid evictions, it’s imperative to find the best tenant up front. At Atlanta Area Property Management, we guarantee your tenants when we place them and manage your property. Contact us at Atlanta Area Property Management, Inc. We would love to help you will all your Atlanta property management needs.