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Eviction Laws in Georgia

Are you currently the landlord of a property in Northwest Georgia?

Knowing the basic laws related to owning a property is a must. Not only that, but you should also be aware of the eviction laws.

Let’s take a look at the different eviction laws in Georgia and how you can avoid breaking them.

 

Evictions in Georgia

In Georgia, there are a variety of reasons that a tenant can get evicted.

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Before the landlord can actually evict the tenants, the tenants have to be given the chance to come into acquiescence with the rental terms. If the tenant still does not follow the terms in the lease agreement, the landlord can file for an eviction lawsuit.

 

When Tenants Can’t Get Evicted

A landlord cannot evict their tenants if he or she does not have a cause or a legal reason to do so. By law, a landlord is required to give their tenants a written copy explaining where they violated their agreement and the chance to redeem themselves. Again, this also depends on the severity of the cause.

If:

  • The cause is very serious they can be evicted within 24 hrs.
  • There is no apparent reason that the landlord wants to evict the tenants, he or she must wait until the rental lease has ended before the tenants are required to move out.
  • The eviction is not urgent and there is no proper cause under the landlord and tenant agreement, the landlord legally has to give his or her tenants a written 60-day notice of eviction.

According to Nolo, a publishing company, “A landlord must never attempt to force a tenant to move out of a rental unit. The only legal way to remove a tenant is for the landlord to file an eviction lawsuit and win it. Even after the landlord wins the lawsuit, only a sheriff or constable is allowed to remove, or evict, the tenant. Illegal Eviction Procedures in Georgia has more information on illegal eviction practices.

The landlord may find that the tenant has left personal property at the rental unit after moving out. If the tenant moved out of the rental unit at the natural end of the tenancy and not because of an eviction, then Georgia law does not give any guidance as to what the landlord should do with that property. The best practice will be for the landlord to try to contact the tenant and return the property, especially if it is something of value.”

 

Importance of a Good Screening Process

A landlord must abide by all the rules and regulations by law in order to evict a tenant. For this reason, it’s important to have a good screening process in place to select only the best prospective tenants to rent your property.

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If not, your chances of selecting a problematic tenant rise significantly and it may be difficult to evict them if you don’t have a legitimate reason.

 

What You Should Include in an Eviction Notice

An eviction notice should include the following:

  • The date the eviction notice was served to the renter.
  • The full name of the tenant and address of the property.
  • The main cause why the tenant is being removed.
  • The sum of the over-due rent charges.
  • A declaration that the renter has a precise time to recompense the rent or you will begin the eviction process.
  • A declaration of how the eviction announcement was served to the tenant.

According to the Georgia Landlord Tenant Handbook, “the Georgia landlord-tenant laws do not specify how long you should wait before filing an eviction lawsuit. You have the option to give the tenant a period of 24 hours to 10 days to comply with the notice. If the tenant refuses to comply, you can go ahead and file an eviction lawsuit.”

Always remain as respectful as possible in this type of situation and understand what both parties are going through. Some landlords are not compassionate and forget that everyone is fighting a different battle. If you need to evict your renters sooner than later, try talking with them and settling a mutual agreement. Just because your renters are allocated a 60-day notice, does not mean that they will stay that long. You can offer a rental-break if they can move out early. As long as you have a good relationship with your tenants this can be a possibility.

 

The Bottom Line

The aforementioned points are all important to consider if you’re a landlord in Northwest Georgia or plan on being one in the near future.

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If you would like a professional property management company to handle the eviction process for you, don’t hesitate to contact us at HAAS Properties.