In Texas, the rental vacancy rate is only slightly higher than the national average, with popular places like McAllen, Texas, presenting good potential to earn rental income.
McAllen boasts mild weather, has an affordable cost of living, and is one of the country's fastest-growing neighborhoods, so it's a great option for investors. Unfortunately, the city also boasts high foreclosure and eviction rates now that pandemic relief programs have ended.
When purchasing a rental property, the last thing you think about is managing evictions. Prepare yourself for this possibility by reading this concise guide to removing tenants in Texas.
Evictions and Texas Law
Under the Fair Housing Act, you can never evict a tenant as an act of discrimination or retaliation. You can only evict tenants for the following reasons:
- Non-payment of rent
- Damaging your property
- Violating the lease agreement
- Staying in place after the lease expires
- Illegal activities
- Causing a significant disturbance to others
It's important to try and remedy the situation amicably before proceeding with an eviction. Evictions and vacancies are costly, and it makes sense to avoid them if you can.
There are instances, where landlords should consider allowing their tenants to break their lease without penalties.
The Texas Tenant Evictions Process
If you need to evict tenants, you must follow a specific process; you can't just demand that they leave. It's vital to get qualified legal assistance when it comes to evictions.
These are the prescribed steps for evicting a tenant:
Written Notice to Vacate
An eviction notice must include the amount of time the tenant has to vacate the premises or remedy their actions. The minimum time frame is three days.
File the Eviction Suit
The landlord files the eviction paperwork with their local court. The court schedules an eviction hearing a minimum of ten days afterward.
The judge will make a decision based on the evidence presented. The parties have five days to appeal.
If the tenant files an appeal, another hearing is scheduled for eight days afterward.
Final Judgement and Writ of Possession
When the judge hands down their final judgment, the landlord can ask for a writ of possession. The constable must post a 24-hour notice before executing the writ, which means removing the tenant's belongings from the rental property.
Landlord Advice for Avoiding Evictions
Tenant screening is a good starting point for avoiding tenant evictions. Working with an experienced property manager is the best way to stack the odds even more in your favor.
Property management services assist with tenant retention by collecting rent on time, so it doesn't become unmanageable. They will inspect your property regularly to encourage lease compliance and limit damages.
You may also sign up for eviction protection as part of your management agreement. Under this arrangement, the property management firm will assist you with your legal fees for evictions up to a specified amount.
Hire a Property Manager Today
PMI RGV property management services can help you avoid or manage evictions in your rental property. We offer outstanding tenant management systems and a generous eviction protection program.
Get in touch to find out how we can help you thrive as a McAllen, TX, landlord.