How to Handle Evictions: A Guide for Melbourne Landlords

How to Handle Evictions: A Guide for Melbourne Landlords

Real estate is a great investment to make, but it doesn't come without risks.

One of the key risks of owning a rental property is problematic tenants. Tenants who damage your property and don't pay rent on time can cause negative cash flows.

Landlords can legally evict bad tenants who fail to follow property rules, but how?

The Melbourne, Florida eviction process can seem complex if you don't know the laws. If you want to legally go through with evictions, you must follow these steps.

Notice to Vacate

To initiate an eviction lawsuit, you must give the tenant a written notice to leave the rental property. The requirements for the notice to vacate depend on the reason for eviction. Legal eviction reasons include:

  • Nonpayment of rent
  • Lease agreement violation
  • Lease term expiration
  • Holding over after lease termination
  • Breach of statutory duties

Nonpayment of rent requires a 3-day notice to pay what is owed or vacate the premises. Lease violations require a 7-day notice to fix the issue or vacate.

File an Eviction Lawsuit

Tenants who ignore the notice to vacate by staying on the property or not paying back rent can be evicted. Melbourne landlords can then file an eviction lawsuit, aka an unlawful detainer action.

Upon filing, you need to provide the court with supporting documents that prove your claim. Evictions can't be done without evidence and court approval.

If you hire a property management company, you can give your managers the authority to file eviction lawsuits and conduct eviction proceedings.

Serve the Tenant

The tenant needs to be aware of the set court date. You'll serve a copy of the eviction lawsuit and summons to appear in court to the tenant. You can serve the tenant in the following ways:

  • Sending the lawsuit via certified mail
  • Posting the letter in a visible place on the property
  • Delivering it to the tenant
  • Giving it to a credible occupant of the rental unit

Generally, the tenant has about five days to respond to the lawsuit.

Court Hearing and Judgment

If the tenant decides to contest the lawsuit, a court hearing will be scheduled. Landlords must attend the court date and present the case with evidence supporting tenant misconduct. The tenant will be given the same opportunity to defend themself.

If the court rules in your favor, a judge will issue a judgment for possession. The enforcement of judgment gives the tenant a timeline of when they need to move out.

If they do not move out, the judge can issue a writ of possession. This allows the local police department to remove the tenant from your property.

Handling Evictions in Melbourne

Handling evictions legally is the only way to do them. If you fail to follow the above steps, the eviction may not be valid.

If you don't have time to evict bad tenants, hiring a rental property management company can help. At PMI Space Coast, we have years of experience in the local real estate industry.

We understand eviction laws in Melbourne and can help you stay compliant. Contact us today to get rid of a bad tenant quickly and effectively.