Evicting tenants during the holidays is never a pleasant experience. Business is business, but a landlord can feel like a heartless Scrooge in this situation. Holidays are a time for caring for and giving to those around us. Telling an individual or a family that they’ll lose their home isn’t a cheerful message to deliver.
At the same time, you have to consider your financial needs and the responsibility you owe to your other tenants. You may also be struggling financially, or perhaps you have a family to support. If you start making exceptions, other tenants may expect you to be lenient. This could affect your entire business and the stability you provide to current tenants. If your business starts to suffer as a result of your kindness, for example, you may have to raise rent for others. That isn’t necessarily fair to those who are keeping up with their responsibilities and paying rent on time. What should you do? If you’re planning to evict tenants during the holidays, here are some things to consider.
Should You Avoid Evicting Tenants During the Holidays?
First, Know the Law
In most states, landlords can’t evict tenants on Sundays or nationally recognized holidays. We recommend checking with your local government prior to sending out an eviction notice. Weekends and holidays are not allowed as waiting periods in some municipalities in Colorado. Therefore, if you give a ten-day notice that ends on a holiday, it would actually go into effect on the following business day. You should also keep in mind that you cannot evict anybody without a sheriff and a court order. Read more about how to handle evictions in Denver here.
Consider Whether You Can Delay an Eviction
If you’re unsure about evicting a tenant during the holidays, you may want to consider your options. First of all, can you afford to delay the eviction? What shape is your business in right now? Are you able to offer your tenant leniency for a month or two? If the answer is no, it’s likely you’ll have to proceed with the eviction. You may be able to make an exception, however, if you are in good financial standing this holiday season. Ultimately, the decision rests with you, and there’s nothing wrong with letting your principles guide you. If you don’t feel right about evicting tenants during the holidays, follow your instincts. You don’t want to make a decision that will weigh on you later. On the other hand, it’s worth noting that there is never a good time to evict tenants. Will waiting only make you delay the inevitable even longer?
If You Must Evict, Be Compassionate
Let’s say you’ve decided to evict a tenant during the holidays. In addition to following state laws, you should broach the subject with as much humanity as possible. Let your tenants know that the decision was not personal and you wish them the best. If you want to take further steps, consider connecting them to local resources or a community shelter. Evicting a tenant is a business matter, but there’s no need to be cold or unkind. All of us go through hardships, and more compassion is needed during the holiday season.
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