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How to Legally Kick Out Your Roommate

By Mike in Urban Lifestyle with 0 Comments

Although shacking up with a friend is a great way to cut your spending after putting down a wad of cash for a condo for sale in Downtown San Diego, there is always the potential for things to go awry. Once they do, ending your roommate’s tenancy could prove far more challenging than you think. Fortunately, with due legal process you can beat the stress, reclaim your property, and get on with your life. Taking the right steps is essential for avoiding financial hardship and other problems further down the road.

All Parties Have the Right to Notice and Due Process

The first and most important thing to note when roommate agreements turn sour is that all tenants have a right to notice and due process, even unauthorized tenants who have not signed a formal lease. If a person has held residence in your home for any considerable amount of time, you cannot simply box up his or her belongings and toss them into the street. Letting people stay in your home for an extended period without a formal lease is considered the same as offering a verbal, month-to-month rental agreement. Thus, you will need to issue a one-page declaration that states the end of the roommate agreement (no matter how informal this agreement may be) and is dated and signed by you.

Writing Your Declaration

Templates for end-of-tenancy declarations can be found online. Your declaration must also state a deadline for leaving, which is typically two weeks to thirty days from the date of the written declaration. It is additionally important to ensure that off-the-record and on-the-record roommates are in physical receipt of these documents before considering them as binding and in effect. You can do this by delivery via certified mail to ensure that a written record of receipt exists.

Taking Your Case to Court

In ideal circumstances, an unwanted roommate will choose to bow out gracefully after having received a written statement of the tenancy’s end. If not, you’ll have to head to the local courthouse to file a petition for eviction. You will then be assigned a date for an eviction hearing. On your court date, make sure to have a copy of your written declaration in hand and all other documentation pertaining to any formal, roommate agreement. Once your eviction petition is granted, your roommate can either leave on his or her own recognizance or wait to be escorted off the premises by the sheriff.

If you’re ready for your own space, work with a Downtown San Diego real estate broker who knows the ins and outs of the area and can help you find the space you want—no roommates required. ')}