Big Mistakes Landlords make which cost a lot of time & money!

I have been representing landlord’s for over 17 years now.  I’ve seen all sorts of shenanigans pulled by tenants. But I’ve also seen how landlords make a mess of their own case and jeopardize the outcome.  Here are the some of the many mistakes landlords make:

  • Failure to run a credit/background check on tenants, usually because the landlord doesn’t want to pay for it, yet this cost can be passed off to the tenant.
  • Failure to have the tenant fill out an application.
  • Failure to collect a big enough security deposit to cover actual physical damages to the property, although in Chicago mis-handling of the security deposit can lead to a whole new set of troubles.
  • Failure to hire a lawyer when you’ve hit a brick wall – like when the tenant files a jury demand or when your property is in an LLC, Partnership or Company.
  • Failure to make motions or other legal steps at the appropriate time and to deal with the latest circumstance presented:
    1. Motion to appoint a special process server when the Sheriff didn’t succeed in serving the tenant(s) with summons and court papers
    2. Motion for use and occupancy when the tenant files a jury demand which drags on the case and causes you the landlord to be losing out on monthly rent as the case proceeds
    3. Initiate Interrogatories, Document Production and Requests to Admit which the tenant(s) must respond to or suffer consequences of failing to answer
  • Failure to know a Landlord-Tenant law exists in your City or Village which governs your actions and the actions of your tenant.
  • Failure to be practical and make a business decision to negotiate with the tenant to end the case and stop the bleeding.

Zoe Biel is a practicing attorney in the Chicagoland area.  All information provided in this blog is meant to be informational and not a substitute for seeking out the advice of an attorney based upon your own individual case.

Expansion of my Mission

I set out when creating this blog to help offer the personal perspective of a lawyer regarding my baptism by fire into the area of Probate, Wills, Trusts, Special Needs Trusts, and dealing with wrapping up someone’s affairs after they die.  I will continue on that path, however, I have decided I have a wealth of information to offer from a personal point of view which may be useful to you or someone you know.

All information provided here in this Blog is informational and should not replace your consulting an attorney in your State with your specific situation.