It is not often that a landlord wants to evict one of their tenants, but there are situations where doing so is the only thing that can be done. While some eviction procedures are similar from state to state, there are some differences in how landlords are required to handle it. If you are a landlord in Delaware, here is a quick guide to the process in your state.
Grounds for eviction
The state of Delaware allows you to evict a tenant for four possible reasons:
- Not paying rent
- Violating the terms of their lease
- Threatening irreparable damage to the rental unit or people in the unit
- The tenant has been involved in illegal activities in the unit
The process of eviction
If you are evicting a tenant, you need to start by providing the tenant a written notice.
If the eviction is for not paying rent, you will need to give them a five-day notice to pay what they owe before terminating the lease. If they have violated their lease agreement, it is a seven day notice to remedy the violation. If that lease agreement violation also violates city, county, or state laws, you can give them a seven-day unconditional quit notice. This notice allows you to terminate the lease without giving the tenant time to correct the issue. The only way you are allowed to evict a tenant without notice is if the tenant threatens irreparable harm to the unit they are renting, the property around it, or other people inside of it.
Whether a notice is necessary or not, you are required by law to file an eviction lawsuit as soon as you terminate the lease. The eviction is not legal otherwise, even if you have grounds to do so. If you try to take matters into your own hands, you could find yourself on the other end of a wrongful eviction lawsuit.
Once the lawsuit is complete and the judge has decided in your favor, your part in the eviction is complete. A law enforcement officer will be given the court order and take responsibility for removing the tenant from your property.
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