As a landlord, you have a responsibility to keep your tenants safe, especially from other tenants. In addition, failing to take action after you discover a criminal activity taking place on your rental property can result in lawsuits and an array of other problems for your property. You can be held liable if a tenant inflicts damage on other occupants or even if they inflict damage to the neighborhood where your rental property is located. In addition to preventing criminal activity from occurring on your property, it is important to protect your tenants from external criminal activity. This requires regular inspections, as well as making necessary repairs to ensure that the property is as safe as possible.
Signs of Criminal Activity
The most common criminal activity that takes place in rental property is dealing drugs. Therefore, many of the signs of criminal activity are related to drug distribution. If there is excessive traffic in and out of your rental property and visitors stay for only short times, it is likely that your tenant is dealing drugs. Frequently walking out to cars, excessive night-time activity, drug paraphernalia, suspicious odors, and tenant isolation are all indications that criminal activity may be occurring on your property.
What to Do
If you suspect criminal activity is occurring on your property, it is important to act quickly. A tenant engaging in criminal activities can be endangering other tenants and you may be held liable for relevant lawsuits, such as public nuisance lawsuits. This may also diminish the quality of your tenant pool. If you are certain that your tenant is engaging in criminal activity, you should notify the police rather than attempting to confront the individual yourself. If the police have obtained clear proof, you should begin the eviction process. Familiarize yourself with the eviction laws and how the criminal activities may impact the process.
One of the best ways to minimize criminal activity on your property is through thorough tenant screening. Here at Keyrenter, we complete an effective tenant screening process to help you weed out potential problems before they occur. However, even a tenant screening process may not completely prevent criminal activity from occurring on your property, so it is important to know how to handle the situation if it should arrive. To learn more about this, contact our experts at the Keyrenter in New England today!