Many people I’ve explained this to don’t understand or refuse to understand the logic behind this warning. But be warned, this is almost a dead give-away that you’re dealing with a deadbeat.
Generally tenants don’t always find themselves in the best situations financially. Aside from some young professionals and students, chances are the person who is renting from you is struggling financially, or at the very least, is on a fixed income. Money these days is so cheap that most people with a steady job can afford to buy their own home and achieve their own version of the American Dream. Of course the “dream” is just a trap, but I won’t get into that here.
Whenever someone comes to rent an apartment from me and suggests paying cash the same day it raises a major red flag in my mind because it suggests that this person needs an apartment immediately. They’re likely trying to pull the wool over my eyes and get me to give them the key. Of course, giving someone the key closes the door on your rights in Massachusetts as a Landlord. Think of the keys as a symbol of your rights. Once they’re transferred so too are your rights as someone trying to bargain at arm’s length.
Many of my clients know that I’m not only a Landlord Tenant Attorney, but an active Landlord in Massachusetts. Despite the fact that I’m only 30 years old I’ve been helping manage my family’s residential and real estate since I was 12. My duties over these past 18 years have stemmed from janitorial to maintenance to accounting to legal.
I’ve represented hundreds of Landlords in some pretty nasty evictions. Invariably my clients always ask me something along the lines of “If I’d only known this tenant was going to be so bad..what do you do to screen your tenants?”
My answer is consistent: You can never really know. The common metric landlords rely upon (credit-check) carries little weight in my book. I’ve often rented to people with great credit that have been the most terrible tenants. Likewise I’ve rented to some people that have had terrible credit and ended up being the best tenant.
With that established, I’ve compiled a list of the top 5 warnings, based on my experience as a Landlord and Landlord Tenant Attorney, that you’re dealing with a bad tenant.
This is the first of a 5-part series on “Top 5 Mistakes Landlords Make.” Check back to see what rounds out the five most frequent mistakes I have come across as an attorney and as a landlord for the past 16 years.
Welcome to the Rental Attorney Blog. My name is John Keramaris, I’m an attorney from Woburn, MA. I devote over 60% of my practice to Landlord Tenant matters. This includes Summary Process Evictions, Code Enforcement and Rental Premises Liability.
Over the next day, week, month, year I will be posting articles and linking videos, and sites relevant to Landlord Tenant Law in MA.