Dealing With Tenants With Substance Abuse Problems

Renting your place isn’t a simple task no matter what others think. And let’s be honest, they do think you have it easy. You let someone in and you collect the rent money. Simple as that. Or is it? Having tenants also means you’re responsible for everything regarding utilities and installations. It might seem you do nothing and take money in return, but if your tenants don’t pay the heating bill, you’re the one who’s responsible.

Therefore, being a landlord requires much more work, but sometimes, it can turn into an outright nightmare. For example, having tenants with substance abuse, can actually damage your apartment or even mess with your reputation. Dealing with tenants who prioritize doing drugs isn’t easy, so here are the ways you manage the situation:

Talk to them about their substance abuse

If they’ve been in your place for quite some time, and you actually care for them, talking to them could be beneficial. Tell them that you disapprove of their substance abuse but that you still want them to stay. Stand your ground and tell them that there are things you won’t tolerate at any cost. Don’t let them invite their other drug buddies or drug dealers, especially if your place is in an area that’s considered safe. Set some rules and make sure that they’re being followed. Also, tell your tenant that they should pay their bills no matter what and that there’s so much you can tolerate.

Check up on them often

Unless you’re too busy, this is also a good way to make sure everything’s in order. You can give them a call beforehand, but only if you’re relatively nearby your apartment. It might not be good to violate their privacy, but you’re the one who decides what goes. There’s absolutely no reason to tolerate someone’s bad behaviour particularly if they’re not showing any will to improve and get sober. If you don’t want to check up on them often, you can ask a trusted neighbour to take a look and tell you what’s happening. That way you’ll stay informed but you won’t have to barge in that much.

Show them that you care

In case your tenant is a genuinely nice person and you care about them, you can also stage an intervention, and urge them to look for help. If the situation is critical, you can even contact their family members, but that’s something you should do only if you have a closer relationship with your renter. It’s pretty hard knowing someone with serious drug addiction, especially if they’re not aware of the magnitude of their own problem. So, talking to them and showing them support may have a positive effect on them. Be patient and tell them that they’re welcome to come back after they’re done with their treatment and in the meantime, you can temporarily rent your place to some tourists or business people who are passing through your city or town.

Evict them

So, if nothing else works, don’t be afraid to evict them, but make sure that everything’s fine from a legal standpoint. Check with your lawyer is throwing them out can have legal consequences for you, and only after you get a green light, proceed with the eviction process. You might feel sorry for them, but remember that you don’t need to endure such behaviour on your own property. Additionally, give them an eviction notice, so they’ll have time to find another accommodation. There’s no reason to feel guilty especially if your tenant is irresponsible towards your property, furniture and paying their bills. Just because they stay at your place doesn’t mean you have to babysit them and worry whether something will go wrong because of their poor lifestyle choices.

Having a tenant with alcohol or drug addiction can be stressful, so before you take any further steps, make sure to check with your lawyer what’s the best thing to do. Being compassionate and nice is fine if your tenant is working on their betterment, but if they’re constantly late on their payments, you have a full right to part ways with them. After all, you’re not their parent or a loved one, so it’s really not your business to put up with anything they do.

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