What to do and When?

I am still new to the landlording business. My tenant for this month has not pay the rent which was dued on 4/13 and now it is 4/25. I called to remind them of the late payment and they told me the husband lost his job and is waiting for unemployment check to pay the rent.

My question is, when should I be filling for eviction and where. I read the book landlord for dummy, they recommend getting a lawyer to do the eviction but only at a last resort. I am and sure how many month do I have to wait (1 month or 2 months) before I can get an eviction notice. Also, what is the process anyway?

Many Thanks,

Nervous in California, Adelando

The very first thing you need to do is learn your state laws regarding evictions in particular and the tenant-landlord law in general. You can google “California Tenant-Landlord Law”. You might also google California Eviction Laws. I would strongly suggest joining your local REIA and making friends with SUCCESSFUL investors in your area (not other newbies). They will be of immense help.

I think you’ve got a LOT of studying to do. First, rents should be due on the 1st and late on the 3rd or 4th. As soon as the tenant fails to pay the rent in full, then you should immediately start the eviction procedure for your state. My lease says the rents are due by 5pm on the 4th. I post eviction notices on their doors on the morning of the 5th if the rent hasn’t been paid IN FULL. I don’t accept excuses.

You are WAY behind. I would start studying and get caught up fast. The vast majority of new landlords fail in a short period of time. The number one reason for these failures is the lack of cash flow (which can be caused by a big loss). The number two reason for these failures is inability to deal with the tenants. You fit both of these criteria! You will soon follow if you don’t get up to speed and prevent a big loss.

Good Luck,


You are not running a charity you are running a business. Don’t let your tennants make you feel bad about wanting the rent on time. Begin the appropriate process immediately otherwise you are digging a deeper hole for yourself and enabling your tennants bad habits.


This may sound stupid, but the police stations where I invest have a handbook you can take. It covers the tenant’s rights and landlord’s rights. You may want to call your local police station(s) and see if they have anything simular.

I had a tenant that was paid once a month on the 15th. She asked to have the rent due on the 15th instead of the 1st. Like you I figured ok why not. Last month I evicted her and her three children. You will really feel much better if you follow your lease to the letter. Don’t try and be smart, be consistant and follow the your rules.

Lesson 1: Be like a machine, no creative thinking required from a landlord. Money goes in or tenant goes out.

Money goes in or tenant goes out.



I concur, the simplicity is priceless.