As a landlord, it’s generally in your best interest to have your tenants sign a lease agreement. Leases are required in Texas for tenancies lasting longer than a year, and they provide you with legal protection in court.
If you don’t have a lease agreement, though, you can still evict a tenant as long as you follow Texas eviction laws.
No written lease
If there is no lease, a Texas landlord can evict a tenant without providing a reason. Simply give notice to vacate, and follow eviction proceedings if the tenant fails to leave.
When there is a verbal agreement but no written lease, whatever terms specified verbally must still be honored. Depending on what the verbal understanding specifies, this may mean you can’t evict the tenant without cause.
Notice to vacate
How much notice you provide depends on how often the tenant pays rent. If rent is paid once per month, the tenant must have one month’s written notice to vacate.
If rent is paid on less than a monthly basis, the landlord must provide that same amount of time to vacate. For example, if rent is paid each week, the landlord needs to provide one week’s notice in writing.
When a tenant continues to live in a rental unit after a lease expires, the renter becomes a “holdover tenant.” The landlord can renew the lease, allow the tenant to continue living without a written lease, or evict the tenant.
If the lease has expired, no reason needs to be given for an eviction. The landlord must provide 3 days’ notice to vacate in writing before starting eviction proceedings.
The eviction process
When you’re losing money on a rental property because a tenant won’t vacate, it may be tempting to rush the eviction process.
However, failing to follow Texas guidelines could cause you to lose the eviction case once it reaches trial. It’s recommended you speak with an attorney experienced in real estate law, such as Leslie Werner. As a multiple-unit landlord herself, Leslie understands the intricacies involved in the eviction and lease making process.
If you are new or old to being a landlord, contact The Werner Law Group today at 361-578-7200 to understand your rights.