Eviction Education For Landlords

As a landlord, sometimes action needs to be taken when a tenant does not properly adhere to the housing contract between the tenant and the landlord.  Sometimes this action comes in the form of an "Eviction Notice."  The Department of Off-Campus Housing is here to provide landlords with knowledge and resources that will help them properly address evictions with residents while maintaining the situation professionally.  

We also provide similar resources to our students so that all parties involved can properly handle an eviction notice that may arise. We inform our students to take immediate action when presented with an eviction notice.  We instruct our students to provide necessary documentation and to act professionally by bringing down their emotions during the situation.

RESIDENTS MAY BE INEXPERIENCED: Many of the residents are students who may be inexperienced and some students have never handled housing situations on their own.  Students are learning and growing everyday and we ask that you please treat them kindly and professionally.

CUSTOMERS TALK TO CUSTOMERS: Remember residents are your customers.  Landlords should realize that "your customers talk with other customers."  Potential future customers ask about how the landlord treats their tenants.  As a landlord or manager, always present the best image possible so the reputation of you and your property can grow.  A good reputation gets you customers, and customers bring you income.

PRESENT THE "WHY": Always inform the resident why they have received an eviction notice.  Immediately address the concern with the tenant in a professional manner.  Sometimes there can be a minor clerical error and sometimes it can be the fault of the tenant.  Presenting why the tenant received an eviction notice can help the issue be resolved more quickly. 

PROVIDE PROPER DOCUMENTATION:  Most of the time, proper documentation is the proof needed to show which side is correct. Always provide tenants with physical copies of all documentation related to your housing (such as Contracts, Payment Receipts, Monthly Statements, Special Notices, Deposits, Utilities, etc.)  Online documents are good, but sometimes documents can be altered online without both parties knowing it.

REMEMBER - ACT PROFESSIONAL

Evictions

Evictions can only occur through a court order after a landlord has sued the tenant for eviction in a Superior Court. Tenants cannot be evicted by a landlord telling the tenant that they are evicted or by threatening to evict.

To recover possession of real property, a landlord must proceed according to Title 78B, Chapter 6, Pt. 8 of the Utah Code (Utah Code 78B-6-801 through 816).

Illegal Evictions

Evictions are illegal when the landlord performs certain illegal acts to try to force the tenant out. Illegal evictions are considered a retaliatory offense and the police must help tenants who are illegally being evicted. Landlords doing any of the following to try to get tenants out is illegal:

  • The landlord uses violence or threats of violence.
  • Shutting off the water, electricity, or gas to try to force you to move out.
  • Locking you out of the rental unit.
  • Moving, holding or taking your personal belongings from the premises (ex. clothing or furniture.) This is illegal even if you owe rent.

A landlord who does any of these things is breaking the law and can be taken to court. A landlord or any other person who enters an apartment or property without a court order authorizing such entry and/or holds your belongings unlawfully by force or by threat of money owed may be liable to damages to you. If you are evicted in this way, you may file a complaint with the clerk of the Landlord-Tenant Court in the county where the illegal eviction has occurred.

Mediation, Conflict and Dispute Resolution

Utah Valley University provides a free mediation service through the Ombuds located in the Office of Judicial Affairs and Dispute Resolution.

What is Mediation?
This is a tool that can be utilized to help resolve disputes that may arise between a Tenant and a Landlord. For further information on this service, please contact the Ombuds through the Student Conduct and Dispute Resolution:

 

DISCLAIMER: Please reference the "Housing Disclaimer" page.