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How to evict a tenant from your commercial property

Commercial property owners face a lot of challenges. Many owners struggle to fully understand Arizona's landlord-tenant laws when it comes to evicting a tenant. Eviction proceedings can be complex but understanding the basics of landlord-tenant laws can make the process easier and less stressful. 

Commercial property owners may consider evicting a tenant for a variety of reasons. Most eviction cases are a result of a tenant failing to pay their rent on time, but eviction proceedings can also be started if a tenant violates the terms of his or her lease. 

It is important to become familiar with the laws and guidelines regarding eviction proceedings in Arizona in the event you ever need to evict a tenant from your commercial property. If you are thinking about evicting a tenant, what should you consider before taking any action?

The first thing you should do is review the lease agreement to see if the tenant has violated any terms of the lease. If they have violated their lease, you have grounds for eviction. If the lease states that there is a 30-day grace period for any given circumstance such as late rent, you will have to wait until the grace period has ended before starting the eviction process. 

Next, you should send the tenant a letter notifying him or her that you will start the eviction process if the problem isn't fixed. This includes notifying the tenant about paying unpaid rent, doing maintenance or stopping any business activities that are prohibited in the lease. 

If the problem isn't fixed in the given amount of time on the lease or according to state law, you can file an eviction case in Maricopa County. At your court date, you will have to present evidence to a judge on how the tenant violated the lease and why you are evicting him or her.

If the judge rules in your favor to evict the tenant, you can request a writ of possession that will allow you to legally evict the tenant and take possession of you property. You can use the writ to have a county sheriff remove your tenant if they are still on the property. 

The eviction process may seem complicated but understanding the basics of eviction proceedings can help make the process easier if you ever have to consider evicting a tenant.

Source: Houston Chronicle, "How to Evict a Commercial Tenant," Fraser Sherman, Jan. 20, 2014

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