Landlords and tenants need a basic understanding of California rental laws, or they risk getting taken advantage of or losing money. Landlords have limitations on their rights once they lease the property to tenants, and the lease tenants sign also limits what they can do with the property.
Sometimes, landlords want to remove tenants who have signed a lease and could stay at the property for many more months. If the tenant doesn’t agree to leave of their own volition, the only option for the landlord is eviction.
When is it legal for a California landlord to evict a tenant?
When they stop paying rent
One of the most common reasons for modern evictions is the non-payment of rent. Without reliable payments from tenants, landlords may have a hard time meeting the basic costs for the property, such as the mortgage and tax payments for the property.
Depending on the terms of the lease, a landlord can potentially seek an eviction once their tenant falls behind on rent. The lease may include provisions about how many payments might trigger an eviction.
When they break the lease or affect other tenants
Leases often include restrictions on the use of the property, including rules against pets or limitations on how many guests can visit at once or how many nights a guest can stay. When the landlord has proof that a tenant has violated the terms of their lease, they may be able to use those violations as grounds for an eviction.
If a tenant’s behavior affects other people’s ability to live in and enjoy the property, a landlord may take action to evict them before other tenants decide to terminate their leases. In both non-payment and nuisance evictions, three-day notice to address the issue is typically required.
When they break the law
If a landlord discovers that their tenant has engaged in prostitution or drug trafficking out of a rental unit, they can evict the tenant for their illegal behavior.
Tenants facing evictions that don’t have a basis in the law or their lease could fight back to stay at the property. Landlords dealing with problem tenants may have no choice but to remove them if they will not leave on their own and may affect other tenants or the value of the property. Learning more about California’s rental laws can help those dealing with a rental conflict find the best response.