How to Find a Good Eviction Attorney
By John Nuzzolese
A plumber needs wrenches to do plumbing properly. A carpenter needs a
hammer to be able to drive nails properly. Can you imagine a roofer
banging in the nails in your new roof with a monkey wrench or a pipe
instead of a hammer? How ridiculous! With that in mind, do you know how
many landlords get legal advice on landlord tenant matters from
unqualified family members and aquaintances? Some landlords even ask
their other tenants for advice. The sad fact is most landlords DO NOT
even have an eviction attorney to turn to when tenant problems arise.
They'd rather ask their friends, neighbors, and auto mechanics for
advice. Most are too afraid to employ a lawyer because of the expense.
The courts are full of novice landlords having their cases thrown out in
favor of the tenant because of some minor mistake in the paperwork, all
because they were trying to save the attorneys fee. Well, I have news
for those landlords: Bad tenants who don't pay rent can be more expensive than paying an attorney to do an eviction.
A real estate attorney experienced in landlord tenant law is an
essential element of your landlord tool-kit if you want to be successful
as a real estate investor / landlord.
If you are searching for a good landlord attorney, there are a few ways to narrow down your search.
- ask your family attorney (if you have one) for a referral.
- ask a local real estate rental office
- ask a local property management company who they recommend.
- My favorite and most reliable way to find the right eviction
attorney is to go to your local courthouse during a landlord - tenant
court session and sit there listening to the cases. Watch the
performance of the attorneys. (It may take an hour or two, but the time
spent will be well worth it.) Then just choose one of the attorneys who
auditioned for you.
If you are going to interview eviction attorneys, I suggest you ask a few key questions.
- Are evictions your specialty?
- How many do you usually do a month?
- How long does the average eviction take from beginning to end?
- How fast can we have these tenants in court?
An "on the ball" eviction attorney will have the answers to these
questions on the spot. Pay attention to # 4- because that should be an
easy one to answer if the attorney is familiar with the Landlord Tenant
I can't stress enough how important it is to develop a
relationship with a good landlord attorney. It will be an empowering and
liberating feeling to know you are prepared to do what must be done in
order to run an efficient landlording business.