Behind Tenant Evictions: Landlord /Tenant Relationships

It appears that there is a cordial relationship between landlords and tenants, especially on the day that a lease agreement (the agreement that gives rise to a landlord and tenant relationship) is signed by both parties. During this critical moment, which involves a security deposit paid upfront, and the keys handed to the tenant – it is a typical win-win negotiation between both parties. 

As long as the tenant pays rent on time, the landlord attends promptly to maintenance issues, and both abide by the lease agreement, this cordial relationship continues. 

This looks like a perfect situation where every tenant or landlord would like to be, but circumstances may sometimes dismantle this cordial relationship to bitterness. This bitterness could come from the tenant not being able to afford rent or refusing to pay and not being willing to leave the landlord’s property. 

When negotiation between the tenant and the landlord fails and the tenant is not willing to vacate the landlord’s property, the landlord has no choice but to seek the involvement of a third party — the law and the eviction court — for a legal verdict to force the tenant out of the property. 

  • If preventing eviction, practice budgeting. 
    • Budgeting is a tool that helps monitor spending not to exceed income. 
    • When budgeting, be sure to make rent a spending priority. 
  • If facing eviction, negotiate. 
    • Negotiate with the landlord to pay the rent in increments to get current. 
    • Eviction can affect your credit report and prevent leasing at a new property.
  • If evicted, be resilient. 
    • Try not to be bitter or spiteful with your landlord and keep a positive attitude.
    • Come up with an immediate rescue plan – talk to your spouse and children, and develop an exit strategy that works best for everyone. 
    • Talk to friends and relatives to get emotional support, and temporary accommodation if needed. 

The University of Maryland Extension offers free community classes on budgeting to tenants in order to prevent evictions. Visit https://extension.umd.edu/resources/publications/Money for more information on budgeting and financial management.

Blog contributed by Michael Elonge, senior agent in Family & Consumer Sciences with the University of Maryland Extension, Baltimore City.

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