Rent payments delays are, unfortunately, a fairly common problem that Landlords face, even in Cyprus. It is rarely possible to solve this problem peacefully, with a minimum expenditure of nerves and efforts. But what should the owner of the rented real estate do to protect their interests? Let's try to figure it out.
The first symptom is delays in payments
Finding a respectable Tenant who would not only keep your property in perfect order, but also pay rent on a monthly basis and on time is not so easy. As a rule, if this is not an exceptional case related to the temporary insolvency of the tenant, it all starts with delays.
What should I do?
The first thing to do is to meet and talk. The tenant must understand the position of the owner - the property is rented in order to receive income. If the debt is repaid in the near future, the conflict can be considered settled.
If the debt is unpaid and grows?
Such behavior of the Tenant is not uncommon. He is polite and courteous, promising to pay off the debt, citing temporary financial difficulties. He continues to use real estate, and, in addition, accumulates debts on utility bills.
In this case, try again to resolve the conflict peacefully. For this, it is better to hold another personal meeting. Since live communication can do more than phone calls and correspondence. At the meeting, try again to patiently listen to all the arguments of the Tenant about the reason for the delay in payments and the proposed solutions. Discuss the possibility of payment in installments, a discount on rent for several months, or try to find another compromise by setting a reasonable time frame.
What to do next?
If a peaceful discussion has not led to anything, and the debt continues to accumulate, then you should proceed to the next step - termination of the Housing Lease on the initiative of the Landlord.
The condition for termination of the Lease Agreement must be agreed in advance and specific circumstances under which the Landlord has the right to unilaterally terminate the contract before the date of its expiration must be specified. For example, delay in payment for a certain period or inappropriate treatment of living space, etc.
Also, the Landlord can send the Tenant a written notice of termination of the current lease agreement for an apartment or house. If the Tenant ignores this notice, within the prescribed period or 30 days (if the period was not prescribed in advance), then the homeowner has the right to appeal to the court.
The tenant does not pay and does not move out of your home in Cyprus
The tenant does not pay or pays in too small installments that do not cover the debts. In addition, they do not agree to move out of the apartment or house, citing his difficult financial situation.
What to do in this case?
Obviously, you have to go to court. But, here it should be borne in mind that legal proceedings of this kind in Cyprus can last for quite a long time.
The tenant did not pay and moved out of your property in Cyprus
This is… not the worst option. The Landlord has not received rent or debt, but the home is free and you can go in search of a new tenant, taking into account all aspects when concluding a new lease. It is possible to collect a debt from an unscrupulous former Tenant only through a court.
The tenant did not pay, changed the lock, left, but left his things.
Yes, it happens in Cyprus.
The motivation of a former Tenant can vary. Perhaps they went nowhere, and spend their night with relatives or friends. They have no place to stay, and no place to leave their things. In this case, you should call the police, and only in their presence open the door and make a list of the things left. Further, the Landlord should contact the unscrupulous Tenant with a request to pick up their belongings as soon as possible. It is also advisable to have a clause in the lease agreement for an apartment or house, according to which the Lessee is obliged to return the home to the owner in its original condition, taking into account wear and tear.
The Homeowner must ensure the safety of the Tenant's property, otherwise the former Tenant may recover damages. Therefore, you must store their things until the moment when the Tenant picks them up.
How to evict the Tenant forcibly, but according to the law of Cyprus
Even quite back, the eviction of a bad Tenant could take years.
The law, which was passed in 1983, protected the rights of Tenants, but took into account the rights of property Owners much less. In July 2019, the Cyprus Parliament made a decision to eliminate this injustice, and to amend the existing bill, which was done. Amendment 3 to the 1983 law entered into force on January 1, 2020.
In particular, it was decided that the Landlord has the right to initiate a compulsory eviction procedure for the Tenant if the payment is delayed by 21 days.
After the expiration of the delay (21 days), the Landlord must notify the Tenant in writing about the start of the eviction procedure. The lessee has the right to pay off the debt within 14 days. If he does not do this, then upon the expiration of this period, the debtor is forcibly evicted.
Tips for Landlords
How to maximally protect yourself and your property from bad Tenants?
First, you should look for Tenants among your circle of acquaintances or on a recommendation for long-term rentals.
Second, is to think over a system of security payments.
The rent should not be overstated. On the contrary, you can offer to rent real estate at a discount of 10-15%, but due to the low cost, indicate in the Agreement security payments in the form of a deposit for the last month and a security deposit in the amount of one monthly payment. Thus, the Landlord will receive a 2-month guarantee for late payments. In this case, the Agreement should be added with a clause that the security deposit and payment of the last month of the lease can be used to pay off the debt accumulated by the Lessee.
Third, do not forget to put all utility payments in the name of the Tenant. Thus the homeowner will be sure about liability for payments for utilities (water, electricity, garbage). And also the Homeowner should carefully keep all documents on payment for rent.
A detailed description of all rights in the Cyprus Property Lease Agreement may subsequently play an important role for both the Landlord and the Tenant.
Thinking about renting out your apartment, house or villa in Cyprus? Contact the DOM real estate agency. The company's specialists will help you find the ideal tenant, as well as help you conclude the correct lease agreement.
- What does it mean long-term rent in Cyprus? (link)
- Tenancy agreement in Cyprus (link)
- The extension of protection of tenants from evictions was approved (link)
- TOP-8 mistakes to avoid when renting out an apartment or house in Cyprus (link)
- 7 reasons why you need a real estate agent in Cyprus (link)
- 7 types of landlords in Cyprus. How to get along with each of them? (link)
- Seven types of tenants in Cyprus. Whom will you meet on the doorstep of your apartment? (link)