Landlords ask: “When can I change the locks?”.
Jennifer J.: “Hi. My name is Jennifer Johnson and I’m a partner here at Zanck, Coen, Wright & Saladin. I’ve been with the firm since 2005. I concentrate my area of practice in landlord/tenant law, real estate, general civil litigation, construction litigation, and I also handle some traffic offenses.
Another question that I get very frequently from landlords is, “When can I change the locks?” It’s an easy question if your tenant has completely vacated the property after a notice has been given or after a suit’s been filed or after we get an order from the court for a day that they have to be out of the property.
Typically, if that happens, we can advise you that you can change the locks fairly quickly. However, if there’s any question regarding any property being left behind, things like that, then it becomes a little bit more complicated and we typically see the eviction process through to the end, which involves getting the sheriff onto the property, having them involved.
So it does depend. It depends on the type of tenant that you’re dealing with, if it’s one that knows the system. And it also depends on the circumstances of the breach of the lease. If it’s nonpayment of rent, or if it’s just wanting to terminate the lease and move on from the property, and then going to a new tenant or maybe be done with renting the property altogether.
So changing the locks, finalizing the eviction process, that’s all going to be depending on the situation which is at hand.”
Jennifer L. Johnson can be reached at (815) 459-8800 ext 652 and [email protected]
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