-- This is Part 2 of a 2 Part Series --

3. Confirm your insurance is in order – First, if the lease requires the tenant to provide a certificate of insurance, confirm it is up to date and, if it isn’t, take action. Next, make sure you are named as an “additional insured” and have landlord friendly insurance provisions in the lease.  Finally, consider adding a provision to your lease requiring your tenant to have renter’s insurance or a liability policy to cover the tenant’s pit bull. Talk with your insurance agent to confirm your liability insurance policy sufficiently covers you for a tenant’s negligent acts on your property. If you have a property manager, double check their policy as well.

4. Consider forming an LLC for asset protection - Savvy landlords understand that the rental business is risky. The most conservative and risk averse clients will form a separate LLC for each rental property owned.  Assuming you keep your records separate and successfully avoid those “piercing the corporate veil” arguments, one purpose of a limited liability company is to limit your exposure to the value of the assets owned by the LLC. The cost of forming and maintaining the LLC, may pale in comparison to the personal costs you may suffer when an aggressive Plaintiff’s attorney goes after all your assets as a result of that catastrophic personal injury which occurred in your backyard.

5. Hire an attorney to file the unlawful detainer action -Landlords frequently try to save money and file the eviction action themselves. If you are even considering doing it yourself, please consult an attorney. The unlawful detainer statutes are tedious, complex, and in the tenant’s favor. What appears like a trivial mistake, may unwind your entire case and cost you dearly. The foundation of the unlawful detainer case is the Three Day Notice. Therefore, hire your attorney to draft it or at the very least to review it, as it may end up saving you thousands of dollars.

Rogers, Sheffield & Campbell routinely handles landlord-tenant disputes and represents landlords almost exclusively. Our Real Estate Law team counsels real estate owners to be proactive rather than reactive. Take action and contact us today at (805) 963-9721 to resolve your issue.

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Rogers, Sheffield & Campbell, LLP primarily serves individuals, families and businesses up and down California's Central Coast and North Los Angeles County, including many Santa Barbara, San Luis Obispo, and Ventura County communities.

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