Problematic Tenants: How They Can Ruin Your Rental Properties

Apartments ready for rent

Rental properties are becoming the norm during the pandemic, primarily because home prices are rising. However, becoming a landlord is no easy task. It requires a lot of patience, especially concerning your tenants.

As a landlord, you know that one of the essential elements of your success is finding and keeping good tenants. But what happens when you end up with a tenant who is, for lack of a better word, problematic? Here’s how troublesome tenants can ruin your rental properties—and what you can do to protect yourself.

Problematic Tenants in Your Property

No matter how well you screen your tenants, there’s always a chance that you’ll end up with a problematic tenant. And while difficult tenants might not seem like a big deal at first, they can do a lot of damage to your rental properties—damage that will cost you time and money. Here are just a few ways problematic tenants can ruin your rental properties:

Not Paying Rent

One of the most obvious ways problematic tenants can ruin your rental properties is by not paying their rent on time—or by not paying their rent at all. This can significantly strain your cash flow and make it challenging to keep up with maintenance and repairs on the property. If you have problem tenants who are consistently late on their rent payments, it’s vital to take action quickly. Here are some ways you can do that.

Notifying Them and Payment Plans

One option is to notify the tenants of their late rent and establish a payment plan. This will allow them to catch up on their payments while also ensuring that you receive the money owed to them.

Digital Payments

Sometimes, tenants forget to pay their rent or make payments on time. Consider offering digital payment options, such as through an online platform like Venmo or PayPal, to make it easier for tenants to pay their rent on time.

Late Fees

If a tenant is consistently late on their rent payments, consider implementing late fees to incentivize timely payments. This can also help offset any loss of income from late rent payments.

Broken glass caused by tenant

Property Damage

Another way problematic tenants can ruin your rental properties is by not taking care of them. This can include everything from leaving garbage around the property to damaging the walls or fixtures. Not only does this make it more difficult (and expensive) to keep the property in good condition, but it also makes it less attractive to potential future tenants. If you have a tenant who’s not taking care of the property, it’s essential to talk to them about the issue and see if there’s anything you can do to help them improve their behavior; if not, then it might be time to start looking for a new tenant.


Problematic tenants can also cause disturbances at your rental properties, whether by having loud parties, playing music loudly at all hours of the night, or constantly arguing with their roommates/neighbors. This can be highly disruptive for you and your other tenants and damage the property (e.g., if someone breaks a window during a fight). If you have a tenant causing disturbances, it’s essential to talk to them about the issue and see if there’s anything you can do to help resolve it; if not, you may need to consider terminating their lease agreement.


Lastly, there are what people in the industry call ‘travellers.’ These travellers set up using trailers or camp gear near or on your property and then refuse to leave. This can not only damage the property, but it can also be a safety concern for you, your tenants, and anyone else visiting the property. Thankfully, there are ways you can deal with them without putting yourself in danger.

Eviction Services

One of the best ways to do this is by hiring eviction services to help you out. Some experienced traveler eviction services can legally and safely remove travelers from your property. You can set up a contract or call them in as needed.

Legal Action

In some cases, you may need to take legal action against the travellers if they refuse to leave or cause damage to your property. Therefore, it’s essential to consult with a lawyer before taking any steps in this direction and document any incidents.

As a business owner or entrepreneur, knowing how problematic tenants can ruin your rental properties is essential. Taking steps to screen tenants carefully and taking action quickly if problems arise can protect you from the financial and logistical headaches that problematic tenants can cause.


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