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When screening a perspective tenant most property managers are not thinking that they may have to evict the client – which is an unpleasant and costly experience for all parties involved.

Shirley Pikus of Pikus Real Estate and Property Management said making a good decision and screening appropriately at the outset will minimize the possibility of eviction.

Incenting the tenant with payment reductions for early payment will encourage tenants to pay on time. Another method is to remove "grace periods" and add a late fee that will incent the tenant to make the payment.  Terms for payment must be firm and in writing.  Do NOT make a lot of accommodations for accepting late payments, as this can become the expectation of the tenant and may not be defensible in court. Once a tenant has gotten a full pay cycle behind, it is increasingly difficult for them to catch up.  Don't let them put themselves in this position. 

If a tenant's payment will be late, ask that they communicate such as early as possible.  If you do not receive payment or payment arrangements, it is necessary to post a 3 Day Notice per state of Ohio law. Be careful accepting partial payments and get terms for modification in writing.   If there is no communication by the 10th of the month, a three-day notice is served to the tenant and all occupants, and may be attached to the tenant's door or served by Certified Mail Delivery.  If you are unable to reach acceptable terms with the tenant, at the end of the third business day, the file may be referred to an attorney for proper action with the appropriate court.  Be sure to contact your attorney for the appropriate action for your transaction. 

Establish a good working relationship with your attorney.  Share your leasing documents so that he/she can be sure that you are properly protected in your contract.  You will want to be sure that the chosen attorney specializes in Real Estate and is familiar with the eviction process.  Pikus discovered her attorney while sitting in the courtroom and watching his interaction with the judge/magistrate.  "If you know an attorney who is well versed in Landlord / Tenant law the processing of your eviction will be much easier and less frustrating."

As a property owner, you will need to provide the attorney with clear documentation regarding your tenants' payment history, application, and lease.  Any communications with the tenant should be documented in writing.  Emails and texts can be very helpful information. If everything is well documented, the judge will be able to make an expedient and decisive decision to bring the matter to closure.  Eviction dates will generally be set if the documentation for non-payment is clear and warranted. 

Pikus tries to maintain a good relationship with all her tenants by staying in contact.  Keep accurate and updated records for employers, emergency contacts and driver's license.  Always document any changes to phone numbers and emails.  This is a good practice for not only evictions, but for emergency situations. 

The eviction process is costly for all parties. The owner will experience loss of rents, the cost of the turn over to get the property ready for market,and the legal fees and court filing fees, utilities expense.Some of these costs may be recoverable from the tenant in the future. 

This is by far, the most difficult task of property management.  As a property manager, Pikus represents the property owners' best interest, but no one wins in this process.  Pikus said, "Making great choices in the beginning of the relationship with the tenant is preferable.  It's much easier to tell a tenant that you cannot qualify them for a property, than to watch their personal items be moved to the curb."

Contact Shirley Pikus at Pikus Real Estate and Property Management to manage your property.




When a seller places a For Sale sign in their yard, the owner is looking for the right buyer.  The same is true when a property manager hangs a For Rent sign outside a property when looking for a new tenant.

Shirley Pikus of Pikus Real Estate and Property Management said she will wait for the right tenant. She said getting the wrong tenant is the most expensive, time consuming and costly issue that can happen. Patience is the key to finding the right person.

Pikus knows this from her decade of experience in real estate and property management in addition to her 13 years experience as a mortgage lender. She can tell from a credit check if the candidate is pre-qualified. Pikus is able to pick out trends in a clients background that could indicate a potential issue but is willing to work with clients whom she sees credit that is rebounding and may make excellent tenants. The ultimate goal is to get the client to stay and minimize the turnover.

Pikus Real Estate and Property Management offer many tenant services through The tenant portal offers the client the ability to pay online, make maintenance requests and view lease agreements and other related property documents. Routine maintenance issues can be sent through the online portal, but emergency issues are welcome by phone, text or email.

Satisfied clients are the key to happy clients. Pikus achieves this by treating each client tenant the same – no matter their profession, income or social background. Pikus uses her real estate and lending experience to find the perfect client.

"I get a feeling at the showing the way a client carries themselves, sometimes even looking inside their car to see how well it is kept."  A good credit score and a clean car are good indicators the house will be well kept and clean.

The other area that sets Pikus apart from competitors is getting to know her tenants on a personal level – their names, kids names and interests. "It's important to know your tenant and understand their specific  needs and challenges, while helping them understand that their obligation is to follow lease and submit timely payments. A property manager ultimately represents the interest of the owner of the property and needs to execute and follow that agreement."