Author: Larry Bellack, EVP of Possession Partner – May 4 , 2022
Automating Evictions – It has to be a thing.
Given a choice, onsite team members won’t rush to initiate the eviction process on their own. Balancing the business side and the personal relationships can be challenge. Residents may get some additional days to pay, sometimes just so the associate doesn’t look like the bad guy. Onsite teams should focus on finding renters new homes and creating the best living experience possible. Facilitating a process that removes a resident from their homes simply isn’t in their DNA.
Regardless of the reason, delays in the eviction process are
extremely costly to multifamily operators. With each day that passes, debt accumulates and the likelihood of revenue recovery diminishes.
So I find myself asking “why aren’t evictions automated? Why does the process rely on associates who are too busy to effectively stay on top of delinquency and disinclined to engage in evictions in the first place?”
With technology booming in multifamily, there is zero reason that everything needed to initiate the eviction process can’t be preloaded and stored for each resident. Our teams should be empowered to deploy an eviction automatically after delinquency occurs. Property teams shouldn’t have to scramble to produce notice verification, rent ledgers and lease agreements each time a resident misses a rent payment.
Those documents must live in an automated system until delinquency triggers the eviction process. If we automate the evictions process, there are three possible scenarios – and trust me, all three scenarios are far better than any belated eviction process.
Automating the leasing process also stops those uncomfortable conversations for onsite team members. When residents receive an eviction notice, they often end up at the leasing office, asking, “Why couldn’t you just give me a few more days?” With automation in place, associates can simply respond, “Sorry, but our system handles late payments automatically.”
Automations drive consistency, and consistency is key in evictions. Inconsistency leaves operators exposed to discrimination accusations. Automating the evictions process removes the potential for bias or human error that can set operators up for troubles ahead. Notices are automated, as is distribution of filing documentation to legal counsel, and the process is managed behind the scenes.
Eviction management services work directly with residents and legal counsel to expedite filings, thus removing the burden from onsite teams, who can then focus on prospects, the resident experience, and growing NOI. success in evictions is realized when the process is properly addressed by those most trained to handle the challenges, and not when it’s just another item on a to-do list.