What to do if my garage was turned into a studio without a permit and the tenant won’t pay or leave?

The tenant living in the converted garage won’t pay or leave. We are afraid to do anything because the garage is converted without a permit. How can we remove the tenant from the property?

Asked on July 17, 2012 under Real Estate Law, California


M.T.G., Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 8 years ago | Contributor

You are stuck between a rock and a hard place here and I would suggest that you speak with ana ttorney in your area on the matter asap.  You can not forcibly get  the tenant out.  You are going to have to evict.  And expect that they will allege an illegal apartment and ask not to pay you a dime (but check local law becuase many states do not support non payment in that situation unless it is a multiple dewelling) and expect that the city and county are going to come out and inspect.  Best to get things cleared up now.  Good luck.

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although AttorneyPages.com has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.