How do I legally evict a squatter?

UPDATED: Jun 9, 2011

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How do I legally evict a squatter?

I have a friend that’s giving me their old property because the taxes are too high for them and they don’t have time to rent out or check on the property. She did let me know that squatters are living in the house and I need to evict them (they’ve been there 2 years). I already have a paying tenant lined up for the property once I fix it up. Do I have to legally evict them as if they was tenants or can I have some one clean the house out for me?

Asked on June 9, 2011 under Real Estate Law, Michigan


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 11 years ago | Contributor

Unfortunately, "self-help" evictions or hiring someone else to do it for you is NEVER legal. You have to go through the courts and evict them using the legal process. Fortunately, this is not particularly expensive or difficult, though it will take a few weeks, or possibly even a few months (depending on how busy your courts are, whether the squatters have and raise any defenses, etc.). The best way to deal with this is to hire a landlord-tenant attorney to evict the squatters for you; provide the attorney all the information you have about the property, your acquisition thereof, and let the lawyer do it for you. You don't want to miss a step or do something wrong, since that would force you to start all over. Good luck.

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