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Dear Lawyer, A section 8 tenant does not pay her portion of rent and has the property damaged, what can I do ?

Detroit, MI |

I have a section 8 tenant in my investment property in Detroit. The tenant likes to live in the property, however the rent is more than that pay by the section 8, therefore the renting condition is that the tenant would pay the balance. The payment was fine at the beginning, yet about a year now the tenant has not paid full amount, especially last 7 month. According to our Property management agent, as the tenant's condition has changed, the section 8 has reduced the support money, At the same time, the tenant also stops pay the balance which is about $300 a month. When we suggest to the agent to evict the tenant due to breaching the contract, the property get damaged .
Please kindly advise a solution to resolve this issue

Thanks and Best Regards

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Attorney answers 2

Best Answer

Hopefully your property management team has taken the appropriate steps to provide for a refund of all of the damages in the home.

You're going to have to evict the tenant, and sue for damages. Your damages are going to consist of any back rent that the tenant has not paid, plus damages to the property. However, given that the tenant is indigent, you're not likely going to see any money from the judgment, outside of the security deposit you received upon move-in.

For section 8 tenants I demand the maximum security deposit possible, a month and 1/2 nonrefundable, governed by State law.

William Joseph Bieke Jr.

William Joseph Bieke Jr.


I should add. If you can prove that the destruction of the property was intentional, you may be able to present that evidence to the City's proescutor's office and press charges against the tenant. For whatever reason, the City does take destruction of property and destruction of a dwelling unit very seriously. If you are successful in getting the City to press charges, you will likely be able to collect your damages via restitution payments made to the probation department. You're biggest hurdle here is going to be proving that the tenant was the one that did the damage, without any actual witnesses.


Evict and sue for propety damage and back rent.

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