What To Do About Unauthorized Tenants in My Rental?

What To Do About Unauthorized Tenants in My Rental Landlord Hank?

The challenge of how to deal with unauthorized tenants who are not on the lease for your rental property is the question for Ask Landlord Hank. Remember Hank is not an attorney and he is not offering legal advice. If you have a question for him please fill out the form below.

Dear Landlord Hank:

Do you have any recommendations for detecting whether a tenant is allowing someone to live in the unit with them?

It is stated clearly in the lease that unauthorized tenants are not allowed, but….


Dear Landlady Valerie,

Most leases include a clause concerning Right of Entry.

This clause basically says that you can inspect whenever you wish (within reason) with reasonable notice to the tenant via telephone, note on the door, etc. that you will be coming to inspect the property.

I would put such a note on the door or call the tenant and let them know that you are coming tomorrow morning to inspect.

Then you can check closets to see if there are another person’s clothing there or multiple tooth brushes, etc. You can find out fast and easy.

I’d take photos, just in case your tenant denies someone extra is living there – the more the better, so you have evidence if you have to go to court.

If you would feel more secure you could have a “burly” co-inspector with you. Good luck.


Hank Rossi


What To Do About Unauthorized Tenants in My Rental?
Landlord Hank says, “you can check closets to see if there are another person’s clothing there or multiple tooth brushes, etc. You can find out fast and easy.”

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Ask veteran landlord and property manager Hank Rossi your questions from tenant screening to leases to pets and more! He provides answers each week to landlords.

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As a child, Hank Rossi watched his father take care of the family rental-maintenance business, and sometimes became his assistant. In the mid-’90s he got into the rental business for himself. After he retired, Hank managed only his own investments for the next 10 years, but then started a real-estate brokerage business with his sister that focuses on property management and leasing. He continues to manage his portfolio in Florida and Atlanta. Visit Landlord Hank’s website: https://rentsrq.com.


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I started in real estate as a child watching my father take care of our family rentals- maintenance, tenant relations, etc , in small town Ohio. As I grew, I was occasionally Dad’s assistant. In the mid-90s I decided to get into the rental business on my own, as a sideline. In 2001, I retired from my profession and only managed my own investments, for the next 10 years. Six years ago, my sister, working as a rental agent/property manager in Sarasota, Florida convinced me to try the Florida lifestyle. I gave it a try and never looked back. A few years ago we started our own real estate brokerage. We focus on property management and leasing. I continue to manage my real estate portfolio here in Florida and Atlanta.