Squatting is when someone doesn’t own the property but has taken up residence there. A squatter may be a tenant who has lost their lease or rental agreement or someone who is not on title to the property and has no permission from the owner to live there.
If you are having problems with trespassers, you need to determine what type of trespasser they are: A squatter or a trespasser. In Oklahoma, different laws apply depending on what type of person it is.
The laws concerning eviction for squatters are quite straightforward in Oklahoma. This article will provide you with the necessary information about the laws when it comes to squatters’ rights and how to get rid of squatters in Oklahoma. Also, we will be discussing How to prevent Squatters on your rental property.
How to Prevent Squatters: Basic Approach Landlords Can Apply
Landlords are allowed to use basic measures to get their properties back. You can place signs at the front of your house, that state that you are not interested in renting it out.
If you own a vacant building, you could put up signs around it stating that the building is under construction but will soon be available for rent. This would discourage potential squatters from moving in because they know there is no vacancy on offer.
Ask your neighboring property owner to be careful and inform if any kind of suspicious activity is happening.
You can also take measures to make it difficult for them to get in by erecting fences or closing doors and windows. Simply, you’ll have to somehow get into the property and change the locks.
You can’t use violent entry if the squatters are already inside the house. This is against the law. in such a case, call the police and a friendly lawyer to stop you. If things go wrong, file for eviction to get rid of squatters. Here is an Ultimate Guide to Eviction and How to avoid squatters.
Do Not Keep Your Rental Property Vacant
Here is another option for “How to avoid squatters”.If you own a rental property, rent it out. Keeping a rental property vacant encourages squatters to trespass. Find eligible tenants who can take care of your property and pays rent on time.
OKC Home Realty Services can assist you with a better tenant screening process. They make sure to eliminate poor-quality tenants, which not only keeps away the squatters but also, increases occupancy and profitability.
Recommended: How to Minimize Rental Property Vacancy Rate?
Inspect Your Property Regularly
Regularly inspecting the property includes checking on door locks, windows, and gates. Stay aware of trespassing. To make it better you can use of security alarm system. It is combined with a security camera and connects to your phone, so when something strange is happening inside your vacant property, it will send an alarm to your phone and make sure you see what’s going inside the house live on camera.
Having home inspections regularly can help you strengthen your case if you need to file an eviction. A quality home inspection is done under the supervision of a home inspector. They look after the damage and let you know if the house is in good condition.
Pay Your Property Taxes Timely
One of the best ways to avoid squatters from occupying your vacant property is by paying property taxes in a proper manner. Squatters won’t be able to claim possession of your property if you are paying your tax regularly. Check on your property regularly.
Mostly squatters trespass your property when you don’t stay aware of your vacant property. The other thing is insuring your rental properties. Any type of damage on your property can be covered by renters insurance. It is the most affordable type of insurance.
Here is a full guide on Why should you get Renters Insurance OKC.
Keep Copies of Important Documents Safe
Keeping your important documents safe is another way to get rid of Squatters. When you need to file a report to evict a squatter, they always ask for the property deeds. This is when your key documents are beneficial.
Relevant property documents are precisely what squatters look for when entering a new place to stay. So, you need to be careful. Often, having a scanned copy of your valuable documents on your phone or mailbox will save your day.
Create a Rental Agreement with Squatters
If a landlord notices any squatters inside the property, he/she can make a deal with squatters. You necessarily don’t have to call the police or proceed with an eviction action.
Alternatively, you can present the squatters with a rental agreement. Simply, homeowners and squatters can mutually agree on the terms of the rental arrangement. This can encourage squatters to obtain the right to stay in the rental property and pay rent timely. That way you can earn some rental income. Get to know if squatters have the right to stay in a rental property and pay rent.
What If Your Tenant Let The Squatters In?
Well, it is more complicated when your tenant lets squatters in. If the tenant didn’t mention that s/he is leaving the rental property but you’re sure about it – and at the same time, you suspect someone else inside your property – this can be serious.
In such cases use safety measures to get possession routes through the court. In simple words, proceed as if your tenant was still in possession. The reason behind doing this is if you use basic measures then the tenant will come back. This will prove you wrong.
If you don’t file for the possession and the tenants come back, you have to let him stay even if the rent is due. So filing for possession will be the best option.
Note: Things That Need to Be Included in 5 Day Notice to Quit Oklahoma
Guide To Oklahoma Squatters Rights
Oklahoma doesn’t have different laws mentioned in the Landlord-Tenant Act for the eviction of the squatters. If the squatters protest to leave the property through basic methods, the owner must file a legal eviction to get rid of the Squatters. You might wonder, What to do after evicting a tenant?
However, there is a provision in Oklahoma law for property owners with a legal disability i.e they are underage, imprisoned, or legally incompetent. They have two years after their disability is lifted to claim their properties that are occupied by the squatters.
This means, that while a landlord is legally disabled, no adverse possession claim can be issued. Get to know more about Oklahoma Squatters Rights.
How OKC Home Realty Services Can Help?
If you are a property owner and want to file the eviction yourself, it can be tough. Think twice. The legal adviser at court will be assisting the tenant – looking for any technicality to get your case thrown out of court. With the right team of professionals on your side, it is simple than you think. For more information on preventing squatters from occupying your property, contact OKC Home Realty Services today!
Property Management OKC used to perform eviction processes on behalf of the clients. That has changed since the beginning of the pandemic. In such a case, we can give you a rundown of the process that our team and the attorney go through when filing an eviction to remove squatters.
Give us a call at 14052325800. Let us guide you with the Eviction Process and other Real Estate and Property Management queries.
FAQs on How to Get Rid of Squatters in Oklahoma
How do you stop squatters?
Tips for Protecting Yourself from Squatters in Oklahoma;
Secure all entrances. Post “No Trespassing” signs, especially if your property is vacant. If you are sure about squatters already living in your rental unit, file them a formal eviction notice as soon as possible. Hire professional legal services.
Can you lock squatters out?
Squatters can be evicted, but lawfully. If you are left with a situation where evicting squatters is your only option, find a legal professional in your area to find out what rights they have and what rules you need to follow.
Why is it hard to get rid of squatters?
Actually, evicting a squatter is as difficult as evicting a traditional tenant. Many squatters try to gain tenant rights. This creates more difficulties in the eviction process. It can also lengthen the already long eviction process.
Can police remove squatters?
The police can remove trespassers immediately. However, they can’t remove squatters. Getting rid of squatters takes you to file a report first. Ask the police if they will report the squatters to the property owner. If they won’t, then you need to consult the owner to get rid of them.
How to keep squatters out?
Once you get a clue that there’s a squatter living on your property, it’s essential to consult with state and local laws. Removing squatters by force is dangerous and may result in criminal charges against you. For that, you should avoid: Locking them out by installing additional locks or changing the locks. You need to file a report first and then the local police will guide you.
How to avoid squatters on a Property?
Property owners are allowed to use basic measures to get their properties back. You can place signs at the front of your house, that state that you are not interested in renting it out. Ask your neighboring property owner to be careful and inform if any kind of suspicious activity is happening.