7 tips for a successful eviction order

It’s never nice to evict a tenant, but sometimes it is necessary. Follow these 7 tips to ensure a smooth process for you both.


Have you reached the end of your tether with a troublesome tenant? Or has your tenant ignored your notice to terminate the lease contract due to a breach on their part? Have they stopped paying rent or utilities? Whatever your reason for eviction, follow these 7 tips to ensure a successful eviction order.

  1. Engage a specialist. Evictions are technical and the courts are quick to throw a matter out if it fails to comply in any legal or technical manner. That means a waste of time and money, and will only add to  your frustration. Use the services of an attorney who is experienced with evictions and will get it right first time.
  2. Don’t try to evict the tenant yourself. This is illegal and can set the whole eviction back by months, wasting a lot of money. You may legitimately feel you are being exploited and have lost control of your property. It can be very tempting to try to find ways to get rid of the illegal tenant yourself. Resist the temptation. You could find yourself on the wrong side of the law. 
  3. Likewise, don’t cut off electricity, water or other utilities. The illegal occupant may have run up a huge bill, leaving you financially exposed. You may feel justified in disconnecting the services and you may hope it will force the occupants to leave. But this is illegal and can severely damage your case.
  4. Don’t harass the tenant. Constant calls or emails to the tenant or visiting the property in person is a counterproductive strategy because the tenant could obtain an interim protection order against you for harassment. Then you’d have two problems to deal with rather than one and your reputation could be damaged.
  5. Have faith in the process. Allow the relevant legislation to work in your favour. Trust the system, even if it seems unfair. If you follow correct procedure, the law will help you, and your eviction will be successful.
  6. Consider negotiating. An eviction application is the formal way forward, but this should be combined with an attempt to negotiate the illegal occupant’s exit. Let your attorney do this. Don’t attempt it yourself. Very often there are ways to convince an illegal occupant to leave rather than face litigation. Quite often they listen to reason and agree to vacate before you spend more time and money.
  7. Be patient. One of the hardest aspects of the eviction process is the need for patience. You have to wait for the process to follow its course. Evictions are not simple, and they take time. A good eviction attorney will ensure it takes as little time as possible. You just need to hang in there.

Need a good eviction attorney?

SD Law is a Cape Town law firm with expertise in property matters including rental housing, eviction and conveyancing. We can help you resolve your eviction case swiftly and legally. Give eviction attorney Simon Dippenaar a call or send a WhatsApp to 086 099 5146. You can also email Simon at sdippenaar@sdlaw.co.za.

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The information on this website is provided to assist the reader with a general understanding of the law. While we believe the information to be factually accurate, and have taken care in our preparation of these pages, these articles cannot and do not take individual circumstances into account and are not a substitute for personal legal advice. If you have a legal matter that concerns you, please consult a qualified attorney. Simon Dippenaar & Associates takes no responsibility for any action you may take as a result of reading the information contained herein (or the consequences thereof), in the absence of professional legal advice.