“Of Course the Answer is Yes but How Would You Respond?”

“Of Course the Answer is Yes but How Would You Respond?”



Hello Joe, A while back my son and I came in to talk to you. You were very helpful and we want to seek your advice about a problem with one of our tenants, here is the question. A tenant moved in the house in January and in July she had two dogs living in the garage without written approval for one dog, can we evict her? These dogs are doing their business in the garage and the place is a mess and stinks.


All of us get asked questions that are not necessarily in the field that we do business, just like the one above. Even though I know the answer I have recommended that they speak to an attorney. I am a mortgage broker and I want to give advice in the field that I know like breathing.


What advice would you have given?


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Joe Petrowsky, NMLS #6869

Right Trac Financial Group, Inc. NMLS #2709

110 Main St.

Manchester, Ct. 06042

Office: 860 647-7701 x116

Fax: 860 647-8940

Cell: 860 836-9294

Email: joe@righttracfg.com



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Comment balloon 24 commentsJoe Petrowsky • January 29 2016 01:09PM


Yes, I completely agree.  I often get asked how I would handle this situation or that situation, and while part of me wants to respond, I have to be cautious and say, this is something they should seek legal advice on...

Posted by Shuchi Agrawal, Serving Dallas / Ft. Worth (Kanam Realty Group/Kanam Commercial) over 3 years ago

I would have told them they could most likely evict her, but this is best handled by an attorney, just as you did, Joe.

Posted by Gabe Sanders, Stuart Florida Real Estate (Real Estate of Florida specializing in Martin County Residential Homes, Condos and Land Sales) over 3 years ago

Oh yes, it's best not avoid giving advice in another field, esp legal advice.

Posted by Women of Westchester Working Together, Women helping Women get ahead (Women of Westchester Working Together) over 3 years ago

Yes Joe. Many times we are asked questions that are out of our field, and usually recommend they speak with their attorney.

Posted by Lawrence "Larry" & Sheila Agranoff. Cell: 631-805-4400, Long Island Home and Condo Specialists (The Top Team @ Charles Rutenberg Realty 255 Executive Dr, Plainview NY 11803) over 3 years ago

Legal questions require the advice of an attorney.  Depending on what the contract says it may be a slam dunk, however I would still contact an attorney and start the eviction process

Posted by James Dray, Exceptional Agents, Outstanding Results (Fathom Realty) over 3 years ago

Good Morning Joe:

Very smart answer. There are questions that we know answers to due to our own personal experience but if it is outside of our expertise, it is better to refer them to the experts.

Posted by Maria Gilda Racelis, Home Ownership is w/in Reach. We Make it Happen! (Home Buyers Realty, LLC-Manchester, Bolton. Vernon,Ellington) over 3 years ago

Seek the advice of an attorney. The eviction process can be tricky and not all judges see it the same!

Posted by Wayne Martin, Real Estate Broker - Retired (Wayne M Martin) over 3 years ago

HI Joe.  I explain that the eviction process is difficult and they need an attorney.

Posted by Conrad Allen, Webster, Ma, Realtor (Re/Max Professional Associates) over 3 years ago

That was a perfect answer, and the same one I would give.

This is one of the times that being a landlord can be a pain in the butt.

Posted by Kat Palmiotti, The House Kat (Grand Lux Realty, Monroe NY, 914-419-0270, kat@thehousekat.com) over 3 years ago

You gave good advice. I always suggest that they call an attorney when I receive such calls. 

Posted by Gita Bantwal, REALTOR,ABR,CRS,SRES,GRI - Bucks County & Philadel (RE/MAX Centre Realtors) over 3 years ago

Good morning Joe,

You gave the right advice.

They were looking for a freebie!

Make yourself an astonishing day.

Posted by Raymond E. Camp, Licensed Real Estate Salesperson Greater Rochester (Howard Hanna Real Estate Services) over 3 years ago

Good morning Joe Petrowsky ,

You handles that answer beautifully! Never try and be an expert in a field you don't know..calling an attorney is the best route to go to understand the eviction process.

Posted by Dorie Dillard CRS GRI ABR, Serving Buyers & Sellers in NW Austin Real Estate (Coldwell Banker United Realtors® ~ 512.750.6899) over 3 years ago

Refer them to an attorney even though you know the answer.

Posted by Roger D. Mucci, Lets shake things up at your home today! (Shaken...with a Twist 216.633.2092) over 3 years ago

So many people fall into this trap and start to advise when they shouldn't.  Call their attorney

Posted by Ed Silva, Central CT Real Estate Broker Serving all equally (RE/MAX Professionals, CT 203-206-0754 ) over 3 years ago

Good morning Joe. I think you gave the perfect advice. No need to go any further.

Posted by Sheila Anderson, The Real Estate Whisperer Who Listens 732-715-1133 (Referral Group Incorporated) over 3 years ago

Joe, since I do not do property management, would definitely say contact an attorney. 

Posted by Joan Cox, Denver Real Estate - Selling One Home at a Time (House to Home, Inc. - Denver Real Estate - 720-231-6373) over 3 years ago

Right answer. Then a customer says. I know you aren't an attorney but I just want to know what you would do in this situation. Since most people know I have a lot of rental property I usually tell a story from the past with a disclaimer. I always say to consult an attorney.

Posted by Debbie Reynolds, Your Dedicated Clarksville TN Real Estate Agent (Platinum Properties) over 3 years ago

OK Joe Petrowsky Everybody else is seeing this as a legal issue, but I see it as a property management issue. The REAL question is "do you want to keep these tenants?"

Bill Roberts

Posted by Bill Roberts, "Baby Boomer" Retirement Planner (Brooks and Dunphy Real Estate) over 3 years ago

As long as I give an answer that tells them I am not an expert in eviction law, I can certainly give them as much information as I am currently aware of their situation and how to handle it.

Posted by Nicole Doty - Gilbert Real Estate Expert, Broker/Owner of Zion Realty ZionRealtyAZ.com (Zion Realty) over 3 years ago

I would have suggested that they contact a local attorney to begin eviction proceedings. And if they didn't know a good attorney, I'd certainly have given them a few recommendations.

Posted by Nina Hollander, Your Charlotte/Ballantyne/Waxhaw/Fort Mill Realtor (Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage ) over 3 years ago

If it's not in the lease, best to consult with an attorney. There are local ordinances too that can protect a landlord. I once had an investor ask me what to do about a tenant keeping their rabbit in the house. It wasn't just a rabbit in the cage. It was a rabbit that had full access to the entire house and that tenant was gone often. The odor was horrible!

Posted by Patricia Feager, MBA, CRS, GRI,MRP, Selling Homes Changing Lives (DFW FINE PROPERTIES) over 3 years ago

I am right there with you.  We cannot offer legal advice as Realtors or we could lose our license.  You are in the same boat.  

Posted by Belinda Spillman, Colorado Living! (Aspen Lane Real Estate Colorful Colorado) over 3 years ago


I would also advise the landlord to get an attorney.

Good luck and success.

Lou Ludwig

Posted by Lou Ludwig, Designations Earned CRB, CRS, CIPS, GRI, SRES, TRC (Ludwig & Associates) over 3 years ago

This is very good advice. In our area, the requirements for evictions are very strict.

Posted by Roy Kelley (Realty Group Referrals) over 3 years ago