Do you have an old eviction haunting you, and you can't seem to find a decent home to live in? The tenant-landlord relationship is an important one, one where both sides of the relationship need to feel comfortable that the relationship wont be violated or taken advantage of.
When you apply for a home, the landlord will likely look into past court records (which are accessible to everyone in the State of Wisconsin, on the Wisconsin Court Systems website). If a landlord or property manager sees past judgments on your record, they may see you as a risk and assume you do not have paying your living expenses as a top priority; and therefore decide not to rent to you.
Each landlord will have a different tolerance to the eviction issue, varying between strict and lenient and some may not allow any tenants with known evictions on their records. However, you may find that some (Strong Blocks included) will allow you to rent from them once you have satisfied or paid off your past judgments in full.
If you'd like to do learn how to pay off unsatisfied judgments, keep reading (and FYI it DOESN'T involve facing your old landlord).
How to pay off past eviction judgments IN Milwaukee:
1. Visit the courthouse
Ask to find out what is listed on the court records under your name.
2. Pay the judgment balance at the courthouse
Once you know how much you owe, pay it off or save your money up and come back to pay the court house directly - Paying at the court house will be the fastest method to getting your judgment to reflect as paid in full.
3. Get a proof of payment receipt
Ask the court house employee to give you a receipt for your payment, make sure it has your name, case number, and the amount you paid listed. This is important in case there are any errors; to prove you made your payment.
4. Check to see if your payment has cleared
Wait a few days and go online to the Wisconsin Court Systems website to see if your payment has been reflected. Keep checking every few days until it has cleared. If it doesn't clear, then go back to the court house and bring your receipt.
If you have been rejected for an apartment or home; reach back out to the landlord whom you were rejected by and see if they would be willing to reconsider your application now that your judgment is satisfied.
If you are from outside of Milwaukee County, you may have to take different actions and this method may not apply to you. But you should still consider visiting your local court house as your first step in settling unpaid eviction judgments; ask around until you find the right person who can explain your county's processes.
As a disclaimer, this is not legal advice. Please seek an attorney if you have any questions or complications.
Looking to own a home, but can't quite qualify for a mortgage just yet? Well rent to own may be your best option. Strong Blocks 21 month rent to own program helps families get into a home while they work towards getting approved for a mortgage. If you have unsettled or unpaid evictions in your past, your first step will be working to get these paid before applying to the program.
Written by Tanika Allen, Friends of Housing
Tanika Allen is the Leasing Agent for Friends of Housing Corporation and has been an asset to the company since 2005. She has an Associate’s degree in business management, has completed several landlord/tenant trainings, and obtains a Real Estate Broker’s license for the state of Wisconsin. Her most enjoyable task and main focus is to help individuals and families lease into nice and affordable single family homes, duplexes, and apartments. Friends of Housing Corporation is a property management company that has been in operation since 1997 and manages over 2100 units in the greater Milwaukee area for market rate families, but mostly elderly and low income families.