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Posts: 2
Reply with quote  #1 
My property is in Texas. My tenant was 4 months into a 12 month lease and was late on rent. She convinced me she was going to pay the following week with late fees.

I received an email on the day she was supposed to pay with late fees 'that she moved out'.

I am currently living in Italy. I will probably be flying back to check on the property shortly. Would I be able to deduct the ticket cost from my rental income when I do taxes?

Additionally, can I sue the tenant for the cost of the plane ticket?

The lease states a number of point the tenant is liable for in the case of a default. The last point states "any other recovery to which the Landlord may be entitled to by law".

Posts: 580
Reply with quote  #2 
I doubt you can get compensation for the plant ticket. YOU choose to be a long-distance landlord. That has all sorts of problems associated with it, but you made that choice, not the tenant. You can sue for the remainder of the lease (at least until you get it re-rented) or whatever the max is in TX or in your lease (many leases offer a two months' rent buyout or something similar to break the lease). But even if you win, you'll probably never see a penny from her. Just move on and find the next tenant. This time, be more careful about who you select, be strict on income, credit, etc. Better yet, sell the place in TX if that's not very close to where you live (less than hour's drive). 

Posts: 246
Reply with quote  #3 
Deductibility of the plane ticket depends on a few things.  I'm assuming you are a US citizen and you are on vacation in Italy.  The cost of changing the ticket to fly back early and check on the rental may be deductible.  Not the entire cost of the ticket.

Same is probably true for what you might be able to seek from the tenant (theoretically).  No judge is going to make a tenant pay for your vacation in Italy because they broke the lease.  The two aren't related.  But they might let you go after the change fees incurred to manage the situation.

IF (big "if") you do get awarded the damages AND (even bigger "and") collect, that would be income which would be offset by the expense on your rental return so the net would be a wash.

Talk to your personal accountant though because individual situations can change the tax implications significantly.

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