Rent collection should be a glorious time for you; it means your rent is being paid and your investment is proving profitable. However, not all tenants pay on time. This can be frustrating for landlords who have their own financial obligations to meet. We’re sharing some of the best things you can do to ensure you’re collecting rent effectively and efficiently at your rental property.
Written Rent Collection Procedures
Strong leases have rent collection policies in them. Your lease should explicitly state when rent is due, how much is due, and where and how it should be paid. Include every detail. That way, there’s no confusion when the rent doesn’t come in and the tenant tries to claim he or she didn’t know how to pay. When you’re enforcing your rent collection policies, you can point to the lease. This will help you if you find yourself in court, having to evict a non-paying tenant.
Enforce Late Fees Consistently
Perhaps your lease states that rent is due on the first of the month, and that tenants have a grace period of two days to pay, but on the fourth of the month, it’s considered late. If your lease indicates that a late fee will be charged, make sure you charge it every time. If you waive it the first time a tenant pays late, they will expect that same treatment every time. And, if you waive the late fee for one tenant but not another, you could be accused of discrimination, which is a violation of fair housing. Be consistent and show your tenants you take on-time payments very seriously.
Provide Different Payment Options
A good way to ensure your tenants pay rent on time is by providing a number of different ways for them to pay. Some of them will want to hand you a check. However, most tenants today prefer an electronic payment method. You can accept PayPal or Zelle, or Apple Pay. Find a way to accept rent payments online or through a mobile device whenever you can. This will give you the opportunity to receive rent immediately, and you won’t have to hear excuses such as the check is in the mail.
Rent collection is easily handled by professional property managers because we do it all the time. We have heard every excuse, and we know how to keep rent coming in consistently. If you need any help establishing or enforcing rent collection procedures, don’t hesitate to contact us at Decas Group.