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Taking the Headache out of Rent Collection

Maybe all tenants plan on being ideal tenants when they sign a rental agreement. They will pay the rent on time, keep the property in like-new condition and never have noisy parties. However, the reality is that people who own rental properties often have challenges enforcing rent payments. Here are a few tips that can work to expedite your rent collection process and hopefully help you bypass rent-collection headaches.

Looking Professional: A Formal Rental Agreement
Projecting a professional look is important. You may only be renting your previous house until you can sell it, or find yourself renting several houses or apartments while still not thinking of yourself as a real estate person. Weather you are a landlord by accident or design, projecting a professional appearance encourages your tenants to treat you as a professional and to treat their agreement with your seriously.

This begins with using an official rental agreement. You can download one from many different sites and edit them to fit your needs. In that agreement, specify the date by which the rent payment must be received by you, not when it is due. This puts the onus of delivery firmly on the shoulders of the tenant, where it belongs.

Tenants will still offer a variety of excuses for not paying the rent when it is due, but having it signed by them in contract form at least provides you with an advantage if you must take legal action.

Personal Rent Collection: Not Advisable
Particularly if you have a small number of properties to manage, you may be tempted to collect the rent personally, door-to-door. This often provides you a peek into the property so you can ensure it is being maintained, but it is not a great model to follow for several reasons.

Unscrupulous people can uncover that you carry money that day and rob you; your tenants may resent the feeling that you are checking up on them and the process is inefficient and smacks of amateurism.

Mailing to your Home Address: Don't Give Your Tenants Your Home Address Ever

 

They may all be friendly and scrupulously honest, but they are your tenants, not your friends; don't use your home address to collect mailed rent checks. If you must, open a Post Office box and use that address exclusively for rent collections. For most small rental managers, this works well. Most tenants will pay on time and all you need to do it pick up the checks and deposit them.

Electronic Payment: Best of the Best

 

When you discuss rent payment with your tenant, begin the discussion with the premise that you expect them to use some electronic method of rent payment. There are many available now, some through banks and credit unions and others through apps of all kinds. Though you must be willing to accept that not everyone has the latest electronic payment options available, start by assuming they do and discuss which system you can expect payment through before offering options. Ideally, the second option is payment by check.

PayNearMe: An Option that Works
PayNearMe is a way to enable tenants to pay rent without online access or bank accounts. Use this address: http://paynearme.com/en/ for the details of creating a PayNearMe account. It's easy, open to nearly all tenants, and may save you a great deal of anxiety in the rent collection process

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