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First Steps to Take When Your Tampa Tenant Doesn’t Pay Rent

First Steps to Take When Your Tampa Tenant Doesn’t Pay Rent

A good screening process and a positive, respectful relationship with your tenants should ensure your rent is paid on time every month. But, bad things happen even to good tenants. There might be a month where rent is not paid on time, and you will need a process in place to deal with this.

Your lease agreement should provide the consequences of late rental payments. If rent is due on the first of the month, and it hasn’t been paid, you’ll need to contact your tenant. That conversation will determine what happens next.

Communicate with Your Tampa Tenants

When rent does not get paid when it’s due, reach out to your tenants and find out what happened. It’s completely possible that they’re preoccupied or distracted and they just forgot to pay it. Maybe they’re in a unique financial situation and they’ll need a little more time to get their money together. If it’s a problem that can be easily and quickly resolved with a text message or a phone call, you want to make sure you stay calm and professional. Give your tenants a chance to explain, and figure out what to do next.

Setting up a Payment Plan

If your tenant understands that rent is late and asks for some extra time to pay, that’s good news. If it’s an otherwise good tenant, it means you probably won’t have to take any dramatic actions. However, protect yourself and hold your tenant accountable by requiring that a payment agreement be signed. The agreement should state how much is owed and when it will be paid and how it will be paid. Keep this on file in case the tenant doesn’t keep his or her promise and you need to take the next steps.

Once you get the late rent, reinforce with your tenant that the later payment does not change the date rent is actually due. For example, if your tenant can’t pay until the 10th or the 15th this month, they may think they can pay on that date going forward. You need to let them know that the next month’s rent will still be due on the first.

Do not waive any late fees. Consistently enforce your lease and your rent collection policy.

Serve a Three Day Notice to Pay or Quit

If you cannot get anywhere with your tenants and they aren’t responsive to your calls or messages, you may have to move forward and serve a Three Day Notice to Pay or Quit. This lets your tenants know that they have three days to catch up with the rent or move out of the property. After that, you are free to pursue an eviction.

Dealing with late and unpaid rent is a terrible experience for any landlord. It helps to work with a professional Tampa property management. We have the resources and the experience to ensure your rent is paid on time. We’d be happy to tell you more. Please contact us at Real Property Management Instant Equity.



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