So Many Tenants, So Many Rent Payment Options

By E-Renter Tenant Screening
Posted on April 19, 2011 under Rents and Deposits | icon: commentBe the First to Comment

tenant credit checkIn a perfect world, every tenant would pay their rent online a day or two in advance, so that the funds are automatically transferred into the landlord’s preferred bank account. In this fantasy world, no rent checks, money orders, mail issues or late payments would ever need to be dealt with. Landlords know this will never happen!

In reality, tenants come with a wide assortment of likes, dislikes and financial challenges. Some refuse to keep a checking account (or can’t get a bank to open one). Others are not computer-savvy and will be unable to navigate an online rent payment system. Online payments may be difficult for the the elderly or disabled to deal with. Still other tenants just prefer to deal in cash.

Depending on your rental property and typical tenant, it might be unrealistic to demand that all tenants mail you a check or pay rent online. Making it easier for your tenants to pay their rent on time by offering options that work for everyone might take some effort—but it can pay off. Just make sure that it works for you, as well.

Some options to consider for tenant rent payments:

  • Dropping off cash or money orders on-site: this is not a good idea, as it invites theft!
  • Set up a rent-receiving bank account and distribute deposit slips to tenants: Indicate each name on the slip, and tenants make deposits directly to the account. The landlord can track deposits online, and usually view and print a copy of the deposit slip.
  • Collect rent personally: Many landlords prefer to pick up rent payments themselves because it gives them a chance to check on the property and have some face-to-face tenant time. It can also prevent late payments, since the tenant either has to pay up or explain why they can’t. However, this can be dangerous—especially when cash is involved.
  • Provide self-addressed envelopes: Whether you provide the stamps or not is up to you; many tenants find it easy to drop a money order or check in an envelope that is ready to go. It may seem like going too far to make things easier for the tenant, but if it helps your cash flow—why not?
  • Direct deposit or electronic transfer: In this situation, the tenant agrees to automatic electronic transfer from their bank account to yours on a specific day of the month. Automatic bill pay is becoming the way people pay bills, so why not rent as well?

Creative rent payment solutions can help keep your tenants paying on time–and keep you in the black!

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