Why People Are Renting than Buying Homes

What to Do When a Tenant Stops Paying Rent

Did you know that between 30 and 40 million people are currently at risk of eviction in this country? This number has increased so dramatically due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Unfortunately, rent payments are how many landlords make their incomes. And, since it’s the tenant’s responsibility to pay rent, it’s not the landlord’s fault if they want to pursue legal action in the form of eviction when rent stops.

Still, beginning the eviction process is never easy, especially if you know your tenants well. That’s why we organized this list of landlord advice to provide you with some tips on what to do if your tenants stop paying rent. Let’s get started!

Landlord Advice: Five Steps to Take When Your Tenant Stops Paying Rent

When tenants stop paying rent many people assume that the next logical step is eviction. However, the reality is that this process can be long and expensive. As such, you want to make sure you follow the necessary steps to see if you can avoid this unfortunate process. In this section, we’ll go over the five steps you should take when your tenant stops paying rent.

1. Talk to Your Tenant About the Problem

The first thing you should try doing is communicating with your tenant. Send them a reminder through email or text that they’re behind on payments and will receive a late fee if they don’t pay on time.

If you suspect that they aren’t receiving the messages, then leave a written reminder. If this has happened multiple times, then it’s time to talk to them in person or over the phone. Ask them why they’ve been behind on payments.

It’s important to be as understanding as possible. For example, if your tenant lost their job or got sick, then you might want to be more lenient on them. This is especially true if they’ve been a good tenant in the past.

You can be lenient by allowing them to set up a payment plan, or renegotiate their lease. If you can afford it, you might even consider forgiving some of their rent debt. However, if you cannot reach a resolution that works for you both, then you might need to pursue additional action.

2. Send the Tenant a Formal ‘Pay or Quit’ Notice

The next step is to send a ‘pay or quit’ notice to your tenant. This is a formal notice that is required by most states. It informs the tenant of how much they owe and the number of days they have to pay it.

Most of the time the period is relatively short, between three and five days. However, you should always check your state laws, as different states have different periods. If the tenants can, then they will likely pay after this type of notice. If they don’t then there are two other options you can pursue.

3. Think About a ‘Cash For Keys’ Situation

If all else fails, then you might want to consider a ‘cash for keys’ scenario. This is where you pay your tenant a small amount to move off the property. Now, you might be wondering why you should have to pay your tenant to move out.

The answer is money. You can evict your tenants, but the process will be long, stressful, and expensive. As such, you can save a lot of money and peace of mind by negotiating an amount for them to move out.

Since most people facing eviction are in tough financial situations, most of them will likely take you up on this offer.

4. Contact a Lawyer or Property Manager

If you want to proceed with the eviction process, then you should find a lawyer who can provide the final notices and begin the process. Alternatively, you can go through a third-party negotiator like a property manager.

These types of services help handle all the stressful components of the eviction process. Once you find one of these services, then you can begin the eviction process.

5. Begin the Eviction Process

If you tried everything, then your last resort is to file for eviction. To do this, you or your lawyer will need to file eviction action with the local courts. In this, you should include any ‘pay or quit’ notices, as well as other written warnings.

Then, after paying court fees, you’ll meet with a judge and make your case. If you win the case, then local law enforcement will escort the tenants from the property.

Keep in mind that eviction should be used as a final option. Not only is it stressful and traumatizing for the parties involved, but it also costs quite a lot of money.

Can You Recover Back Rent When a Tenant Hasn’t Paid For Months?

If your tenant has gone months, or even years, without paying, then they likely owe you a substantial amount of money. If you’re in the situation, then you’re likely wondering whether or not you can recover any of the back rent they owe you.

The specific answer to this question depends on the nature of your lease contract and the amount that they owe you. If you’ve lost over $5,000 to your tenant, then you have the right to recover it.

However, this process can be difficult. To make it easier make sure to read this guide on how to recover back rent.

Want More Content? Keep Reading

We hope this landlord’s advice helped you learn the steps you should take when a tenant stops paying rent. As you can see, it’s always best to try and resolve the problem unofficially before going through with the eviction.

This process can be time-consuming and expensive, so try communicating with your tenant first. However, if they continually refuse to pay, then you will need to take legal action against them.

Did you find this article helpful? If the answer is yes, then you’re in the right place. Keep reading to find more content you’re sure to enjoy.

About Ambika Taylor

Myself Ambika Taylor. I am admin of https://hammburg.com/. For any business query, you can contact me at [email protected]