A major concern of most rental property owners is collecting the rent. In conjunction with how much rent you should charge, figuring out how to manage it is one of the most important decisions any property owner will make. Having a good rent collection method set up and ready in advance is the best way to encourage on-time rent payments! Let’s look at some of the best practices to collect the rent from tenants and a few methods that are better to avoid.
Best Methods for Direct Rent Payment
- Online. When it comes to collecting the rent, there are many options. But with so many people tapping into the affordances of online payment systems these days, the most in-demand rental payment method is – by far – online rent payment. Tenants like the security and convenience of making payments online, and property owners can get those payments deposited
- Payment App. Another up-and-coming method for rent payment is payment apps like Venmo, Zelle, and PayPal. These services are also very convenient for many tenants and can make requesting and sending money quick and easy.
- ACH Debit. Lastly, some Mountain House property managers are now setting up ACH debit for their tenants, which can be another good way to ensure rent payments arrive on time. If the tenant is comfortable doing so, they can provide their bank account information and have their rent automatically deducted each month. Some tenants may not be comfortable with this arrangement, so it may be helpful to give them a choice between two or three methods. It’s also important to note that each payment method usually charges fees to use them. Fees vary, so it’s important to do your homework before choosing one payment method.
Payment Methods to Avoid
On the other hand, there are a few payment methods that you should discourage your tenants from using. For example, you should avoid accepting rent payments made in cash since creating a paper trail is very difficult. If a dispute arose, it would be difficult to prove when and how much your tenant actually paid. Personal checks are also problematic because they take a long time to clear and can bounce if there are insufficient funds, resulting in bank fees for you and your tenant. Money orders and cashier’s checks are usually okay, especially when collecting a security deposit. Just be sure to specify which method you prefer and have a documentation method ready to create a solid paper trail.
While you may need to occasionally use one or more of these methods, it is usually best to avoid them. These methods are difficult to document and abundant with problems. You can even prohibit these payment methods in your lease documents to clarify that you won’t accept rent payments in these ways.
Collect Through a Property Management Company
Even under the best circumstances, collecting rent can be a time-consuming part of owning rental properties. But it doesn’t have to be that way, particularly if you employ a rental property management company to handle the process for you. At Real Property Management One, we offer tech-enhanced processes that include online rental payments.
Hiring a property management company is one of the best ways to keep your rent payments coming in on time, month after month. Contact us today to learn more about our quality services!
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