Tag Archives: Debt Collection

Back Rent Collection – Get on it Immediately!

Collect your back rent as soon as feasible. Clearly, it is a part of the rent collection procedure and not especially cheerful, however after you let the situation spin out of control, you will make collecting sometimes more difficult. If you do not allow that happen, you will have a significantly simpler occasion receiving rent that is later than usual. The 1st second your renter is behind schedule on money owed, you should step up to the plate!

It is valuable to get on it fast, however be judicious with doing so in person since that could lead to conflict. The ideal thing to do is send out a letter to the renter. The correspondence does not have to be sent certified and is not a legal paper. Be certain to send out your letter to the exact property and have the the required postage on it; this way, the second you mail it, it will be classified acknowledged. The subject of the correspondence must courteously say that he or she must notify you to solve the problem as soon as doable.

When the renter offers you some of the monies, it would be sensible to take it. And you ought to present the renter a receipt for the quantity of money you are handed noting that this is simply some of the money and that they are still obliged to shell out the balance of their money owed.

It is completely within your rights as a property owner to look into how substantial a circumstances your renter may be in. You are permitted to look into if they still have a job. If your original rental agreement does not avoid you from communicating with their employer, you might do so to determine if they are currently working at their job.

Additionally, the Fair Credit Reporting Act lets you to check their credit report once more if they are financially indebted to you (with back monies. Your property application is considered a legal paper and nearly always contains a clause noting that this is allowable.

Although it is inside your privileges to do so, it will not be of much benefit to you. Regardless of the renter maybe being unemployed and carrying extra debt, if they come up with the rent money, you can not send them packing. The only thing that getting this updated information may do for you is to give you personal rules as to how much breathing room you will assign them for closing out the balance of their rent.

What you do not want to have happen, if you can dodge it, is not collecting the rent and still having the renter in the apartment. If this happens, you are left with no options but throwing them out.

The first step is to send your renter a Notice to Quit which is considered a legal paper. This paper tells your late renter that they have a certain duration of time to pay you their back rent (usually between three and fourteen days depending on what city your property is located). If they can come up with the late balance, they are permitted to remain living there. If they can not, they must vacate.

If the renter vacates still owing you back payments, you might have to gather the overdue amount in some other way.

The Fair Debt Collections Practices Act (FDCPA) was established to protect consumers (in this case, your renter) from abuse by debtcollectors. The FDCPA states that a property owner is not considered a debt collector since they are acting on their own behalf. But even though you are not subject to the rules of the FDCPA, you can not use the same abusive and often, corrupt practices that the FDCPA disallows.

If your building is managed by someone other than yourself (for example, a residential property manager that lives on the site or you have hired a property management company to manage your property), they are not considered debt collectors either. This is for the reason that the rental payments are not owed to another individual or property management company. Know that, neither you nor your management company (if they look after your property) can mention a third party debt collector during the collection process. If you do, you are considered a debt collector and are subject to the practices of a debt collector under the FDCPA.

If you discover yourself unable to acquire your back payments paid in it’s entirety, you may have to sue the renter for breech of his rental agreement. If this occurs, you can maintain eviction on your own or hire an lawyer who is more familiar with the legal paperwork needed to complete the process to the courts satisfaction.

So, get on it now!

By Stirling Gardner (The Hollywood Landlord) is a writer and property management expert on StockMarketsReview.com

I currently use Rent Recovery Service collection service, they provide a flat fee program that has been extremely helpful in recovering my money.  Plus I get to keep all the money my tenant’s pay!!!  To find a collection agency visit my site here or visit Rent Recovery Service.

Application to Rent – It’s all in the details

When renting to a tenant or renting to multiple tenants its extremely important to have them fill out a rental application.  Rental application form or application to rent form can sometimes be found at your local stationary store like Staples or Office Depot.  You can also obtain the form from a tenant screening company, find my list here.  Apartment Associations or some may call them landlord associations will also provide the necessary landlord forms.  There are local apartment associations and nationwide associations, you can find my lists for them here.

The Application to Rent is one of the most important pieces of information you can gather from a prospective tenant during the tenant screening process.  Any information they provide assists you with your decision to rent as well as helps you recover lost rent should they skip out (more on this later).

Here is some of the information you should be requesting from your prospective tenant or new renter when they apply for your apartment for rent or home for rent:

  • Tenant full name; include first name, middle name, last name, and any AKA’s
  • Tenant address history; ask for 7-10 years of addresses to assist you in their prior living history
  • Date of Birth; You cannot base your decision to rent on a tenant’s date of birth, however, many tenant screening reports will require this piece of information.  It will also help with the debt collection process should you need to search for them later.  Lastly the tenant’s date of birth also assists should a Jr. vs. Sr. issue ever arise.
  • Social Security Number; This is required to obtain a credit report or tenant screening background report.  The tenant’s social security number can also be used for skip tracing should they leave and owe money.  Many tenant screening companies will also provide Social Security Fraud reports, I recommend you obtain one on your prospective tenant.
  • Phone numbers.  Get their home phone, cell phone, work phone (see below), and any other phone number they will provide.  Why are so many tenant phone numbers needed?  There are 2 main reasons: (1) to let them know you want to rent to them and (2) to chase after them if the tenant leaves owing you money!
  • Work history for 7-10 years.  It’s important to know where your prospective new tenant’s income is coming from.  Do they have a job?  Where is the job?  What is the address of the job?  Their boss’s name?  The phone number to the boss?  The title of their job?  Their previous and current salary?  You want to know all of this information to help in determining if the tenant can afford your rent.  A tenant screening report or tenant background check will provide credit and criminal information as well as insight on their debt/credit,, but their current job should still be verified.  Employment information also will assist in the debt collection process should the tenant skip out owing you money!
  • Banking information is also important.  First you’ll need this information to verify the tenant has the money to pay your rent.  You want to know they can write you a check each month!  (and that it will clear!)  Plus, as I stated with other information above, this will help with the debt collection process.
  • Tenant’s Relatives and Non-Relatives.  This information is helpful for the tenant screening process and the debt collection process.  Relatives will help you confirm the type of person your new tenant is, they will also help you locate the tenant when they leave you owing rent.  Non-relatives are also important because friendships change over years.  Your tenant may list someone that, after moving out, they are no longer friends with.  That person may be more than willing to assist you in your debt collection needs.
  • Additional Occupants in the apartment.  Who else is going to reside in the unit?  What is their name?  What is their social security number and date of birth?  How are they related to your prospective tenant?  Depending on the age of the occupant you may want them to sign the rental lease too.  You should perform a tenant screening background check on every occupant over the age of 18 even if they aren’t signing a lease!
  • Pets.  Do they have any pets?  Do you even want to allow pets?  What kind of pets are they?  Age of pet?  Type of pet?  How big (weight) is the pet?  What’s the name of the pet?  You’d be surprised how often the pet “gets out” and how helpful it can be to know its name.  Or if that dog is parking all night because your tenant is gone and you can yell out to the dog.
  • What type of vehicles does the prospective tenant own or lease?  A tenant screening background check will not always show automobiles.  You should obtain the type of car, color, year, make and model.  Always know whose vehicles are parked on your property.  This includes autos for co-tenants/additional occupants.
  • Ask the hard questions!  Ask the tenant on your rental application form if they have ever been evicted from an apartment or home.  Sure many will lie and you’ll discover an eviction on their tenant screening eviction background check, but others may fear the question and not even apply — saving you time, money, and aggravation.
  • Important:  You must have a signed release from the tenant authorizing you to obtain and investigate information on them such as a tenant screening credit report, criminal background check, eviction records, etc.  The law requires this release, so don’t forget it!
  • Always have the tenant print their name and provide a signature and date.  If the application is more than 1 page, its not a bad idea to have them initial or sign the bottom of each page in the corner.

My apartment association provides rental applications for free.  You can also find landlord forms like the application to rent from some tenant screening companies.  Visit my listings to locate an apartment association by state or visit the American Apartment Owners Association, a nationwide landlord association providing larger discounts than local chapters, for the necessary landlord forms.

Collect Delinquent Rent

Collecting delinquent rents can be a difficult and discouraging chore. Allowing a tenant to get away without paying is even worse. Once a tenant has skipped out or been evicted for back rent, you must take the extra step and aggressively pursue him. Not only are they essentially steeling from you but if you let it go, they will go on and cheat another landlord. We are all in this together and need to keep each other informed of bad tenants. Reporting to the Tenant Registry and the major credit bureaus puts all of us on notice that a bad tenant is out there and we should not rent to him.

Rent Recovery Service (www.aBadTenant.com) provides an online collection service that will take your past due rent accounts on a flat fee or contingency fee basis. The flat fee basis is very inexpensive and completely automated. The contingency fee based method is more aggressive and open-ended. Either method is effective and ultimately brings the money back to where it belongs…your bottom line!

In today’s uncertain economy landlords and property management companies can ill afford to lose money and let tenants get away with living in your building for free. Take charge and take back what is rightfully yours.

courtesy of www.RentRecoveryService.com