Once you have moved a qualified tenant into your property, you should expect them to pay rent on time. If you’ve done a good job screening your tenants, you should have a resident who is capable of paying rent on time every month. However, it’s possible for even the best of tenants to be late submitting their rent once in a while. There can be unexpected issues and unforeseen circumstances.
It’s important to have a process in place when rent is late. Make sure your lease reflects your expectations in terms of how much rent is due, when it is due, and how it should be paid.
Serve a Three Day Notice to Pay or Quit
When the tenant’s rent is not submitted by the due date, it is best to call the tenant and ask them what happened. It might be a simple oversight or an unusual financial circumstance that has kept them from paying rent on time. If the tenant claims they will submit the rent by the following day, you should give them a courtesy head’s up that a Three Day Notice to Pay or Quit will still be posted. If the rent is submitted as stated, then the notice will be voided. If not, then you will proceed with serving the notice on the tenant.
It’s a good idea to always serve this notice, even if the tenants inform you of when you can expect the rent to be paid. It allows you to move forward quickly if that becomes necessary.
Posting and Mailing a Three Day Notice
You should make sure that this notice is complete and accurate. Do not add any fees which are not part of the rent on the notice. You should only include the rent that’s due to make sure that the notice is accurate. You also want to make sure this notice period ends on a business day and not on a weekend.
Once the notice is complete, you can mail it to the tenant via first class mail. You also want to have a third party take this notice to the rental property to hand-deliver it to the tenant. If the tenant for some reason is not available at the property, they can post it on the main door and take a picture. To complete and record this event, the third party should also fill out a proof of service.
Moving Onto Eviction
Once you have followed all these steps and the tenant has still not paid the rent at the end of the notice period, you can initiate the eviction process. This starts with the filing of necessary paperwork in court, which you can do on your own, or you can ask a professional attorney for assistance. This process may take between one and four months depending on the tenant response.
Eviction can be a very expensive process, so we recommend you develop healthy communication between the tenant and the landlord to ensure there’s a successful relationship in place, where rent is likely to be paid on time.
If you have any further questions, please contact us at Core Alliance Property Management.