Collecting Unpaid Rent

Posted On February 10th, 2021 by Michael Dunham

Learn about collecting unpaid rent.

Life is but a game of risk. We all roll the dice or bet on red with each and every decision we make in our lives. Whether it’s an actual bet or a figurative one, our lives are just one big game of risk. This fact is especially true when it comes to the world of a housing landlord. Each and every lease across the country is built on one simple and straightforward foundation: trust. There’s a trust that must be shared between tenant and landlord. A tenant must trust the landlord to take care of the house or apartment they live in, and a landlord must trust their tenant to make their monthly payments on time and in full. It sounds like a pretty simple give and take, right? Well, you’d be surprised to find that this is not always the case. 

Landlords all over the country are being scammed out of their money from lowly tenants who simply refuse to pay the monthly amount that they initially agreed upon. It’s a nice ride to free rent for these tenants, but for the landlords, it’s a slippery slope into crippling debt. So how does one avoid this unnecessary heartache? Luckily for you, this is where we come in. Here are a few prominent things you need to know when it comes to collecting unpaid rent from your tenants. 

The Difference Between Late Payments And Non-Payments 

While the issue of eluding a monthly payment may seem like a cut and dry process, there’s actually a great deal that goes behind it. For example, there are two types of unpaid rent. One is a late payment, while the other is a non-payment. As their names would suggest, one is when a payment is late, and one is when a payment is not made at all. In most cases, late payments usually lead to non-payments because the tenant becomes more and more assured of their landlord’s leniency. 

The relationship between landlord and tenant can easily be compared to the relationship of parent and child. And like a parent and child, if the parent lets something slip one time, the child is more than likely to do it again because they got away with it the first time. This same principle can be applied when a landlord allows their tenant to be late with their monthly payments. This absolutely unacceptable. If you set an exact date for you to be paid for the house or apartment you’re subleasing, then stick to it! You are only hurting yourself when you become lenient with your tenants. 

Collecting Unpaid Rent From A Former Tenant 

The process of collecting unpaid rent from a former tenant is not an easy one. Far from it, actually. The first step in this long and challenging process is to take your former tenant to small claims court. It is here that you will make your case to obtain the judgment for the unpaid rent. Without this, you will have little to no leverage when it comes to collecting this rent. 

It’s essential to have all your ducks and in a row and all the information you need before you find yourself in a small claims court. If you come unprepared, you’ll be at risk of losing your case and thus not being able to claim your unpaid rent.