Did you know that 41% of Oklahoma City residents are renters? If you're starting your property investment journey, it's a better time than ever.
One of the most important tasks of a landlord is rent collection. It might seem scary to ask your tenants to pay you if you're not used to it, but remember that tenants are already anticipating rent payments. As long as you're fair and on top of things, they'll be happy.
We're here with a few tips about how to collect rent. Read on to learn more.
Why You Collect Rent on the First
If you've ever rented a property yourself, you know that rent is almost always collected on the first of the month. Why is this?
Collecting rent on the first day of every month makes things easier for you and your tenants alike. Your tenants always know when rent is going to be due and you don't have to scramble to remember different dates for different tenants.
But what do you do if your tenant moves in on a different date? If your tenant moves in on the 15th, do you charge them on the 15th every month?
Instead of charging them for the full month or changing the payment date, give them a prorated rent. This means that they only pay for the time that they're in the rental unit and they go back to paying on the first in the future.
Ways to Collect Rent: Which Is Best?
Many old-school landlords still collect rent payments the old-fashioned way. They ask for cash or checks and require tenants to mail them or deliver them in person. While this might work if the landlord also lives on the property, it isn't the best option.
One of our top tips for landlords is to allow online payments. Checks are on their way out, so most tenants no longer use them. They'll prefer to make their payments online so they can do it with credit cards or their online bank accounts.
This is also better for you as the landlord. It will ensure that you get your money on time. Not only is it quicker to receive an online payment than a mailed payment, but a tenant payment portal will also notify your tenants when rent is almost due so they don't forget.
What to Do If Rent Is Late
So what happens if your tenant hasn't paid their rent?
It's a good idea to have a "grace period" after the first. It's possible that the tenant hasn't received their paycheck yet and they need an extra day or two. This is normal.
If a week has passed and your tenant hasn't paid, send them a note. They may have forgotten or there might be an emergency and they're away from home.
If your tenant is having trouble paying, it's not a good idea to go through the effort of eviction if you don't have to. Consider setting up a payment plan for your tenant instead.
Rent Collection: Are You Prepared?
Rent collection is one of the most important parts of being a landlord and property investor, but it's not difficult. Remember, your tenants have likely rented before and they know what to expect.
If you want help with rent collection, tenant screening, and more, consider hiring a property manager! At HomeRiver Group, we help our clients make the most of their investment properties. Contact us so we can start working together today.