When it comes to rental payments, the expectation of timeliness is far from unreasonable. That said, a signed contract is no guarantee of money in the bank. As well as causing landlords unwanted stress, constant delays and repeatedly missed payments can have significant knock-on effects.
It is in the best interest of both tenants and landlords to maintain a mutually respectful relationship. Whether you’re carrying out repair work on a property, rectifying faults or, in this case, collecting rent, it is important that professionalism and courtesy are upheld at all times.
Unfortunately, when it comes to tenants, punctuality and consistency are never guaranteed. Whether you’re dealing with students, families or young professionals, there are various reasons that may cause an individual to forget or withhold rent; unforeseen personal circumstances, financial issues and contractual disagreements to name a few. In such instances, it is vital that landlords understand the proper way to go about rent collection and reminders.
The good news is that with a little assistance and the correct procedures in place, rent collection can be straightforward for all parties involved. In the following article, we’ll discuss best practices for hassle-free rent collection.
Contracts And Rental Agreements
When it comes to efficient, stress-free rent collection, it is important to establish clear expectations from the outset. Typically, this will come in the form of a rental agreement and/or contract. Without clear documentation outlining when and how rent is due to be paid, or the procedures that will follow a late payment, misunderstandings and disagreements are bound to arise.
A well-drafted rental agreement should cover all bases and prepare for every eventuality during a short or long-term tenancy. Not only is it crucial to state how much rent is due and when, but the means through which it should be paid and the steps that will be taken if a payment is missed. Should a disagreement arise, this initial contract will help to clarify any misunderstandings and settle the dispute promptly.
Cash Is No Longer King
Gone are the days of physical exchanges; crumpled bank notes and dog-eared cheques are relics of the past in an almost cashless society. This isn’t to say that physical currency is a hard no, but it is far from the most efficient means of transaction available.
As mentioned above, stating the method through which you wish to be paid is a key part of any contract. We’ll explore this in further detail shortly, but it is worth noting that standing orders are usually the most reliable ways to send and receive rent.
Standing orders are one of the easiest and most effective means of rent collection by landlords and tenants alike. By setting up repeat payments, tenants are able to send pre-specified amounts at the same time every month, until cancelled. This can be done using mobile or online banking and removes the risk of human error almost entirely. Requesting rent via standing order also enables landlords to keep track of payments in one place, as opposed to multiple sources of payment which may prove difficult to monitor.
A little forethought goes a long way; while no landlord wants to feel like they’re constantly nagging their tenants, gentle reminders and polite notices are often helpful. Rather than maintaining radio silence until a payment is missed, why not send an email or text a few days in advance? Sure, this requires a little preemptive thinking, but it will save a lot of hassle down the road.
Additionally, it is important to remember that unforeseen circumstances may affect a tenant’s ability to pay rent on time. In such instances, an element of flexibility is often the most viable solution. Though a lenient approach to rental payments is never ideal, the importance of a positive tenant relationship should not be underestimated. Being amicable and understanding of one-off personal issues is often far easier for everyone involved than reaching for the legal handbook.
Utilise Property Management Services
Managing and collecting rental payments is certainly no walk in the park. Whether you’re dealing with short, medium or long-term lets, it takes proper preparation, constant maintenance and a proactive approach. As a landlord, this can prove incredibly difficult while managing multiple properties or everyday life. Fortunately, property management services offer a comprehensive solution to these issues.
Here at Hopewell, we offer a range of property management services for short, medium and long lets. Our expert team are able to handle every aspect of your property, should you so wish. From viewings, references and deposits to routine maintenance and rental collection, we take the time and care to ensure your property is managed effectively and is compliant with current legislation.