Is Your Tenant Not Paying Rent? - A Guide to Collecting Rent in Oahu

Posted Friday, February 12, 2021 by Kim Grennan

Almost every rental property owner faces the fear that their tenants won’t pay rent. You’ve almost certainly heard horror stories about long evictions and terrible tenants. 

You can mitigate the risk of late rent payments by screening tenants thoroughly before you offer a lease. It also helps to work with a professional Oahu property management company. Contact us at Elite Pacific Properties if you’d like to learn more about why we’re able to collect rent efficiently and on time. Our eviction rate is very low, and that’s because we have a solid rent collection process in place. 

Try these rent collection tips, and contact a property manager if you’re still having trouble getting your tenants to pay on time.


Set Rent Collection Policies and Expectations in the Lease Agreement

Residents need to understand your expectations are before they even move in. 

As you’re discussing and signing the lease agreement, talk about when rent is due, how you expect it to be paid, and what the consequences are if it’s paid late. All of this should also be documented in the lease agreement. 

It’s also a good idea to offer your residents a variety of ways to pay rent. This increases the chances that you’ll have it paid on the first of the month. Offer online or electronic rental payments, let them know if you have a grace period and explain how the late fees work if rent isn’t paid on the day that it’s due.


Communicate Openly and Transparently

When tenants are late paying their rent, they tend to avoid their landlords. It helps to create a relationship where they’re willing to talk to you. If rent is going to be late, you can feel more in control of the situation when you know about it ahead of time. Encourage your tenants to talk to you. It’s still necessary to charge those late fees, but if they can communicate the potential for late rent before the due date, you’ll be able to prepare for it.  

Reach out to your tenant if the rent is late and try and find out what the problem is. Be professional and kind. Usually, you can rectify the issue, especially if it’s an otherwise good tenant. If the rent is going to be late, set a date for the rent to be paid. 


Stay Firm and Be Consistent with Oahu Tenants

Once you are able to collect the late rent, you can reinforce your expectations moving forward. Don’t let your tenants think that by accepting rent late one month, you’re going to be okay with them paying whenever they want going forward. Consistency is important.   

You can always evict your tenant when rent isn’t paid. We recommend trying to work something out first.

The goal is to ensure your tenant doesn’t get into the habit of being late on rent. This will become a problem for you if you have to chase them every month. Set the terms and expectations immediately.  You may have a situation where it’s a job loss or something that’s causing the problem, and if it doesn’t look like they’ll regain their financial footing, you may have to talk about terminating the tenancy. 

Good communication, solid and consistent policies, and an understanding of leasing and landlord/tenant laws will help you collect rent on time every month. If you’d like some help, please don’t hesitate to contact us at Elite Pacific Properties. 

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