What happens when Baltimore City renters don't pay the rent? If you haven't thought through this question or are currently dealing with late rental payments, it's time to understand how past-due rent affects your investments.
Late rental payments can lead to cash flow problems and even foreclosure on your property. Today our Baltimore property management experts talk about how you can protect yourself from late payments and what to expect when one late payment turns into more than one!
One Late Rental Property Payment Isn't That Bad, Is It?
Property owners shouldn't worry about one late payment, should they? It might seem like a minor issue at first, but how often has this happened to you? How many times is it okay for a renter to delay their payment?
The correct answer is zero! One late payment might not seem like a big deal at the time, but it could be the start of a pattern and series of problems. When residents don't pay the rent by the due date, your cash flow suffers—and bills go unpaid.
Maryland property owners depend on residents to pay the rent on time every month. When a renter gets away with missing their payment deadline one (or two) months, they might feel like it's okay to take additional liberties and ignore due dates again. Meanwhile, property management companies know that you don't have enough consistent cash flow to cover expenses!
Past-Due Rent Quickly Adds Up
When residents don't fulfill their obligations to pay the rent on time, what can investors do to pay the bills? Hopefully, you have enough cash reserves built up to cover monthly costs or any emergencies that come up while waiting on renters to catch up on their rental payments.
Unfortunately, when one late payment turns into two or three (or more), property owners must dig deep into their cash reserves to make up for the lack of funds to cover monthly mortgage payments and other expenses. If residents are delinquent on rent payments month after month, you could end up paying thousands of dollars out of your pockets just to maintain a rental home (without any incoming rental revenue).
If you own multiple properties in Baltimore, a late-rent problem becomes even more devastating to your bottom line and cash flow. If more than one resident isn't current on rental payments, you might not have the funds from one rental to help offset out-of-pocket funds to cover costs for other properties.
What's the Answer to Past-Due Rent?
Collecting the rent on time every month isn't always easy. Before you find yourself in any of the situations we've just described, our property management experts recommend having a plan in place to make sure you don't suffer if renters don't pay the rent on time.
Start Reminders Right Away
Your lease agreement should outline "how much can I rent my house for" or the monthly rent amount, when the rent is due, and when missed rental payments are considered "late." Your lease must also detail the penalties for missing rental payments and when your renters can expect reminders and late fees to accrue.
Work with a property management company to make sure these details follow landlord-tenant laws. Sending appropriate reminder notices should also comply with rental property regulations to communicate with residents about a lease violation.
Assess Late Fees
Sometimes a reminder is all it takes for a renter to get back on track with on-time rent payments. In many cases, a resident simply forgets to pay their rent and quickly gets their payment in once they realize it's late.
However, property management experts know that sometimes the next step is what it takes to get a renter's attention. Adding late fees (per the lease) on top of the rental payment is painful enough for many renters never to skip a payment due date again.
Hire a Property Management Company That Guarantees Rent
The best way to improve on-time rent collection is to turn the process over to an expert property manager in Baltimore, MD. The right property management team provides an online rent collection portal to make it easy for renters to pay the rent on time. They also handle reminders, late fees, and work with residents to comply with the lease.
To avoid cash flow issues, choose a property management company that offers a Guaranteed Rent program. With this service, investors get paid on time every month—even when renters miss a rental payment!
Choose Baltimore, MD Property Managers With a Guaranteed Rent Program!
If you’ve been experiencing inconsistent cash flow from your rental property and dealing with late rental payments, our Guaranteed Rent Program is a great solution. We offer the peace of mind that comes with knowing that rent will arrive on time and in full every month, which means less stress for rental property owners!
Renters Warehouse BW Metro offers a Guaranteed Rent Program that means you get paid every month—even if we're still working with residents to get their payments in on time. With our expert full-service property management and resources in Baltimore, investors don't have to worry about having enough cash to cover mortgage payments or other expenses. If you're ready to get paid every month, reach out to learn more about this program!