How to handle rent issues

It’s a cost that every tenant has to face: the rent. Obviously, you always want to pay your rent on time and in the manner that is outlined in your lease. However, life happens. You or your roommate may lose a job. You might have a family or medical emergency. During these times, having a good relationship with your apartment manager or landlord can be extremely helpful. Here’s some helpful advice about dealing with the rent, and common issues that many tenants face.

Paying Your Rent

Paying your rent should be outlined in your lease, including how your landlord or property manager likes it paid. Does the apartment have an online portal to pay your rent electronically, or do they instead like a direct debit? There’s a possibility they may even want a check delivered to the office. If you’re not sure, double check. Better to be on-time than sorry.

What Do I Do If I Think I May Be Late Paying My Rent?

Life happens. You may lose your job, have a family or medical emergency or even simply find yourself in over your head financially. Don’t panic. Many apartment leases have grace periods or a period where late rent is acceptable. If it looks like you’re not going to be able to pay your rent within that time frame, contact your property management or landlord immediately. Let them know in advance of when the payment is due and tell them about your situation. There may be a possibility that they can extend the grace period, or they will be able to discuss penalty fees with you.

My Roommate is Late with Rent

As above, be open with your landlord or apartment manager. If you are both on the lease, you are both responsible for the rent. Discuss your options with your roommate and landlord and come to an agreement. Showing that you are willing to pay and want to work with your landlord or property manager will help them to trust you as a tenant.

I Think I Need to Withhold Rent

Whether it’s a lack of response to a maintenance issue, or an ongoing problem that you feel isn’t being handled, opting to withhold payment of rent can present many legal issues for you and your landlord. Laws vary from state to state on what you can and cannot do legally, so it’s important to understand what the law for your particular state is. Non-payment can result in late fees, charges and even eviction.

Have we covered all the questions you have about rent? If not, let us know below!



About The Author

Kari Lloyd has been a freelance writer for over 15 years. A Chicago native and recent transplant to Atlanta, Kari spent 10 years living in London, UK where she worked as a music journalist and restaurant reviewer.