Have you fallen behind the times when it comes to collecting the rent for your rental properties? If you aren't taking advantage of the various ways that online services can be used to take rent payments, you're not only making it harder on your tenants—your making it harder on yourself. Learn why good property management includes finding ways to make it easier for tenants to get your their rent money (and harder to make excuses for missing and late payments).
1. Online portals are always open.
Except for the rare "down for maintenance," online payment portals make it convenient for tenants to get their rent to you at any time of the day or night. If you're still collecting the rents yourself, that means going from rental to rental to pick up the payments and making sure that you keep track of tenant schedules to do it successfully. If you're still requiring your tenants to hand-deliver their rent to your office, you're restricting them to your business hours.
That can make it legitimately difficult for some tenants to get their rent to you if work or school scheduling prevents them from getting to your office during business hours. It also opens the door to a variety of excuses for why the rent is late, including "I was there but you were out of the office," and "my car broke down so I couldn't get there." Throw the winter months into the picture and you can have some tenants, particularly older or disabled ones, end up late on their payments because they're snowed in or afraid to travel in the bad weather.
2. Automatic payroll deductions make the rent a priority.
Automatic bill payments are accepted these days by just about everyone—which means that it's also time for landlords and property managers to start accepting them. If you have tenants that have their paychecks direct deposited, you can arrange for automatic withdrawals of the rent to come out of those deposits.
You can even make it easier on your tenants by allowing them to split the total rent out over more than one paycheck. For example, if your tenant is paid bi-weekly, allow them to pay half of the rent with their first paycheck of the month and half of the rent with the second paycheck.
This eliminates the need to worry about whether or not your tenants are prioritizing the rent. Once you set up the automated payments, it's harder for a tenant to decide to push off the rent for a week or two in order to afford something else that's arguably less critical than the roof over their heads.
For more help with managing your properties, consider working with a property management company. They can take a great deal of the stress and effort off your shoulders. Click here to learn more about property management.