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Posts: 7
Reply with quote  #1 
Sorry, I'm relatively new to this, but left having to manage 7 properties my parents own after they got sick... it's a very steep learning curve.

My question is about the form of payment acceptance my dad has set up to accept rent now--primarily, most of our tenants pay by direct deposit into one checking acct.  However, with 5 of our properties having the same rent due date and amount, this is getting harder and harder to manage.  When the bank (Bank of America) gives us a statement that someone has put in a direct deposit, it does not immediately show us the deposit slip, so how do we know which renter put it in?  Sometimes, our tenants put it in at the last minute and we need to know immediately if they are to be given late fees the next day.  Even after the deposit slip scan comes through, sometimes renters forget to write their names on them (despite repeated reminders that they need to identify themselves to get credit for payments), and this causes confusion.  One time, one tenant (who we are currently trying to evict) lied and tried to take credit for payment she did not send in.  Surely there must be an easier, more dependable way landlords do direct deposits?  Apologies if this sounds like a dumb question, but I really can't understand how this works.  Aside from asking them to send personal checks (which is not convenient for either party and has bounced check issues in itself), what is the best way to do this?  Are we supposed to open different checking accounts, one for every unit, to keep all the rents separate?

Oh yeah, and a related problem is if you have to take a tenant to court for nonpayment, if they make a last minute direct deposit (a last-ditch effort to avoid court) and we fail to edit this into an amended payment before court, does this vacate judgement?  In other words, let's say they send $50 to us a day before court and we don't know it's them in time.  They then show up in court and say "Well, I paid them part of it yesterday, and their statement is all wrong.  We don't deserve to get evicted when we are still trying to pay.", can we still get them out?

Posts: 146
Reply with quote  #2 
Have you considered switching to an online rent collection service?  I started using Cozy Property Management and found it to be just what I need.  You will have a record of payments and balances due for each rental.  This won't help with those last minute attempts to avoid an eviction but you can stipulate that payments are applied to past due balances first in all of your leases.  Then the $50 applies to the late fee and not the rent.  Talk with a local lawyer to see if that's a possible defense.

See my Cozy Property Management review for more details.

Good Luck!

AccidentalRental - A profitable resource for new landlords


Posts: 3,798
Reply with quote  #3 
Normally, if they make, and you accept (or your bank accepts), their last minute payment, it may negate an eviction.  This is just one reason we don't permit a direct deposit.  All it would take here is one $50 deposit, no matter how much they were behind, to stop an eviction.  Our state (and many others) don't allow you to accept any payments after filing an eviction.  We do allow a paypal deposit (which gives you notification of who it is from).  Otherwise, they need to pay by cash (in person), check or money order.

Posts: 5
Reply with quote  #4 
Agree, online rent collection will make a lot of these headaches go away. Digital tools like Rentigo also offer the added advantage of offering an app so you can check on the status of rent payments or your properties in general, on the go.

On the tenant side, these tools offer a handy way to send helpful reminders & easily stay connected (which tenants love). 

I recently wrote about the role of digital in property management on Real Estate Tech News here

Happy to know what you think or answer any other questions if you have them. 

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