When it comes to paying rent, many tenants believe it doesn’t matter how they send the money. As long as the money leaves their bank account, rent is paid. However, that’s not always true. Unfortunately, things can happen, and payments can get lost, leaving someone–either you or your landlord–responsible. If you want to avoid any mishaps while paying your rent, it’s best to choose the safest rent payment method. Here are some of the best and worst payment methods for tenants to keep in mind.
There are tons of different ways you can pay your rent these days. With today’s technology, you can nearly do everything online. However, that’s not always the safest way to transfer money. But meeting up with your landlord once a month to give them the cash in person isn’t always practical either. Keep reading to learn about the different rent payment methods and which one is best for your situation.
Payment Methods for Tenants and Landlords to Avoid
Some of the worst rent payment methods include:
- Peer-to-Peer Payment Methods
- Face-to-Face Pickup
- Money Order
One of the very worst payment methods is cash. Although it can save you bank fees and may be more convenient, it’s best to avoid this method at all costs. Cash isn’t a very good rent payment method because landlords or tenants have no proof of payment.
Additionally, cash is easy to lose, resulting in a partial or late rent payment, which can then result in fines. If you lose it all, there’s not much you can really do to track where it went. So, if someone steals it or you miscount the money, you could have to cover some or all of the payment again.
Peer-to-Peer Payment Methods
Another payment method to avoid is peer-to-peer payments like PayPal, Venmo, or Zelle. Although the transactions are easy and instant, you must set up an account, and there may be additional fees each time you send money. For landlords, there are even more reasons to avoid these types of transactions. For example, there isn’t a way to set up payment reminders, and transactions aren’t always secure.
Additionally, problems can arise if tenants accidentally pay the wrong person. Although many peer-to-peer systems often take the sender’s side during disputes, it could result in you losing money should something go wrong.
Dropping your rent money directly to your landlord may seem feasible, but it’s typically more of a hassle. Whether your landlord comes to you or you drop off the money at your landlord’s office, it can be hard to make time out of a busy day to do so.
If you’re already headed to meet your landlord for a maintenance issue or rental concern, it could be more convenient to just give them your rent money when you see them. Otherwise, making an extra trip to pay rent each month can be time-consuming and unnecessary.
Getting a money order or cashier’s check is a complete inconvenience for most tenants. Although it’s a secure way to pay rent, you’ll have to travel to the bank to get the money order and possibly pay a fee just to obtain it. Then, you have to mail it or drop it off at your landlord’s office.
With the advances in today’s technology, there’s no reason to make extra trips to the bank to get a money order. So to keep things simple for tenants and landlords, here are some of the better rent payment methods available today.
Best Rent Payment Methods for Tenants and Landlords
Some of the best ways to pay rent each month include:
- Direct Deposit
- Rent Collection Apps
- Credit Card
One of the easiest rent collection methods is direct deposit. This method leaves a digital trail, making tracking and recording payments easy. Additionally, setting up automatic withdrawals each month simplifies the process of paying rent even more.
Most landlords and rental management companies offer direct deposit payment options for tenants. However, one issue with this method is that tenants may incur late fees if they don’t have enough money in their account to cover the rent payment.
Although it’s not as common, paying with a credit card can offer a few benefits to tenants. For instance, you can earn cash back or rewards for making large payments with a credit card. It can also act as a backup option for tenants who are low on cash when their rent payment is due.
It doesn’t pose many benefits to landlords, but allowing credit card payments could help a tenant avoid a late fee and ensure you get your money on time.
Rent Collection Apps
Using rent collection apps is ultimately the best way to send rent payments safely and securely. Like direct deposit, tenants can set up automatic payments and have their money withdrawn at the same time each month. Additionally, most applications accept credit card payments, debit cards, and bank transfer payments.
However, because it’s an online payment method, there may be some security issues, depending on your chosen application. Ultimately, to make paying rent simple, contact your local Washington DC property management company to see what options they offer.
Tips for Setting Up Auto-Pay and Reminders
Setting up automatic payments and reminders depends on your rent collection application. Some of the top rent collection services include:
With each of these services, you can set up auto-pay, so your money comes out of your account directly when your rent is due. In addition, most of these applications allow tenants to pay using a credit card or bank transfer from any US bank. However, using a credit card may cost you a small fee.
Landlords and tenants can work together using these services to set up payment reminders, late fees, and more. Additionally, some of these services allow you to split payments between roommates, making it easier for landlords to collect the entire payment at once.
Another great aspect of rent collection apps is that you can report payments to credit bureaus, which could help improve your credit score when you pay rent on time each month.
Importance of Keeping Good Payment Records
Keeping accurate payment records is crucial for landlords and tenants for several reasons. Not only does it give you peace of mind, but it can help either party in the case of a payment dispute. After all, you don’t want to be caught in a situation where you can’t prove your rental payment, resulting in a fee or dispute with your landlord.
For landlords, keeping records is a crucial part of the rental business. After all, you want to keep track of income and expenses for each property. You don’t have to track your finances manually when you hire professional property management. Instead, having a great management team on your side allows you to feel confident in your business finances.
Bay Property Management Group offers comprehensive rental management services to landlords in Baltimore, Philadelphia, Northern Virginia, and Washington DC. Contact us today if you could use management services for your business.