In today’s fast moving world, the traditional method of collecting delinquent rent is not effective. The numerous demands placed on property managers do not allow for dedication of the time and effort required to effectively pursue delinquent rent. Often, the missed rent is overlooked in lieu of other priorities, and evictions are not pursued.
Managing an Ongoing Problem
Traditional methods of delinquency collection are slow and time-consuming. While it is important to track rent payments to maintain financial stability, chasing down the delinquent rent is just not a priority when there are so many other daily tasks the property manager needs to address.
Hiring a person dedicated to address this issue is one common approach; but this is also a costly option. This person must be knowledgeable in the property’s rent collection practices, corporate polices, and any special clauses or terms of each tenant’s lease. Additionally, they must be familiar with the delinquent rent process for their jurisdiction, knowing where and when to send collection letters, when to proceed with an eviction filing, knowing what forms are required, and how to accurately complete and processed those forms. Once eviction becomes inevitable, the forms need to be served by a process server, lawyers are involved and still, collection of back rent is not guaranteed. The end result is a long and expensive process that takes time and resources away from other tasks.
So, what is the answer? Does the property manager focus on the daily tasks and pursue delinquent tenants when time allows? Is hiring a full-time person to handle delinquent rent a viable solution? Traditionally, these were the options available. Not an ideal solution to run a valued investment.
Finally, A Solution
Modern technology has merged with delinquency management to providing the tools property managers need to deal with delinquent rent with little disruption to the daily routine. Some of the features and services now available through automated solutions include:
Tracking of tenant rent charges and payments, analysis of the payment history, and determination when to proceed further
Auto-generated collection letters are sent via email and traditional postal mail
SMS texts sent to tenants with rent payment reminders.
Preparation and management of eviction documentation
GPS photo-tagging of the process service
These tools, when used together, create and efficient delinquent rent recovery system. Software has for years been used to track charges and payments. But more intelligent systems now perform automated analysis to determine how delinquent each tenant is. It can be set to automatically send out reminder letters for late rent, escalating to collection letters when needed. Modern software can help determine which forms are needed and then prepare the required forms, ensuring the right information is filed at the right time – every time.
Text message reminders are a great tool for the modern world. So often people don’t check the mail regularly, but they are constantly checking their mobile phone. Text messaging is a quick and effective method to gently remind tenants that the rent is due. These modern advances have made rent tracking and recovery efficient, allowing the property managers and landlords the much need to time to be more productive in the day-to-day tasks of running a multifamily housing unit.
GPS photo tagging of the process service is another valuable tool. With the use of GPS, there is a photo provided that is date and time stamped, along with the location of the photo, to serve as proof that the eviction papers were actually delivered to the delinquent tenant.
The eviction process is complicated and time consuming, but through the application of technology, the property manager no longer needs to be an expert in the eviction process. While the use of a lawyer is not eliminated, technology allows the property manager or landlord to do much of the work in house resulting in significantly lower legal fees.
These tasks used to be a full-time job. Today, technology has made delinquent rent collection easier and more efficient. Now, landlords and property managers can focus on running the business and keeping the units occupied and maintained; technology can take care of the rent recovery and eviction process.