Beware of Cozy, the Landlord Site

67 Replies

I thought I'd try Cozy.co this time around after hearing recommendations from others on Bigger Pockets. It was a big mistake. Their application process was fine and their screening reports good. It's their money handling that is terrible. They say it will take a maximum of 5 days to process payments, but they keep pushing them back and pushing them back. After a tenant paid a deposit and first month's rent early in November, I have still yet to see a dime of it from Cozy. Caveat emptor and read all of the fine print before you even consider trying them. At this point, I can only assume that they are a scam site. 

Carolyn

Well.. hundreds of BP members can verify that Cozy isn't a scam site. I've never had a payment "pushed back." Perhaps you should reach out to their support team before bashing them here? 

I've used them for years with zero issues.  Many other BP users have as well.  They're hardly a "scam site".

I see you're located outside of the U.S.  Do you have a U.S. bank account?  Because according to Cozy's website they can only process payments to and from U.S. bank accounts.  If you already saw that and have a U.S. bank account, try reaching out to their support team for assistance.

@Carolyn Guertin I have read hundreds of posts about Cozy and none of them complained about this issue. I recommend you contact their customer support and determine exactly why your funds are being held. Please update us with their response.

I have had this happen a couple of times. 

Several different reasons as to why you are seeing this:

1.  Tenant does not have the funds available.

2.  Tenant has cancelled payment.

3.  Tenant has closed the account.

I don't think you were scammed by Cozy---you were scammed by the tenant!  I never use Cozy to collect 1st month's rent and deposit.  I always get the money order or cashier's check in hand.  Cozy has a huge lag time, like you said, 5 days.  That leaves it open for tenant abuse as you have seen.  I actually will disable a tenant's Cozy account if they do not pay on the 1st (meaning I don't get paid until the 5th or 6th, which in my opinion in not good because I want the 1st, but I will accept it for good, timely tenants) because it will mean I will get the payment REALLY LATE.  Also, if there is a cancellation event like you have seen, I will disable it and then they just have to have rent in my account on the 1st.

Pretty aggressive post. Many of us have been thrilled with Cozy. Beyond actually contacting them, you might have simply asked if anyone has had this experience or has any idea what's going on. Instead you slag them. Not cool. I do have personal interest in this: I don't want Cozy to go away in dumpster fire of unsubstantiated social media bombthrowing!  Sadly, it's way too easy these days to damage a good company's reputation. 

I echo the others. It sounds like you're being played by the tenant, not Cozy. I've used Cozy for a couple of years with no problems. It sounds like the tenant is scheduling the payment and then changing it.
@Carolyn Guertin Cozy is a very well designed product and legitimate business. Not a scam. They were actually just purchased by Co-star (same company that owns loopnet) for $60M

This is my only experience with them, and it has not been a good one. My account is in the U.S. and this property is in Fort Worth. The checks have cleared my tenant's account (who runs a financial planning firm), and I can see that on Cozy. Cozy's customer service says this is the case, and has repeatedly given me dates on which the checks will be deposited and they still haven't arrived. I won't use them again, but it's good to hear from other people how and when they use them. I am relieved to know that most people haven't had problems with them. I guess I'll have to get a lawyer as a next step. 

@Carolyn Guertin You can look at your Tennant's payment on the website and it will tell you the day it will be deposited In your account. In 2 years I have never had that display show the wrong days. I agree the lag time with payments could be an issue for a landlord that is running on a shoe string budget.
Originally posted by @Carolyn Guertin :

This is my only experience with them, and it has not been a good one. My account is in the U.S. and this property is in Fort Worth. The checks have cleared my tenant's account (who runs a financial planning firm), and I can see that on Cozy. Cozy's customer service says this is the case, and has repeatedly given me dates on which the checks will be deposited and they still haven't arrived. I won't use them again, but it's good to hear from other people how and when they use them. I am relieved to know that most people haven't had problems with them. I guess I'll have to get a lawyer as a next step. 

lawyer would be like smashing a bug with a sledge hammer.. and cost you as much as your rent your trying to collect. 

there are certainly places to use lawyers but trying to collect 1000 to 1500 dollars is not one of them 

@Carolyn Guertin Here is a reply I received from their customer service team earlier this year when I had some questions about the 5 day deposit time. Might he helpful to you and might not.

Hey Matt,

Thanks for your follow up and the kind words! I'm glad we've been helpful.

So, a little context on our payments: Cozy's free payment method uses the Automated Clearing House (ACH) payment network to process payments. The way that process works is that three business days are required for our payment processor to debit funds from a tenant's account, and then within the next two business days those funds are deposited to your account. Cozy doesn't ever hold or float funds--the funds remain in the ACH network the entire time.

I totally understand that five business days is longer than ideal for many landlords, but unfortunately this is the standard that is put in place by the ACH payment processing network, and we don't have any way to control or expedite that. The ACH network is what allows us to provide free payments to our customers.

@Mindy Jensen is there a fix in the works to let Android users format paragraphs and stuff on the app? The above post was broke down really well before I hit send lol.
Originally posted by @Matt P. :
@Carolyn Guertin Here is a reply I received from their customer service team earlier this year when I had some questions about the 5 day deposit time. Might he helpful to you and might not.

Hey Matt,

Thanks for your follow up and the kind words! I'm glad we've been helpful.

So, a little context on our payments: Cozy's free payment method uses the Automated Clearing House (ACH) payment network to process payments. The way that process works is that three business days are required for our payment processor to debit funds from a tenant's account, and then within the next two business days those funds are deposited to your account. Cozy doesn't ever hold or float funds--the funds remain in the ACH network the entire time.

I totally understand that five business days is longer than ideal for many landlords, but unfortunately this is the standard that is put in place by the ACH payment processing network, and we don't have any way to control or expedite that. The ACH network is what allows us to provide free payments to our customers.

Matt if this is a free service where do they make their money is there a one time fee to get started ???   

@Jay Hinrichs No fees to get started. They offer other parts of their property management services like applications and screening for a cost. They also charge like 2 bucks if you want a payment in 3 days instead of 5.
Originally posted by @Matt P. :
@Jay Hinrichs I haven't paid them a dime in the 2 years I have used them.

 do they take a service fee from the tenant ??? 

Originally posted by @Matt P. :
@Jay Hinrichs I haven't paid them a dime in the 2 years I have used them.

is there a reason you don't simply set up your own ach with your tenant..   just curious.  

Originally posted by @Jay Hinrichs :

Matt if this is a free service where do they make their money is there a one time fee to get started ???   

Like all payment processing services, including payroll companies, they make money on the arbitrage between getting the funds and sending them out.  They invest in overnight and two day money market funds and rake in MILLIONS doing so. Very very lucrative business. 

Also, fwiw, it does not take 5 days for ACH transactions to clear..  it is over night if you are funding business day to business day. Their language allows them to make more money off your funds. 

Originally posted by @Mary Mitchell :
Originally posted by @Jay Hinrichs:

Matt if this is a free service where do they make their money is there a one time fee to get started ???   

Like all payment processing services, including payroll companies, they make money on the arbitrage between getting the funds and sending them out.  They invest in overnight and two day money market funds and rake in MILLIONS doing so. Very very lucrative business. 

Also, fwiw, it does not take 5 days for ACH transactions to clear..  it is over night if you are funding business day to business day. Their language allows them to make more money off your funds. 

well to sell for  60 million there had to be some revenue some where..  :)

Originally posted by @Jay Hinrichs :
Originally posted by @Matt P.:
@Jay Hinrichs I haven't paid them a dime in the 2 years I have used them.

is there a reason you don't simply set up your own ach with your tenant..   just curious.  

ACH is fantastic and how I recieve rent from all tenants. However, it does require a business account with cash holdings and also good enough credit for the bank to have a LOC on file to protect their downside.

@Jay Hinrichs they only take a service fee from the Tennant from a credit card payment. Setting up ACH is in the cards I just haven't looked into it to much since I'm only running 8 doors currently. Once I scale a little more I'll do it for sure.

@Jay Hinrichs i was the controller for a startup that sold for about that. That pricing is probably a net income valuation at 40-50x earnings.   Not bad for stake holders 

Just started using them recently and had no problems so far with two properties/tenants payments. the tenant on the other hand mistakenly double paid one month! the 5 day payment is a long wait, but otherwise has been good for me. one less thing to remember to schedule :)

Originally posted by @Mary Mitchell :
Originally posted by @Jay Hinrichs:

Matt if this is a free service where do they make their money is there a one time fee to get started ???   

Like all payment processing services, including payroll companies, they make money on the arbitrage between getting the funds and sending them out.  They invest in overnight and two day money market funds and rake in MILLIONS doing so. Very very lucrative business. 

Also, fwiw, it does not take 5 days for ACH transactions to clear..  it is over night if you are funding business day to business day. Their language allows them to make more money off your funds. 

 Bingo. I process ACH payments (both pulls from tenants and sending to owners) directly through my bank, and its 1 day.

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