how do you collect rent money?

13 Replies

new here at BP i hope i found the right forum for this question. I've been collecting rent through Venmo out of convenience and for tracking payments. I would love some feedback on any Cons y'all see in using this platform and suggestions on better ways to collect payments. thanks. 

@Jeremy Hester how many units do you have? I know smaller Landlords that use Venmo but what a pain!

We use Buildium (a property management software that I believe BP gives you a discount for) that keeps track of all our financials. It was about $400/year to start but it saved me a lot of headaches when I first started out. You can also have it automatically post late fees so no more arguing with tenants. Just in late fees, the system has paid for itself. 

Best of luck!

I used Cozy.co. I started using them last summer and so far am pretty happy. I don't feel like their background check is as good as others I've used and am deciding if the hassle factor makes it worth changing to a different provider for that. I feel like knowing a report is getting run keeps a lot of people honest and upfront about what I'm going to find. 

I do my applications through them so I have all of this stuff in one place. I also set up my ads with pics and then copy them to other advertising venues. Keeps me from having to do duplicate work, just do minor editing. Easy to track what is owed and has been paid.

Free although it takes several days for ACH to transfer to my bank. You can pay to get it faster but I have plenty of float that as long as I know the tenant has made the transaction I don't care. Also gives the tenant the option to pay me with their credit card and they shoulder the fee. Not that I advocate paying the rent with a CC but honestly, some people need to and other do it to CC hack and the couple of bucks it costs works for them. Not my concern as long as I get the rent.

Late fees can auto post. Other charges can be billed. Maintenance requests can be made and tracked. Renters insurance can be purchased by tenant through them too.

If you have a lot of units I would go for a paid service but for my few units it works fine. I do all my accounting in Waves, a free accounting program. I'm an accountant and so far have found it can do what I need for such a small business.

@Cameron Tope thanks for the reply. I currently have 3 rentals but looking to get 3 more in the near future. Venom has worked for me so far but it seems unprofessional so i'm looking for something to match my new outlook on my rental properties. will check out Buildium

I do all cash and love it . No bs no partial payment no bounced checks No waiting around for money to clear no tenant filing a grievance and taking back the rent .. uncle Ben never jumped out of my pocket and he is good everywhere with tax incentives 

@Jeremy Hester

Probably depends on the size and volume of money you are collecting.

We give our tenants multiple options

1. Direct ACH

2. Monthly autodraft

3. Credit card payment

4. Drop off in office (with an Admin fee charged for this)

5. Mail it in

We want to give them zero excuses as to why they can not pay their rent

@Jeremy Hester Another reason for going more professional is that the software will send out the reminders that rent is due if the tenant has not setup automatic payments. Since switching to Cozy, I have never had to remind a single tenant that the rent is due.

Cozy here as well.  2 of mine have set up auto pay.  1 pushes the payment with Cozy each time, usually a day or 2 after the due date but before it's considered late...  The 4th still mails a money order in.  I give Cozy as my perferred option and mailing a check as a backup.  And I'd never turn down cash!

@Jeremy Hester Venmo is a great tool to collect rent with and is very popular with younger generations, who are also more likely to rent instead of buy. One con is that there is a limit to how much someone can transfer - this would only be a problem if rent is super high, or if one person is paying for all the tenants in the house. I think the limit is $3,000, but you can visit here for more info! You should be good in most scenarios I think.

I agree with everyone who has spoken for full service software for property management.  I use Smart Property Systems.  It has a tenant portal for each tenant separately.  My tenant can log into the portal, see the invoices, see a running balance of the rental account, see charges and see payments.  They enter their payment methods one time and each month they use the portal to pay rent.  Once they pay, the accounting for the whole process is automatically entered into all of the accounting data software sections.  So I get up to date reports which can be customized for performance and accounting.  There are many other benefits but you only asked about rent collection.  Smart Property Systems will make this easy for you and  your tenant and is less than $20 per month if only have one unit.