Rent Collection Methods for technology adverse tenants

11 Replies

I closed on a 12 unit apartment recently and just starting to get the inherited tenants (11/12) onto Hemlane to pay and communicate. There is a few old tenants, some with dementia and one that doesn't even have a cell phone. How can I collect rent from these tenants without them paying me at my home address? PayNearMe is not for small landlords like myself. What other options are there? 

- ACH - no way (possible to pay partial rent payments)

- Check, they have to mail to my address

- Pickup - I am in the military, could be deployed, etc...

Thank you, and hopefully there are options like paynearme, that was recommended in the managing rental properties. I will try to get some of the older tenants that are willing to pay online. Some have been living there for 30 years.

You could get a P.O. Box, and have the tenants send the checks there. A friend or spouse could check the P.O. Box while you're deployed. 

@Paul Kuhn we have a 12 unit with a mixture of tenants several of whom have little use for tech. We have to visit the building to drain quarters out of the laundry so we have a lock box in the laundry room to get checks from the Luddites. Works great! The tenants in our duplexes are all younger and pay by ACH. As long as all my tenants are paying how they pay is no big deal!

Not everyone has a cell phone or needs one.  Same with computers.  They can write you out post dated cheques that you can cash on the first of the month when rent is due.  If you aren't there to deposit the cheques because you are out of the country, then ask someone to take them for the bank for you.  I get a year's worth from one of my tenants and she mails them to me.

As Bjorn said, if you have things like on site laundry that you need to deal with, you can time your trips to correspond with rent payments,

PO Box or a local shipping store/UPS store offer boxes as well.  We have used this for years successfully. Also, depositing directly into a bank works for some folks as well, just have to be sure they write their name on the deposit.  We generally hand out deposit slips pre-filled w/their address to make it simple.  Same with checks, can give them payment coupons.  Older folks are used to that sort of arrangement.  

@Paul Kuhn

There are plenty of ways to handle this.  Its not like before the Internet rent was never collected before.

One, be sure that you can limit collection to online methods.  Also, make sure you are consistent so you don't get yourself into a discrimination issue.

Aside from the methods addressed above, you could hire a property manager --- honestly, not my preference either.

Some of my tenants actually deposit the funds direct.  I gave them my account number (I have a separate account into which I deposit rent) and they have been apparently going to a branch of my bank and depositing for many years now.

You may get some to convert to using Zelle which is built in to just about all, if not all, banking systems.  Its free for both parties.  Anybody who says the BANK doesn't let me do it means there is some sort of lock on their account which generally tells me they have some sort of banking problem.

Are you working with a real estate agent?  My agent helped out a bunch when I was TDY....  Kinda depends on your relationship and how much business you are doing perhaps.

Hope that helps.  Good luck.

1. They should be able to set up direct deposit payments through the banks. Talk to your bank and see if they have a form and instructions.

2. Set up an account local to the rentals. Provide the tenant with deposit slips. They can drive to the bank and deposit the funds directly into your account.

Thank you all for the replies. With Direct deposit, I am worried about "forced" acceptance of partial payments, since I cannot refuse them. I was hoping there were more low tech options, such as a service at Walmart, or such that they could pay, and the service would direct deposit into my account.