Payments applied
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Payments applied (by Steve [MA]) Feb 14, 2019 6:06 AM
       Payments applied (by Smokowna [MD]) Feb 14, 2019 6:19 AM
       Payments applied (by WMH [NC]) Feb 14, 2019 8:59 AM
       Payments applied (by Johnny B. [MA]) Feb 14, 2019 9:00 AM
       Payments applied (by S i d [MO]) Feb 14, 2019 9:03 AM
       Payments applied (by Johnny B. [MA]) Feb 14, 2019 9:07 AM
       Payments applied (by Moshe [CA]) Feb 14, 2019 9:21 AM
       Payments applied (by RentsDue [MA]) Feb 14, 2019 10:53 AM
       Payments applied (by Vee [OH]) Feb 14, 2019 6:40 PM
       Payments applied (by Steve [MA]) Feb 14, 2019 8:02 PM
       Payments applied (by CGB [MI]) Feb 15, 2019 4:01 AM

Payments applied (by Steve [MA]) Posted on: Feb 14, 2019 6:06 AM

Frequently I read postings about tenants who are current on current month's rent but still owe for previous month, late fees, billed repairs, utilities, etc. To avoid this you should have a clause in your rental agreements stating how monies received are applied. As part of my clause about RENT in addition to the amount of rent due date, return check info, late fees, etc I use the following to address how monies received are applied.

The Landlord shall apply all monies received from the Tenant first to any non-rent obligations of Tenant (including but not limited to , late fees, returned check fees, constable / sheriff fees, court fees, repairs, and disposal fees) then to delinquent rent and lastly to current rent / use & occupancy charges. Tenant agrees that this application of monies by Landlord takes precedence over any designation Tenant may write on a check or a money order unless agreed to in writing by the Landlord.


Payments applied (by Smokowna [MD]) Posted on: Feb 14, 2019 6:19 AM

Thank you.

(I have writing in my lease which states in who's name the utilities will be in. Years back I had teni agree that yes, they would pay the utilities however I was to pay them first.

My writing isn't good enough to share but I wanted to share the dilemma as it came up then).


Payments applied (by WMH [NC]) Posted on: Feb 14, 2019 8:59 AM

Read your state laws first. NC specifically forbids that kind of language - LL is obligated to apply rent money to RENT and not to any other fees, especially late fees. It is spelled out very carefully in state statutes.

Payments applied (by Johnny B. [MA]) Posted on: Feb 14, 2019 9:00 AM

Thanks Steve. I already have this in my rental agreement, but your wording is better than mine. Iíll have to update mine!

Payments applied (by S i d [MO]) Posted on: Feb 14, 2019 9:03 AM

I have never understood this bizarre accounting practice. How can a tenant be "current" on February and not have paid December or January?

First off, I don't let tenants get more than 1 week behind, so that kind of fixes the problem right there. ;-)

Also, each tenant has an account. There is a "Balance due." It includes EVERYTHING: all rent, late fees, pet fees, damage fees, ELT fees, etc.

We have to do a little math if/when we end up in court because the judge wants to see it split out, but it's not difficult. In the end, money owed is money owed, and money paid is money paid.

Payments applied (by Johnny B. [MA]) Posted on: Feb 14, 2019 9:07 AM

Wow WMH[NC]! I think this is the first time Iíve heard of a favorable lease clause that a Massachusetts landlord can use that another state forbids.

Payments applied (by Moshe [CA]) Posted on: Feb 14, 2019 9:21 AM

In general, money paid for a specific purpose must be used for that purpose. What is usually at issue is only whether or not there was agreement between the parties as to the purpose of the payment. Statute or not, a judge will usually apply that principle.

If the tenant writes "February Rent" on the memo line of a check, and the landlord accepts it, then he is obligated to use the money for February rent.

Payments applied (by RentsDue [MA]) Posted on: Feb 14, 2019 10:53 AM

I have a similar clause. Lawyer who spoke at LL meeting said I couldnít include sheriff/court fees. I strongly feel that lawyer was incorrect. She made it sound like the only allowable things were things that would be allowed to come out of SD. I kept the clause in lease.

Payments applied (by Vee [OH]) Posted on: Feb 14, 2019 6:40 PM

If your manager applied the funds and gives a reciept showing this you should be OK if it is also shown in the lease, in my area you can not collect for any court officer before filing, the eviction bailiff fees are added on by the judge when you win there.

Payments applied (by Steve [MA]) Posted on: Feb 14, 2019 8:02 PM

Vee, in MA in order to start a non payment eviction we have to serve & be able to prove that the tenant received their 14 day notice. There are 2 different notices one for term tenants aka yearly lease & another for MTM tenancies. These notices have very specific wording & type size.

I normally serve these myself by having the tenants sign & date 2 copies one original for them & another original for me. If the tenants cooperate by signing it saves them a $50.00+ process serving fee. If they don't cooperate then this fee is immediately entered into their rent ledger. Any monies received after this are first applied towards these fee then any other charges. In order to preserve our evictions rights & not restart the time line we must give them a receipt stating that the monies are being used for use & occupancy.

Once the 14 days are up our next step is to summons them into court. This summons can only be served by an authorized constable or the sheriff's department. The fee for this service including the summons & court filing fees can't be added to their bill until after the case has gone to court. It seems like the 2nd part of our process is similar to yours. --96.237.xx.xx

Payments applied (by CGB [MI]) Posted on: Feb 15, 2019 4:01 AM

Moshe, if such a clause is not against state laws, and is agreed upon at lease signing by both parties, why would a tenant have the right to unilaterally alter the lease by writing in the memo line of a check?

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