Lease wording
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Lease wording (by RR78 [VA]) Jun 11, 2019 8:05 PM
       Lease wording (by AllyM [NJ]) Jun 11, 2019 8:15 PM
       Lease wording (by DJ [VA]) Jun 11, 2019 11:20 PM
       Lease wording (by DJ [VA]) Jun 11, 2019 11:46 PM
       Lease wording (by BRAD 20,000 [IN]) Jun 12, 2019 12:43 AM
       Lease wording (by BRAD 20,000 [IN]) Jun 12, 2019 12:46 AM
       Lease wording (by RR78 [VA]) Jun 12, 2019 7:52 AM

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Lease wording (by RR78 [VA]) Posted on: Jun 11, 2019 8:05 PM

We have a fine tuned lease we have used for years and has always worked very well.

I am changing my lease a little and seem to have a little brain fog where it does not sound quite right.

Appreciate any suggestions if this looks right.

First the reason is to protect from recent new laws. Will allow Judges to allow tenants 4 months to pay off a past due balance.

But Judges will not have the option if Tenant is a chronic late payer. Like being late 3 times in a year.

So before we had the rent do on the 1 st and late with a fee after the 5 th. Then sent 5 day Pay or Quit on the 6th.

Almost all of our possible problem tenants pay on the 5 th. In their minds it is due on the 5th.

So we wish to make it clear the rent is late on the 2nd. Most will still pay on the 5 th which we live with. But they would not qualify for the 4 month program.

My new wording is below this line. Thanks

Rent is due on the 1st of the month. If not received by the 1 st. The payment will be considered late and a pay or quit late notice can be sent with lessee in default. The late fee will not actually charged until the payment is 4 days late. If any part of the rent or account balance is not received by the fifth (5 th) day of the month, a late charge equal to 10% of the total monthly rent payment will be added. If Lessee is in default, the LESSOR may reenter the premises and the unpaid portion of the rent for the full term of the lease becomes due and payable immediately. This same late charge (10% of monthly rent) will also apply to any other charges or payments past due.

Lease wording (by AllyM [NJ]) Posted on: Jun 11, 2019 8:15 PM

Just put it in plain English. Rent is due on the 1st of the month. It is late on the 2nd day of the month. If you are four day's late we are charging you a late fee on the 5th that is ten percent of your rent and it is added to your rent. IF you don't pay the rent the landlord (lessor) we can re enter the apartment and you must pay the unpaid portion of the rent for the full term of the lease immediately. If you have any other late charges or payments you owe ten pecent of that also.

Lease wording (by DJ [VA]) Posted on: Jun 11, 2019 11:20 PM

It sounds like you are in one of the eviction avoidance test cities - as am I. Which one?. (I'm in Hampton - you nearby?) That takes effect NEXT July, 2020. However, that is a separate issue from when rent is late, and late fees.

I recently attended a very good training session by an attorney lobbyist who worked on drafting the new VRLTA. His info was very interesting, as were the stated standard (BAD/ pro-tenant!) practices of different Realtor managers who were there.

We are not required (yet) to give a grace period - so why do it? Like you have seen, that just tells the tenant it is OK to pay late. The VERY next day after rent is due, I deliver a notice of unpaid rent that demands a late fee be paid along with the overdue rent.

One clause from my Rental agreement is below, as an example.

"D. Late Fee. In the event any rent or other payment due hereunder shall not be paid when due, then - in addition to any and all other rights or remedies Landlord shall have - Tenant shall pay Landlord a late payment fee of ten percent (10%) of the amount of such late payment. This amount is $ . This late fee must be paid immediately, as additional rent. Remember, MONIES RECEIVED ARE APPLIED FIRST TO OUTSTANDING BALANCES, IF ANY, AND THEN TO THE CURRENT RENT."

Lease wording (by DJ [VA]) Posted on: Jun 11, 2019 11:46 PM

Oh! And don't be confused. When / what you charge regarding a late fee does not influence the implementation of the "eviction diversion program"(edp).

In very broad summary: the edp takes effect when you take a tenant to court for eviction. The tenant must present to the judge "good reason" for having unpaid rent - and have "sufficient income" to make payments, must bring 25% of the amount owed with them to court, will be given 3 months to pay the other 75% in addition to their regular rent, may not be late with any of those payments, and may not repeatedly use the edp. Of course, there are a lot more details, but that's the general gist of it.

Leave it up to the free tenant lawyers to explain it to them and make sure they do everything needed. I think it is doubtful that many will qualify & pay the first 25%. But if they do, I think it's unlikely they will be able to make the payments. So, for practical purposes, it looks like the landlord will lose another month rent while waiting longer to get possession - but not as as bad as I thought it could be when I first heard about it.

The Realtor managers seemed to think it was great and only a 2-3 week delay in eviction was no big deal (=not costing them anything). They also are proponents of NOT removing the tenant's belongings at sheriff lockout (an option here), but instead let them come back to get it out of the house - so the tenant won't be embarrassed/ have stuff taken when it's put on the curb for all the neighbors to see.

These are the "professional" property managers out there. Ugh!

Sorry - kinda got off topic there : )

Lease wording (by BRAD 20,000 [IN]) Posted on: Jun 12, 2019 12:43 AM


Get rid of grace periods. Period.

They only confuse the res - "Your rent is due on the first and that's when we expect it to be paid on time! But it's really not late until the 6th so you can pay it anytime you want and it's not really late, but it better be here on the first, but we won't so anything about it until the 6th or 7th, maybe even the 10th. Ya know - whenever"

Mine is simple:

Rent is due on or before the date shown on page one (we offer PayDayPlans so due dates vary). A late fee of $5 per day is added after that date and continues until the rent is fully paid.

Management does not accept late or partial payments. Unpaid rent will automatically trigger a sheriff's eviction. Please plan ahead.

We get all our rents.


Lease wording (by BRAD 20,000 [IN]) Posted on: Jun 12, 2019 12:46 AM

PS My judge says if our SOP (Standard Operating Procedure) is to allow a grace period HE must allow the same. So if he orders them out on the 10th they can stay until the 15th.


Lease wording (by RR78 [VA]) Posted on: Jun 12, 2019 7:52 AM


I understand what you are saying and agree. Nice clean and simple.

But, This is where I have to consider what a Judge here would consider reasonable and fair.

They are used to grace periods and a 10% late fee. Every Lease I have seen over the years and the old standard Va. realtors lease has the same.

Even with a solid lease. Looking to blend in and seem reasonable with no surprises for a Judge. That he feels the need to look for others.

Most of my cases are done in 2 or 3 minutes once in front of a Judge.

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