The question this week for veteran landlord and property manager Hank Rossi is whether you “have  to have a grace period in your rental agreement.” Hank answers questions from other landlords and property managers around the country about their rentals.

Dear Landlord Hank: Do You Have A Grace Period In Your Rental Agreement For Rent Payment?


Dear Landlord Bill,

Yes, I do have a grace period in my lease.

I set up all rents to be due on the first and late by the 4th so that is the grace period.

If someone pays after the 4th, a late fee is due. If I haven’t received the rent by the 5th, I contact the tenant via phone, text and email. I want to see when they’ve sent the rent.

If I don’t get an immediate response, I put a three-day notice on their door, if I can’t personally hand it to them.

A three-day notice is a legal document stating that the tenant has to either pay rent or deliver possession of the unit within three days. If the tenant doesn’t comply with this notice eviction proceedings will be started- three days exclude weekends and holidays.

Now the ball is in the tenants court. If I don’t hear from them, and they haven’t moved out after the three days have passed, eviction proceeding begin.

  • Don’t do anything to harm your case in court if it goes that way.
  • Don’t treat these tenants differently
  • Don’t turn off utilities or fail to maintain the property.

It’s strictly business as usual. There could be a reasonable and true issue with why you haven’t received the rent. The tenant could be in the hospital or incapacitated somehow.

Keep an open mind but follow procedure. Try to have your tenants pay via electronic transfer of funds. There is never an issue with mail being lost, or someone forgetting the rent is due, etc.

We have 99% of our tenants set up that way and it’s stress free.


Hank Rossi

Visit Hank’s website here.

Other recent Dear Landlord Hank posts you may have missed:

If A Good Tenant Loses A Job How Long Before You Evict Them?

How Do You Raise Rent For A Long-Time Tenant?

 How Do You Know When To Change Property Managers?

 Where Do You Draw The Line On Normal Wear And Tear?

Dear Landlord Hank: Do You Conduct Rental Inspections? How Often?[/fusion_text][/fusion_builder_column][/fusion_builder_row][/fusion_builder_container]