10 Top Excuses for Late Rent Payment

1. I had to pay my other bills.

Though all bills are a concern, rent should still be a priority. If you do not have a roof over your head there will be no power or gas bill. Power and gas need to be paid along with other expenses, but rent should be paid first.

2. I lost my job.

Though losing your job is a concern, you still need to be able to pay rent. People should always have an emergency fund with enough in it to cover one to two months expenses at minimum. Losing your job should not mean that you do not have the money to pay your rent.

3. My car broke down and needed repairs.

Again, this is where and emergency fund comes into play. Other expenses that crop up should not trump the rent payment. It is important to have some money put aside for emergencies so that an unexpected expense will not mean that rent is neglected.

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4. It’s in the mail.

This is a very frustrating excuse as there are ways to pay rent that do not rely on the postal system. Setting up online payments is quick and easy and very efficient. If someone is mailing a rent check, they should make sure to mail it a week in advance to ensure it arrives by the day rent is due.

5. Work shorted me on my paycheck.

Again, if this is a frequent occurrence for you, you should have funds set aside to cover emergencies like this. If you work at an hourly rate there is also the possibility that you will not get as many hours one month and you need to be prepared for such a situation.

6. We paid for repairs.

If there are repairs to be made, the financing of those repairs should be discussed ahead of time so that both parties are clear on how it will be handled. Perhaps the tenants paid for some repairs and it was agreed to take the amount off of rent as long as receipts were provided. If you are the tenant and just went ahead without your landlord’s knowledge, then he may not consider himself responsible for the costs. Make sure to discuss any repairs ahead of time and come to an agreement.

7. The first was a Sunday.

Regardless of what day of the week rent day falls on, it should be paid on that day. If it is a Sunday you can pay it ahead of time if that is easier or you can pay it online on the Sunday. Using email transfers makes doing banking any day of the week very simple and convenient.

8. You have not completed the repairs we requested.

Though it is bad form for a landlord not to take care of maintenance issues in a timely manner, it does not mean that rent can be withheld. If there are repairs that are required hopefully they will be completed but rent is still due regardless.

9. I came by to pay it but you were not home/closed/not available.

If rent is paid to a company and you will be going in person it is your job to get there during business hours. If something will prevent you from going when they will be open it is best to choose another method of payment.

If you are paying to an individual, call the day before to set up an appointment or find out if there is a place that you can safely leave a check if there will not be anyone at home.

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10. I gave rent to my (husband, friend etc.) and he said he dropped it off for me.

Rent needs to be paid by someone who can do what they say they will do. If you know your husband or whoever you have put in charge gets busy or distracted then it is best to arrange for someone else to take the money over.

There are several excuses for why people have not paid their rent on time and while some of them may be legitimate, sometimes it is just an excuse to buy a little more time. Late rent payments can be very frustrating for property owners and good tenants pay their rent on time. A landlord may be understanding with a long-term tenant if something goes awry and rent has always been on time but it is also important to be prepared for emergencies so that if something does come up, you still have rent in your back pocket.