Paging: Brad20K / Zero T
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Paging: Brad20K / Zero T (by Roy [AL]) Aug 11, 2017 5:46 AM
       Paging: Brad20K / Zero T (by S i d [MO]) Aug 11, 2017 6:39 AM
       Paging: Brad20K / Zero T (by LisaFL [FL]) Aug 11, 2017 6:58 AM
       Paging: Brad20K / Zero T (by Roy [AL]) Aug 11, 2017 7:46 AM
       Paging: Brad20K / Zero T (by LisaFL [FL]) Aug 11, 2017 8:05 AM
       Paging: Brad20K / Zero T (by Roy [AL]) Aug 11, 2017 8:21 AM
       Paging: Brad20K / Zero T (by Mike SWMO [MO]) Aug 11, 2017 10:46 AM
       Paging: Brad20K / Zero T (by Roy [AL]) Aug 11, 2017 12:43 PM
       Paging: Brad20K / Zero T (by RB [MI]) Aug 11, 2017 1:22 PM
       Paging: Brad20K / Zero T (by Roy [AL]) Aug 11, 2017 2:57 PM
       Paging: Brad20K / Zero T (by Vee [OH]) Aug 11, 2017 4:33 PM
       Paging: Brad20K / Zero T (by Danny [OH]) Aug 11, 2017 6:41 PM
       Paging: Brad20K / Zero T (by BRAD 20,000 [IN]) Aug 11, 2017 8:44 PM
       Paging: Brad20K / Zero T (by BRAD 20,000 [IN]) Aug 11, 2017 9:06 PM
       Paging: Brad20K / Zero T (by Dave [AL]) Aug 14, 2017 12:02 PM

Paging: Brad20K / Zero T (by Roy [AL]) Posted on: Aug 11, 2017 5:46 AM


Since you are the authority on Zero Tolerance, I need you to advise me here.

I have two vacancies coming at the end of this month. Of course, this means I will be taking on some new tenants in September. With these new tenants, I want to implement my first real Zero Tolerance rent payment policy,...which means rent paid on the 1st day and no grace period.

Zero Tolerance is not something you just write in your lease and assume the tenants will abide by it. It will have to be explained to the new tenants (like a parent giving precise instructions to a teenager) and the consequences of what will happen if rent is not paid on the 1st day of every month.

For the sake of this post only, I want you to assume I am your new tenant. As a new tenant, I am reading your lease and come across the paragraph on how rent is expected to paid on the 1st with no exceptions. Again, tell me 'word for word' how you explain your Zero Tolerance policy to new tennants,..without being threatening or condescending.

Again, if I can enforce a ZT policy with my next tenants, I will make some changes with my existing tenant pool. Currently, I have a 3 day grace period which my tenants are pushing the limits of. I want to eliminate this.

Paging: Brad20K / Zero T (by S i d [MO]) Posted on: Aug 11, 2017 6:39 AM

Well, I'm not Brad, but here's how I do it in case it helps.

I don't put any "special" language in the lease other than, "Rent is due on or before _______ at 6 PM. There is no grace period. LANDLORD may begin legal proceeding to terminate the rental agreement immediately once rent is late."

When we do the lease signing, I simply say that the rent is the owners' income and just like everyone expects their boss to pay them on time without any excuses, we expect our customers to do the same. Then we move on. I don't treat them like children or "talk down" to them.

The BIG thing is how you ENFORCE it. The day rent is late, out goes the "Rent?" text. If no response in 2 days, I'll do one phone call and leave a message, just in case someone did make a payment and I missed it (rare, has happened once in 4 years of accepting payments at my bank). At that point if I get them on the line or leave a message, I'm very direct. "Joe, as we said when signing the lease, the owners are expecting to be paid just like you'd expect your boss to pay you. We need money in the bank within 24 hours."

Then if no money...I file. Pretty straight forward.

Zero tolerance means I have a policy and I enforce it consistently regardless of excuses (valid or not). That policy may include a 3-day grace period like yours, or it may be like mine which is no grace period (i.e. fees start adding on the day after late), but I wait until the 7th day late before filing for eviction. Pro property managers in my town to file on the 5th, but I'm a nice guy and give 2 extra days. I do not tell tenants I wait until the 7th day late: it's just how I do it. They know to expect it ANY DAY after the due date. I don't tell them because I don't want them ducking the process server so I can get the money judgment if needed.

Where I'm going with this is you and Brad may have a different policy, but zero tolerance means you STICK TO that policy always and make zero exceptions. Maybe I should call my policy, "Zero Exceptions" vs. Zero Tolerance.

I think one reason Brad starts the day after is his state requires 3 day Pay or Quit notices. Missouri doesn't. So he has to get the ball rolling immediately or he ends up filing papers later than I do. I can wait a few extra days since no P or Q is required and I'm still on almost the same time line as Brad.

Paging: Brad20K / Zero T (by LisaFL [FL]) Posted on: Aug 11, 2017 6:58 AM

Exactly what Sid said.

I use Clearnow for rent collection so only have late payors infrequently.

Even if rent is paid on the due date if it's paid "outside of Clearnow" their is a $10 fee. Other late fees are $5 a day.

If I receive no explanation or forewarning that their draft is being cancelled as soon as I know it has been I post a 3 day notice. That always gets their attention.

I have no problems but I also screen well and have basically all good tenants.

If you make sure they have sufficient income from the get-go to afford the rent it greatly reduces late pays.

I don't think I've ever had a late pay that didn't pay on whatever the next Friday never more than a couple days late.

Paging: Brad20K / Zero T (by Roy [AL]) Posted on: Aug 11, 2017 7:46 AM


My interpretation of Zero Tolerance means "no texts, no phone calls (where's the rent?), blah, blah (that is tolerance or baby-sitting in my book). The stupidest question any LL can ask a tenant is "Where is the rent?".

It is stupid because "both parties already know the answer!!!'

Rent is due in my bank account on the 1st day of the month (unless it is Sunday or a holiday when the bank is closed). If it is not paid on the 1st, then the P/Q notice (7-day in my county) should be posted on the 2nd day.

Right now, I am waiting until the 7th or 8th day to post the P/Q notice. With Zero T, I want to post that notice on the 2nd but this will require time on my part and a willingness to play hard ball with the tenants.

Paging: Brad20K / Zero T (by LisaFL [FL]) Posted on: Aug 11, 2017 8:05 AM

Roy, it sounds like you already know what you're doing wrong.

You've trained your tenants to pay late by allowing it.

Post the notices on the 2nd and be prepared to follow through. That is the only way to retrain them.

I used to do what you do. The dates they paid just kept getting further and further late. So I changed my policy and require auto rent drafts and then no more problems.

You may have a lower quality of tenants who don't have bank accounts to draft. IDK. I don't take those kind of tenants due to the problems you describe.

Zero tolerance means expecting them to pay on the due date and not allowing them to pay late. If they refuse the only option is to find new tenants.

Paging: Brad20K / Zero T (by Roy [AL]) Posted on: Aug 11, 2017 8:21 AM

Lisa (FL)

Yes, I am fully aware of what I am doing wrong or what I could do better. I have a few tenants who are dirt poor and live on fixed incomes,..however, they always pay rent on the 1st day (or before). Each month, I ask myself how can I do get ALL of my tenants to pay on the 1st?

I have tried to use hefty late fees ($10.00/day) to encourage tenants to pay by the 3rd,...but that is not working. Each month I have tenants paying on the 7th with no late fees added. All of my tenants know that I will drop the hammer (P/Q notice) on them on 8th day.

Paging: Brad20K / Zero T (by Mike SWMO [MO]) Posted on: Aug 11, 2017 10:46 AM


Glad you ask this question.

This is something I have been thinking about. These post Help me better understand the process. I read and STUDY all the post on ZT.

In fact, just about 30 minutes ago, I explained the process to a tenant who said she needed until next week to make her payment. She said the electric company had lost her payment and was going to shut off her electricity come Monday. AND she had lost her receipt. Imagine that.


Paging: Brad20K / Zero T (by Roy [AL]) Posted on: Aug 11, 2017 12:43 PM

Mike SWMO,

What makes you think she is telling you the truth? Even if she it, this is not your problem.

True Zero T. means not listening or responding to all the B.S. that tenants will feed you for being late with rent.

Legally, all we can do with late payers is file for eviction. If they value a roof over their head, they will pay rent.

Paging: Brad20K / Zero T (by RB [MI]) Posted on: Aug 11, 2017 1:22 PM

Zero Tolerance :

Why should this apply to rent, only ?

Paging: Brad20K / Zero T (by Roy [AL]) Posted on: Aug 11, 2017 2:57 PM


What else do you have in mind?

Rent on the 1st is the first major hurdle for me. If can solve this one, everything else would be a walk in the park.

Paging: Brad20K / Zero T (by Vee [OH]) Posted on: Aug 11, 2017 4:33 PM

The basic thing you must do is erase grace - repeat that a few times, erase grace - erase grace - ERASE GRACE, remove any wording that appears to resemble a late or grace time allowance - THERE IS NO MORE GRACE, so in my lease the -full- rent payment must be recv at xyz bank before closing time on the 1st of every month, no reason to chase frogs anymore - it gets harder when the days are shorter (notice banks are in the money business, they have gates, cameras, guards and they have guns - clearly in the money business - OK) so find a bank who allows you to carry a few savings accounts and you make the suffix of the account names the address (getting easier now isn't it), this prevents harry from depositing into jerry rent (savings) account, so now that is out of the way you have to get ready for the exit (stage left if you think of Snagglepuss) by preparing a housing court pleading for each address - leave the money amount and names until time to use this set of papers (you will also have a blank set of court papers in each property folder for the next time), so a lot like painting you get the better finished product by way of preparation. And you will avoid blood pressure like I had 3-4 years ago.

Paging: Brad20K / Zero T (by Danny [OH]) Posted on: Aug 11, 2017 6:41 PM

Is this a real question or just having fun? Grass, %ss or Gas.....Nobody rides for free =)

Paging: Brad20K / Zero T (by BRAD 20,000 [IN]) Posted on: Aug 11, 2017 8:44 PM


Short answer because I am preparing a presentation RIGHT NOW on this for our LL Assoc meeting in the morning!

*It's the LL who must change.*

Stop accepting excuses and stick to the program. In a month or 2 even the worst offenders will stop giving excuses. We get what we allow. Stop allowing it.

Get mad and swear you'll never let anyone slide again because you KNOW how the amounts build and build, then they skip.

It helps to not answer the phone. All calls to to voicemail.


Longer answer:

Just this afternoon I signed a lease and my lease is clear:

"Rent is due on or before the date shown. Management does not accept partial or late payments. Please plan ahead."

I read this aloud to them as we go thru the orientation session.

Yes we must change their habits because their entire life as renters has consisted of LLs allowing excuses.

But the BIGGEST challenge I encounter is the LL. It took 18 months to get Wifey to change her habits with these folks. I STILL hear occasional slips where the office let someone wait until later. GRRR!!

I hear lots of LLs say it will never work. Baloney. It's the LL who must change, not the res. Our residents pay their other bills on time.

WE are ingrained with allowing excuses. WE are overcome with pity or sympathy. WE know times are tough. WE know we have money and can wait until next week and still eat. WE have an overpowering desire to "be nice".

Gotta change the script from "OK, pay me next week" to "That's rough. What will you do when the atty files eviction?" (and shut up!)

It's simple. The rent is due. If you don't pay the only legal avenue our state allows is to evict..I never woudl have believed it - they actually PAY!!

MY state does not require a P/Q notice before filing so our text says

"Reminder: Your rent is not paid. Pls pay or vacate within 3 days to avoid court eviction. Pls reply."

Here's proof it works. Of the few who are late after you set the new standard:

50% will pay all within 24/48 hours

25% pay all but the 3 days of late fees

12.5% vacate

12.5% are stubborn and ride out the court system.

So if 4 are late,

2 will pay all now,

1 will pay the rent owed,

1 will either vacate (not a bad thing for non-payers) or wait for the judge.

Just had one on Aug 1. He owed $1600. Tons of excuses, same ol same ol. I stuck to the script. He left several desperate sounding messages - each msg had a more serious reason for not paying.

48 hours later he paid the $1600.

Another angle that helps this work:

We push PayDayPlan from the start. This helps them plan. They are only looking for $172 instead of $650. Granny can help with that.

We allow them to switch to PayDayPlan for a minimum of 6 months. No, we do not set up weekly payments to solve the immediate issue.

My short turned long. In the end, just do it. Trust Good Ol Brad that it will work!

Your stress level and follow up calls will go waay down!


Paging: Brad20K / Zero T (by BRAD 20,000 [IN]) Posted on: Aug 11, 2017 9:06 PM


(more because you got my juices flowing!)

I approached my communications portal and consulted the Almighty and Powerful Intergoog seeking truth and wisdom from the All Knowing Source of Knowledge of All Things Legal.

It gave me (cue angelic choir)...Ala. Code 35-9A-421

It seems LLs in The Heart Of Dixie may "terminate the lease with no less than 7 days notice".

What every good legal beagle looks for is what it does NOT say. As always, Gotta know YOUR judge.

*I* read this as giving them a few days to respond then file. It will not go before the judge for a time period after filing. Just make sure the hearing is after the 7th day.

(BTW There is usually a weekend or holiday in the middle fo all this so the 7 days passes quickly.)

Your state's eviction process differs from mine so work this overlap of timing into your system.

Example, my state requires a 10 day Pay or Quit so we used to wait the full 10 days before filing. Lost a lot of time and rent! Our law did not say that. It says they cannot be EVICTED for 10 days. The court is the one who evicts, not me. Our court will not HEAR the case until this specified time has elapsed. SOOOO we give them the 3 day text (to get them motivated and usually solve the problem) we file on the 4th day, (we can FILE the day it's late) but the court always sets the HEARING out a minimum of 14 days. MY court will honor that 14 day scheduling delay as meeting the requirement.

Another: I remember your filing fees are high ($450??). Don't let that scare you. File and add it to their ledger. Have courage! (the Bible says "Fear not" many times!) My lease is clear: All monies received are applied to the unpaid balance. Any unpaid balance is considered unpaid rent and is grounds for eviction.

All the best!


Paging: Brad20K / Zero T (by Dave [AL]) Posted on: Aug 14, 2017 12:02 PM

Alabama is very different and not LL friendly when it comes to eviction.

1 We do not have a 3 Day pay or quit notice. It is a 7 day notice.


Tenant is late on the 2nd of the month. You must file a 7 day Notice that lease is being terminated.

On the eight day you go to the courthouse and file for unlawful detainer. Depending on which county you live in this can cost $260.

After paying the fee. It is then submited to the constable or serving agent. He has 30 to 45 days to serve the notice. Once the notice is served to the tenant they have 8 days to respond.

If the tenabt does not respond to the service then you get a court date to set the tenant out.

It can take up to 3 or 4 months

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