What Should Landlords Do If A Tenant Bounces A Check?

Performance Property Real Estate Question

Q: My tenant wrote me a check to pay his rent and the check bounced. What should I do? Eric, Orlando, FL.

A: The best way to deal with situations like this is to have a property management policy in place that is written in the lease you have your tenants sign that addresses this potential issue before it actually happens.

Now, if done correctly your lease will entitle you to charge a reasonable fee that should cover your bank’s bounced check charge, and then a little more for the hassle of dealing with the problem. I charge tenants a fee for writing a bad check–it’s written into my lease and I also stop accepting rent by check after a tenant bounces one. Regarding how much of fee to charge, remember that as a landlord, a bounced check costs you more than the fee your bank charges you, it also costs you time which is your most precious and limited asset.

Thanks for your question, Eric. For more real estate information and tips visit my blog at