What to Do and Not to Do If You Can't Pay Rent on Time

Here are some dos and don'ts of paying rent late--including how to negotiate a partial or delayed rent payment.


Rare is the tenant who’s never had a problem paying rent on time or in full. If you are a conscientious and honest tenant who is temporarily short on funds, most landlords won’t evict you for paying rent a little late one month. To avoid problems, follow this advice.

Try to Negotiate a Partial or Delayed Rent Payment

You’re more likely to be successful (and avoid an eviction lawsuit)  by being up front with your landlord about your situation, and asking for an extension.  A landlord who considers you a good tenant won’t want to lose you, since it’s often difficult and expensive to evict you, then find and move in good tenants. This means you can probably get the landlord to accept a portion of the rent now—maybe even a small portion—and the rest later. Here are some basic steps to take:  

FEATURED LISTINGS FROM NOLO
Swipe to view more
NEED PROFESSIONAL HELP ?

Talk to a Landlord-Tenant attorney.

How It Works

  1. Briefly tell us about your case
  2. Provide your contact information
  3. Choose attorneys to contact you