Can a landlord change the due date of rent if it differs from that in the lease?

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Can a landlord change the due date of rent if it differs from that in the lease?

My lease states that rent is due by the 3rd of each month. I received a letter in the mail from my landlord stating that they are changing it to the first of each month or late charges will be incurred.

Asked on May 14, 2011 under Real Estate Law, Louisiana

Answers:

M.D., Member, California and New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

A lease is a contract and the parties are bound by its terms. Therefore on first blush it would appear that the due date for your rental payment cannot be changed. However, as with any contract, there is the possibility that language exists that allows for this (i.e. your landlord retains the right to change the due date). Right now, you need to read your lease carefully for any such provision.  If it's not there then the lease terms cannot be arbitrarily changed to suit your landlord.

Additionally, state law may well give a tenant a grace period in which to pay before incurring late fees.  At this point you should consult with an attorney that specializes in landlord tenant matters, Legal Aid, or a tenants rights organization in your area.


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