How is my rent 4 days late if the due date is the first and i paid it on the 4th?

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How is my rent 4 days late if the due date is the first and i paid it on the 4th?

In TX, if you don’t pay rent when it is due, the landlord may begin charging you a late fee; the late fee provision must be included in a written lease and cannot be imposed until the rent remains unpaid 1 full day after the date rent is due. The fee is valid only if it is a reasonable estimate of uncertain damages to the landlord that are incapable of precise calculation. The landlord may charge an initial fee and a daily fee for each day the rent is late.

Asked on May 4, 2018 under Real Estate Law, Texas

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 2 years ago | Contributor

The way you say this landlord's office does thing is inconsistent with landlord-tenant practice: the day rent is due is not a day that it is late--the *next* day is the first day it is late. So if you paid on the 4th, you were three days (2nd, 3rd, 4th) late, not four. That said, speaking as a NJ landlord-tenant attorney, I can tell you that once a landlord-tenant relationship turns toxic or contentious, it generally doesn't end well for the tenant: if you make the landlord feel you are cheating them, they will look for, and often find, ways to eventually get you out (e.g. if you fall behind on rent, they may refuse to work you with you but instead evict). While you of course want to stand on important rights, for one day's late payment, you may be best off paying it, even if they are incorrect, to avoid turning the relationship contentious over what is likely to be a small amount of money.


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