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How should I deal with a tenant who cannot pay rent?

On Behalf of | Mar 1, 2021 | Real Estate Litigation

You have every right to start eviction proceedings when a tenant fails to pay rent, but in some situations, you may want to try something else before you take this step. This is especially true if you have a positive history with the tenant or are aware that he or she has become unexpectedly insolvent.

However, you should react to protect yourself. Mondaq explains that you want to minimize your loss in this situation, which means you should consider your next moves carefully. You do have a few options beyond filing an eviction.

Change lease terms

You can alter the lease to make it easier for the tenant to conclude his or her business and vacate the premises. Commercial leases often have conditions that can make it hard for a tenant to wrap up a business. You can waive certain requirements to allow the tenant to more quickly close the business and move on.

End the lease early

If you fear your tenant will file bankruptcy, then you may consider ending the lease early. You may have to pay to get out of the lease, but that may not be as much as you would lose if you wait things out. Once the tenant files, it will be difficult to get them out of the space so that you can find new tenants.

Grant relief

If the tenant has always been good about paying rent on time and you can afford it, you could simply offer to defer or even forgive late payments. If you do this, you will need to make the exact terms clear to the tenant. Do not allow room for the tenant to later claim that you removed the obligation to ever pay rent again.