Landlord survey/study
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Posted by Don Birkholz (+1327) 7 years ago
I have wanted to do this survey for a long time: Landlords, have you been stuck over the years for nonpayment of rent, and what were the reasons your renter has been unable to pay the rent? Don't want any names, only the reasons. I imagine loss of job and maybe divorce would be in there somewhere, but I would hope to get a listing of all reasons and be able to rank them. Nonpayment of rent is a big problem. tks
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Posted by heimer (+98) 7 years ago
Usually, when people have financial difficulties, the first bill that goes unpaid is the doctor/hospital bill; the second is the rent; and third is the utility bill. Two of these directly affect the landlord.

There is one reason for nonpayment of rent: No money has been set aside for rent.

There are three causes: 1) The tenant would have had the rent money, but mismanaged it, spending it in other places.
2) The tenant erroniously thinks that another party is respondible for the rent: roommate(s), significant other, the estranged spouse, the grown children, a charity, a goverment agency. When that money does not materialize, the tenant does not feel obligated, leaving the landlord to negotiate with a party who is probably not financially responsible.
3)The tenant cannot pay the rent due to unforseen circumstances which have pushed him/her into financial crisis despite consciencious budgeting and planning.

Think about these factors when you create your survey
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Posted by Bridgier (+9224) 7 years ago
I give even odds that we discover the answer is either 'DUI Classes' or 'mandatory auto insurance'
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Posted by Gunnar Emilsson (+17485) 7 years ago
My tenant was very honest. He told me, "I lost the rent money in the keno machine at Lucky Lil's. I think someone came in earlier and played all my numbers."
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Posted by heimer (+98) 7 years ago
Gunnar
That's the same guy whose IRA is managed by PowerBall
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Posted by Don Birkholz (+1327) 7 years ago
Every January Billings goes around and rounds up people with late fines. I would think that anyone who has to immediately pay a 300$ late fine would probably go delinquent on their rent. (Why not give them community service). I don't know if DUI costs or mandatory auto insurance costs would be enough to force an indigent to go delinquent on their rent. DUI costs and mandatory auto insurance costs (in several surveys) are causing an increase in food stamp numbers. A 1996 food stamp survey done in Billings Montana showed 18 of the 96 applicants said they wanted food stamps due to fines, DUI costs, or mandatory auto insurance. That equals 70,000 over the last 30 years. A study done by Dr Maril for the insurance people showed 40 per cent said they could not buy food or pay rent due to mandatory auto insurance, so maybe I am wrong and auto insurance might be causing an increase in no money for rent.

I see Utah is now towing vehicles for no insurance (those vehicles which are towed by mistake, that do have insurance, will be reimbursed). There are low income households making 6,000$ a year that have an 8,000$ auto insurance bill (three teens). I think the proponents should draft a bill requiring tazing and waterboarding of uninsured drivers, to try and get that household with a 6,000$ income to buy 8,000$ of insurance. I think they would have more luck tazing and waterboarding a turnip to get blood, or taz and waterboard a pig to get pigs to fly. I guess if you taze a pig, he will "fly around", but I don't think that counts.
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Posted by atomicg (+1012) 7 years ago
Just remember that landlords reporting what their tenants tell them and the actual reasons people are late are two separate groups of responses. If you want real answers ask real people why they were late, not landlords who are giving out already skewed data.

As a kid I fed a landlord or two some total crap. As an adult and a landlord I've heard the crap and it was all too familiar. The most my tenants cost me wasn't rent though. It was damage after they were gone beyond the amount of the deposit.

Trashed wood floors, holes in the walls, busted doors and a window. Oh and they dismantled a rain gutter to create an extra spot in the driveway near the house and over a year the perfectly aligned drip eroded a solid inch off the corner of the foundation. I've heard stories of $20k in damage that a landlord just had to absorb because suing a broke person doesn't really get you any money back. And although it might make the plaintiff feel better to win the suit the loss/judgement and bad credit isn't going to help the defendant get their life on track any sooner.

There are good and bad tenants and good and bad landlords. Checking references, checking on the property and good communication are key. I could go on and on but one thing being a landlord does is makes a guy really busy so that's my input for now.

[Edited by atomicg (1/7/2015 2:40:39 PM)]
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Posted by David Schott (+17178) 7 years ago
How about tenants who steal the batteries out of the smoke detectors?
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Posted by Richard Bonine, Jr. (+14970) 7 years ago
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+1