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Tenants Under Paid Rent


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Hi there,

I wonder if you could advise on this issue I have, I'll explain.

I have rented out my flat for 3 years and 5 months to the same tenants and on the whole everything has been fine. I was able to pull away from the letting agency in June at the beginning of the 3rd year of their tenancy.

The tenants have always paid well except a couple of times when they may have put the rent into my account 3 days late. I have always addressed any issue by letter and I am happy with them.

I have a separate account for this rental property. They put cash directly into my account every month and I usually check to see everything is in order monthly. I missed two months and had a niggling feeling that I should check, so I did. When I checked I noticed that instead of putting £900 in 30 Sept. and 30th Oct. they only put £800. So they have under paid by £200.

I sent them a letter immediately and the lady called me and seemed to be very embarrassed proclaiming not to know anything about it. She said she would speak to her husband when he got in and would call the following morning.

The following morning the husband called and didn't really have an excuse, my gut feeling is that he spent it because she gave him the full amount (£900) to take to the bank. I said that they must pay £1100 this month but he said they can't afford it but will pay £1100 in December and put £900 in this month.

They have been very good up to now and I think they are both very embarrassed by this but I cannot allow this to happen again.

What do you think I should do? Any advice? Should I send a letter and request them to sign in agreement to pay next month?

Thanks for your help in advance.


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Hi Paul,

Seems from what you say that the trouble may be between themselves.

Sending the letter would re-enforce the fact that you are not going to stand for any nonesense so I would do it. Be in control.

Often when this sort of thing happens it is the start of problems - let's hope not but can't you get them to pay by direct debit? That way it gives more of a duty to have enough in the bank and may prevent shortfalls and temptation to spend the rent. If this does not settle it then get rid - sometimes tenants get a bit stroppy after a long tenancy and try it on.


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