Rent Arrear Reminder Notice Templates

Rent Arrear Reminder Notice Template

Unfortunately, I’ve dealt with my fair share of rent arrears – and I believe most long-term landlords have. It’s part of the business.

Experience has taught me that there is no “one fits all” approach when dealing with late rent, because the right course of action will largely depend on the dynamics of your relationship with your tenant(s) and the reason for the arrears.

For example, I tend to have healthy and personal one-on-one relationships with all my tenants (because I’m self-managing and hands-on), so in most cases I can comfortably send my tenants a friendly text message to give them a nudge, and go from there. And I generally think that’s the best approach if it’s an option. However, when that isn’t the case, and the relationship is more formal, I think triggering rent reminder notices is a reasonable option. It’s professional, it’s traceable and effective.

However, ultimately, it’s up to each landlord to assess their own situation and determine the best approach. So while I’m going to make the rent reminder notice templates I use available for download (for anyone to use), I do want to make the point that using them isn’t the default reaction.

Table of contents

What are rent arrears reminder notices?

I can’t stress enough, rent arrears reminder notices are NOT eviction notices. We’re no way near that stage and hopefully we never get there.

A rent arrears reminder notice is simply a formal and professional letter, reminding the tenant that they’re behind on rent and therefore should seek to pay the arrears ASAP.

Yes, of course, I’m sure the tenant doesn’t need a reminder – they’re fully aware they’re behind – but a courtesy reminder can be very powerful.

When to serve a rent arrears reminder notice?

So, I can only speak for myself, as I don’t think there are any hard and fast rules here.

I think timing is key and finding a balance is important here – you don’t want to serve the notice too early (as that may seem unreasonable), but at the same time you don’t want to leave it too long (as that will give the tenant the opportunity to fall deeper into arrears).

I usually leave it 10 – 14 days, as I want to get out the door before next month’s rent is due.

Why serve rent arrears reminder notices?

There’s a few reasons for sending rent reminder notices:

  • It’s a professional approach and shows the tenant you’re doing things properly (which in itself can act as a catalysts for them to cover the arrears).
  • God forbid if matters escalate and the rent arrears continue and this ends up going to court, you may need to prove that you served proper notice and did everything within your powers to resolve the issue reasonable.
  • Rent arrears notices can be tracked, either by recorded delivery if posting them, or through emails.

How to serve rent arrears reminder notices

  • Post – recorded delivery
  • Email

Both methods make it easy to show proof of delivery (which is essential).

I recommend writing a “friendly” covering letter/introduction with the rent reminder notices – don’t just go in raw with the notices – informing the tenant that you’re taking this step because it’s protocol, otherwise it might come across as aggressive.

It’s also worth mentioning that you’re willing to work with them to get the matter resolved (presuming that is the case?). It’s not uncommon for tenants to go radio silent when they’ve fallen into arrears – remember, it’s most likely a scary time for them as well – so it’s important to try and encourage communication. Being kept in the dark can be extremely frustrating and scary, so keeping the situation amicable usually yields the most productive outcome.

When to escalate matters onto the next step (i.e. eviction notice)

Damn, shit has hit the fan if you’re interested in this part.

I’m sorry, and I’m with you for it.

This part can be brutal, but the most valuable piece of advice I can offer you is to ensure you remain composed at all times; act rationally and remain within the confinements of the law. I see it all too often, where landlords let their emotions take over them (which I totally get, because it’s our livelihoods on the line here) and end up doing more harm than good.

If the rent reminder notices don’t work and your tenant is still in arrears and possibly incurred further arrears – and you don’t see the situation resolving itself – then in reality, the next step is most likely going to entail serving a Section 8 eviction notice (this can only be served after your tenant has racked up 2 months of arrears). This approach is definitely jumping from a feather to a hammer, so proceed with caution. If you feel out of your depth, you might want to consider using a professional rent arrears and eviction service (I often think this is the best approach, especially for novice landlords).

But again, I must reiterate, it will depend on your circumstances, because your tenant may have a plausible reason(s) for the arrears and offer solid reasons to give them further time.

I’ve written an in-depth blog post on managing rent arrears, so I recommend reading that first to help determine your next steps.

I’m still here for you, but best of luck!

Landlord out xo

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13 Join the Conversation...

Guest Avatar
Simon 21st September, 2008 @ 00:00

Oh yes.. The dreaded late payers! The last guy I had in my house was a nightmare! Every month I had to chase him.

So.. With when the next one moved in it was standing orders all the way! 1st of the Month now I get my money. I told the person this was part of the deal and said I wouldn't let to them without a standing order setup.

Touch wood she's been in there 5 months now and I haven't had a payment late by 1 day.

Maybe say to your person.. "I'm putting this in place as you always seem to forget. This will take that stress off your hands."

I hate chasing people as well and it's a great feeling knowing the money will just show up.

Also.. I find it's a great test when you're showing people. I just tell them upfront that it HAS to be a standing order.. If they make any kind of moans I show them the door.

All the best!

The Landlord Avatar
The Landlord 21st September, 2008 @ 01:20

Hey Simon,

I think we're on the same wavelength!

I have new tenants moving in next week, and I've made it clear that they need to setup a standing order- even put it in the contract :)

Standing orders are the future!

Guest Avatar
Simon 21st September, 2008 @ 09:47

They sure are!! And like you say get it in the contact as well.
If they then cancel the standing order you can boot them out easier!

It's just a huge thing every month you don't have to worry about.

All the best!

Guest Avatar
Carlie Mayes 10th August, 2009 @ 09:22

we had some dreadful latepayers AND they left the house in an aweful state with over £3k of damage - I will be taking your advice and getting a standing order drawn up - never deal and cash again.
thanks for other advice - have put standing order info into contract.

Guest Avatar
Property Genius 7th February, 2010 @ 16:40

I manage over 900 properties which constitutes a large amount of rent each day coming in. It would be fair to say I have had my fair share of arrears to deal with! While we require our tenants to fill out a standing order form at the time of signing the agreement, I have to say it isn't the saving grace the other comments have suggested.

The main issues I have are standing orders can be cancelled by the tenant at anytime and if there are insufficient funds in their account the rent will not be paid. The better way would be a direct debit which gives the landlord/management company control over the transaction but unfortunately is only available to larger companies (and at a large cost!).

Finally even if the tenant no longer pays by standing order and it is stipulated in the agreement, you would be hard pushed to have the tenants evicted, if at all, on those grounds (not to mention the time it would take to even get to court).

However, out of the other options, standing order is the best way, but still doesn't help with arrears. There must be a better way! Loving the image of Samuel L Jackson. "Oh I'm sorry did I break your concentration?!"

Guest Avatar
myjamfactory 4th June, 2010 @ 11:06

Below is the precise wording of advice given to prospective DSS applicants.


We do consider DSS applicants but a willing and able guarantor must be offered.
The guarantor must be a UK homeowner, be in full time work and be fully aware of the commitment to pay the rent it the money fails to arrive from the local authority for any reason.
The deposit is usually 25 - 30% greater than one months rent of the property applied for.

Hope this assists.`

If a worthy guarantor can be offered, do business with them.
Young people are being laid off, the economy is shrinking, let HMG pay, they got us into this mess.

Guest Avatar
nita 12th October, 2010 @ 18:49

Who on earth cares about a week's rent being late? Too many chav landlords in the UK - you've ruined the mortgage system and the rented property sector, ruined neighbourhoods, and spend it all on take aways - I do hope you get some form of cancer soon :) Your blog is ridiculous, you hyperinflated shit.

The Landlord Avatar
The Landlord 12th October, 2010 @ 21:11

Ridiculous, yet managed to capture your attention. Lovely.

Guest Avatar
Soodesh Chocken 21st January, 2013 @ 10:43

My tenant has been late every month so far with her rent (and she has only been in there 4 months, and on first meeting her, before signing the contract I stressed the importance of paying on time and through standing order, as per the contract).

I got some lame excuse on the second month of the property being occupied (and the second month of chasing her) that she is having issues with setting up a standing order with her bank!

Last month I got the excuse that she had to go to Romania for the weekend due to family issues. She paid a week late that month.

As of today, she is 9 days late and refuses to pick her phone or reply to messages acknowledging that rent is overdue (which I have highlighted in my previous messages!

Guest Avatar
leo 2nd June, 2014 @ 20:08

I asked my tenant to pay the rent by standing order, even wrote that on the contract, but she ignored me, it is 2 months already, anyone can suggest what can I do?

Guest Avatar
john 5th September, 2015 @ 20:59

I got me a night mare tenant. I have given her numerous chances and options to pay of her arrears only to get one bull story after another . I get a payment now and again.
I haven't received a dot for four weeks only to find out she on holiday aboard with her family. hope she,s having a nice time.....grrrrr.

Guest Avatar
Sam 8th April, 2018 @ 14:34

Hi my tenants have for the last 4 months paid late and in small instalments, can I serve notice for them to leave?

Guest Avatar
paul 10th November, 2020 @ 17:57

I am 57 and left home and rented my first property when 16. I have never missed my rent in my life. My dear grandmother always said 'never miss your rent, or you will lose the roof over your head' I think that a tenancy is a load of bollocks, and is not worth wiping your ass on! I have been served a section 21 notice more than once, even halfway through my tenancy. Through no fault of my own, apart from the landlord wanting to sell up and fuck off. I have never been allowed to have a dog, but the landlord still likes his rent every month. Even though I had a professional dog walker to pay, to take the dog out. I even lost the contents of my furniture as I could not afford storage, and gave everything away to the salvation army. I then started out again, and low and behold I was served another 21 notice, as the landlord passed away and the property sold. Why can't there be a law that protects us when we pay the rent on the dot, are quiet and conscientious tenants and keep our home immaculate? Just been served a notice to quit as landlord said rent behind by two months? No text/email/reminder letter. The landlord found his missing payments all happy and well, notice retracted! Not good enough! BTW any decent landlords who want a star tenant in the Bournemouth area who will let me have a dog? :-)

















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