Hi, Todd Ortscheid here with GTL Real Estate. This video I want to talk about your various payment options on how you can pay your rent, or any other fees, or anything you might owe. There’s several different options. We try to make it really easy, a lot of different ways for you to pay.
The number one way we recommend, this is what we encourage everybody to do, is to set up an automatic bank draft from your checking account. You have to have a checking account for this obviously, so if you don’t have a checking account it won’t work for you, and we’d recommend you get one. But this option works only for those people who have a checking account, but if you do have one, this is by far the best way to take care of your rent because it is free. There’s no additional fee or anything related to it, you just pay whatever amount you owe, nothing’s tacked on to that, and the way to do that is to set it up to happen automatically. So you want to do what your resident portal called an Automatic ACH, or an Automatic E-Check.
And the way that works is you just put in your checking account number and your routing number, which you can find on the bottom of your check from your checking account. You put that in, you tell it how much to draw, tell it what date. Don’t put an end date on that unless there’s some reason you want that to stop on a certain date. It’s best to leave that blank, and that way it will continue to go out until you vacate the property, so that way you won’t forget it. So you set that up, it will automatically pull that money out of your account every single month on that same day, and then you’ll never have to worry about it again. Of course, you do need to make sure you actually have the money in your bank account, you don’t want to bounce a check because there would be a fee for that. But otherwise there’s no fees associated with that, it all happens automatically so you can’t forget and get a late fee. That’s by far the best way to make your payments.
After that we would say probably the next best way to make payment, and this works really well for people who don’t have a checking account, is to use the RentMoney system. And you’ll find this in your resident portal under one time payments, go the rent money option there, you click on that, you can print off a voucher that has an account number and instructions on it that you can take to a Walmart, and ACE Cash Express, Kmart. There’s a lot of different locations. You can actually search for a location there that takes it. There’s about 25,000 places all across the country that will take these payments from you.
So let’s say you print it off and you want to go to a Walmart, you just go to the customer service counter at Walmart with this voucher that you print off that has the instructions on it, you hand that to them along with your cash, they take your cash, they plug all into their system, and then that money goes directly into our bank account. Now, they do charge a fee for this, it’s about $3.75 for most of you, it’s based on the rent amount, but that’s about what it should be for you. And that way it happens instantaneously basically. Within a couple of minutes of you making that payment at that counter, it shows up in our system on your ledger, it automatically gets applied to whatever you owe, and it’s just taken care of. So, that’s the second best way to make your payment. You have to use cash, you can’t take a check, or money order, or anything like that to the location, you have to take cash. But that’s a really easy way to do that, because there’s pretty much a Walmart everywhere no matter where you’re located, so it makes it really easy.
After that, we still offer other options, but it starts to get a little pricey. So, the other option is you can pay on your resident portal using a credit card, or a one-time E-check. So there’s two different ways you can do this. You can set up an automatic payment from your credit card, it sort of works just like the automatic bank draft, but it’s pulling from a credit card, or a debit card. The problem with this is, the payment processor charges a fee for paying with a card. So if you do that they’re going to charge you $31, so you have to pay that fee along with it. If you need to use a credit card though, it’s a way to do that.
The other option is a one-time payment. You can do the same thing with your credit card, so it doesn’t have to be an automatic thing. You can just do it on that same day, “I just want to make a payment today” for example for $300 let’s say you want to pay a portion of your balance. You can do that but it will charge you a $31 fee if it’s a credit card or debit card, or a $25 fee if it’s pulling from your checking account on the same day. So, again, that’s pretty expensive, so we don’t recommend doing those same day payments, or recurring credit card payments. If you’re going to pay electronically, we recommend you set it up as an automatic payment from your bank account to avoid those fees.
And then the final way to pay, is just making an old fashioned paper payment. You can pay with a money order, or a cashiers check, or a personal check even at our office. You can bring that into the office, or you can mail it. Now, if you do this there’s an extra fee for it. There’s a $10 fee that covers our costs that are involved with accepting these payments. We have to go down to the bank, and there’s a whole lot of hassles and staff workload that’s involved in that. So there is $10 fee for making a payment that way, that’s why we don’t recommend it. But we will take those payments still. A lot of companies have stopped taking them completely, but we still try to do that, but we do have to charge that extra $10 fee.
Now, the important thing to remember here is, if you mail that payment, remember that we aren’t responsible for the post office. So if the post office is late getting that to us, then you’ll be responsible for a late fee. Or, if they lose it in the mail, especially for a money order, it is a lot of work to get them to cancel that money order and give you your money back. We’ve had some tenants do this, it can take two months for them to give you your money back if you have to cancel a lost money order. And then in the meantime, you’re still having to pay your rent, so you’re having to come up with the money again in order to pay your rent while you wait for the post office, or the gas station, whoever issued you that money order to give you your money back. So we really don’t recommend you mail these payments, that can turn into a big mess.
But if you absolutely have to, it will probably be better for you to send it by FedEx, or Next Day priority mail so there’s a tracking number and everything like that on it. But we really recommend if you’re going to make a payment with a paper payment method, you should probably just bring it into the office, because you’re responsible for getting the payment here on time. So if the post office is late, or they lose it, that’s your responsibility. So we don’t really recommend it, but that option is still available to you. Just remember to include that extra $10 paper payment fee to cover the cost of that.
So those are the various options. If you have any questions about any of those payment methods, send us an E-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org, we’ll be happy to answer those questions. Thanks!