Author Topic: Best way to collect rent electronically  (Read 24270 times)

Drew0311

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Best way to collect rent electronically
« on: March 04, 2016, 09:34:55 PM »
All,

I'm looking for the best way to collect rent payments online. I was using SparkRent by intuit, but they have discontinued it which saddened me because it was pretty slick. I have looked at venmo, square, and google wallet, but I'm not finding the same features that sparkrent offered, e.g, automated reminders, and late fees. Has anyone been using anything that provides these features and a low cost? I believe sparkrent charged $1 per payment.

Drew

Ricky

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Re: Best way to collect rent electronically
« Reply #1 on: March 04, 2016, 09:43:19 PM »
Cozy.co - never personally used but it sounds like it would fit your needs.

Pancake

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Re: Best way to collect rent electronically
« Reply #2 on: March 05, 2016, 02:11:45 AM »
Cozy.co

It worked well for me when I used it and they keep adding more features. Best part is it's free.

antifragilista320

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Re: Best way to collect rent electronically
« Reply #3 on: March 05, 2016, 04:44:12 PM »
+1 for Cozy, I use it for my building.  The rents take a few extra days to deposit but you always get your money!

jhess002

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Re: Best way to collect rent electronically
« Reply #4 on: March 07, 2016, 08:19:33 AM »
Venmo - it is an app that makes transfers really easy (from tenants, then to your bank).

MaikoTsumi

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Re: Best way to collect rent electronically
« Reply #5 on: March 07, 2016, 08:46:20 AM »
Dwolla is also free.

supomglol

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Re: Best way to collect rent electronically
« Reply #6 on: March 07, 2016, 12:36:21 PM »
We use Cozy.co
They do take a long time for the deposits to hit your account; but they are totally free.

lazyp

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Re: Best way to collect rent electronically
« Reply #7 on: March 11, 2016, 08:01:42 AM »
I ask for 12 post dated checks, i take a picture of the check via wells fargo mobile deposit on the 1st of every month. Money posts quickly, no fees.  Does this count as electronic?

elysianfields

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Re: Best way to collect rent electronically
« Reply #8 on: March 11, 2016, 04:33:38 PM »
I ask for 12 post dated checks, i take a picture of the check via wells fargo mobile deposit on the 1st of every month. Money posts quickly, no fees.  Does this count as electronic?

Sorry, no.  You killed a bunch of trees and magnetic ink to have them write those checks. 

BTW, the 20th century called, they want their checks back.

Living in Europe, where we can transfer money between accounts on a one-off, scheduled, or regular basis, I find this whole attachment to paper checks simply wasteful in time and resources.  In fact, my bank didn't even bother to print checks for us.

I suppose the problem is that US banks don't want to offer a service for which they cannot charge a fee.  Maybe they make money printing checks, though processing them must cost more (even if they photograph the checks).  I don't see how banks can make a profit that way; perhaps they do in their monthly fees.

In any case, this has created the opening for Paypal and others, but as a landlord, I refuse to pay a processing fee.  Instead, my tenants walk to the branch of our bank nearest them and deposit the check on the first workday of each month - wasting their time and money, not mine.

randymarsh

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Re: Best way to collect rent electronically
« Reply #9 on: March 13, 2016, 12:53:47 AM »
I ask for 12 post dated checks, i take a picture of the check via wells fargo mobile deposit on the 1st of every month. Money posts quickly, no fees.  Does this count as electronic?

Do you require this? I just because as a tenant I don't think I'd do this. I don't have a concrete reason other than it seems odd. Actually, it may similar to the same reason I'd never pay upfront for a 6 or 12 month lease term unless I already knew the landlord.

Johnny Aloha

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Re: Best way to collect rent electronically
« Reply #10 on: March 13, 2016, 01:08:16 AM »
I use intuit payment network.  It costs $0.50 per transaction and can be easily incorporated into quickbooks (since they are both intuit products).  I love it because it's easy to set up recurring payments.

protossZerg

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Re: Best way to collect rent electronically
« Reply #11 on: March 13, 2016, 03:41:40 PM »
Dwolla is also free.

I have been using Dwolla for a little over 2 years with no issues.

Doubleh

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Re: Best way to collect rent electronically
« Reply #12 on: March 13, 2016, 03:53:52 PM »
Not sure I understand the question? Our Tennant deposits the cash in our bank account each month and there it is - how is that so hard?

Sure we gave them our bank account and routing number but you guys do realise that every time you hand someone a check they're printed on there, right? Don't see a concern here. Over here in Europe people have got used to handing out our bank details for people to send us transfers, and it turns out that it doesn't let them steal all you money.  For what it's worth though our rental is in USA and our Tennant pays by electronic transfer from their us bank account to our us bank account. Works great.

randymarsh

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Re: Best way to collect rent electronically
« Reply #13 on: March 13, 2016, 07:38:47 PM »
Not sure I understand the question? Our Tennant deposits the cash in our bank account each month and there it is - how is that so hard?

Sure we gave them our bank account and routing number but you guys do realise that every time you hand someone a check they're printed on there, right? Don't see a concern here. Over here in Europe people have got used to handing out our bank details for people to send us transfers, and it turns out that it doesn't let them steal all you money.  For what it's worth though our rental is in USA and our Tennant pays by electronic transfer from their us bank account to our us bank account. Works great.

A lot of US banks don't have a way for customers to send money via ACH. ING Direct (now Capital One) had this feature. But my current bank does not. They will however print and mail a check to a third party no problem! But I can't just put in the recipient's account number and click send.

NinetyFour

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Re: Best way to collect rent electronically
« Reply #14 on: March 13, 2016, 07:58:21 PM »
Posting to follow.

sunshine

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Re: Best way to collect rent electronically
« Reply #15 on: March 13, 2016, 08:46:46 PM »
Not sure I understand the question? Our Tennant deposits the cash in our bank account each month and there it is - how is that so hard?

Sure we gave them our bank account and routing number but we do you guys do realise that every time you hand someone a check they're printed on there, right? Don't see a concern here. Over here in Europe people have got used to handing out our bank details for people to send us transfers, and it turns out that it doesn't let them steal all you money.  For what it's worth though our rental is in USA and our Tennant pays by electronic transfer from their us bank account to our us bank account. Works great.

This is what we do also. Very easy!

Ynari

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Re: Best way to collect rent electronically
« Reply #16 on: March 13, 2016, 09:23:37 PM »
Not sure I understand the question? Our Tennant deposits the cash in our bank account each month and there it is - how is that so hard?

Sure we gave them our bank account and routing number but you guys do realise that every time you hand someone a check they're printed on there, right? Don't see a concern here. Over here in Europe people have got used to handing out our bank details for people to send us transfers, and it turns out that it doesn't let them steal all you money.  For what it's worth though our rental is in USA and our Tennant pays by electronic transfer from their us bank account to our us bank account. Works great.

A lot of US banks don't have a way for customers to send money via ACH. ING Direct (now Capital One) had this feature. But my current bank does not. They will however print and mail a check to a third party no problem! But I can't just put in the recipient's account number and click send.

That's how my bank does it! Supposedly, I can link up bank accounts and transfer, but it's very picky about which banks it will allow. (It doesn't allow my other bank.) We pay our landlord with the print-and-mail a check feature.

Strangely enough, though, they have rolled out a Venmo/Squarecash-esque "pay anybody" feature, with a $1000 daily limit. How is "send money to a random cell phone number" safer/easier than ACH??

TheOldestYoungMan

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Re: Best way to collect rent electronically
« Reply #17 on: March 17, 2016, 03:39:20 PM »
I ask for 12 post dated checks, i take a picture of the check via wells fargo mobile deposit on the 1st of every month. Money posts quickly, no fees.  Does this count as electronic?

Do you require this? I just because as a tenant I don't think I'd do this. I don't have a concrete reason other than it seems odd. Actually, it may similar to the same reason I'd never pay upfront for a 6 or 12 month lease term unless I already knew the landlord.

You might be hesitant to offer a postdated check because there's no such thing.  The date on a check can make it too old (they expire) but it can be as far out in the future as you want, and the bank will process it.

So no, I wouldn't ever give anyone a postdated check thinking that it wouldn't hit my account until the first of the month, they could go drain the account immediately.

I use Chase quickpay for rent receipts, but it does require me to click on the payment within a certain period of time.  I think I also had to have an account with Chase for it to work.

MsPeacock

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Re: Best way to collect rent electronically
« Reply #18 on: March 17, 2016, 04:52:31 PM »
I just signed up for cozy.co and plan to try it w/ the tenant that I have upcoming. Quite easy to set-up and sends her email reminders.

clarkfan1979

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Re: Best way to collect rent electronically
« Reply #19 on: March 18, 2016, 02:02:38 AM »
I ask for 12 post dated checks, i take a picture of the check via wells fargo mobile deposit on the 1st of every month. Money posts quickly, no fees.  Does this count as electronic?

Do you require this? I just because as a tenant I don't think I'd do this. I don't have a concrete reason other than it seems odd. Actually, it may similar to the same reason I'd never pay upfront for a 6 or 12 month lease term unless I already knew the landlord.

You might be hesitant to offer a postdated check because there's no such thing.  The date on a check can make it too old (they expire) but it can be as far out in the future as you want, and the bank will process it.

So no, I wouldn't ever give anyone a postdated check thinking that it wouldn't hit my account until the first of the month, they could go drain the account immediately.

I use Chase quickpay for rent receipts, but it does require me to click on the payment within a certain period of time.  I think I also had to have an account with Chase for it to work.

Tenants for one of my rentals pays with chase quick-pay. I do not have a banking account with chase. I created an electronic account with Chase to be able to accept the money, but that's it.

adamcollin

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Re: Best way to collect rent electronically
« Reply #20 on: March 18, 2016, 03:32:37 AM »
I use intuit payment network.  It costs $0.50 per transaction and can be easily incorporated into quickbooks (since they are both intuit products).  I love it because it's easy to set up recurring payments.

What other features does it offer?

rubyunrailed

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Re: Best way to collect rent electronically
« Reply #21 on: March 28, 2016, 09:51:15 AM »
I've been using cozy.co for a couple years now, and couldn't be happier! They used to charge $10/mo/property (and no other fees) but they switched to no monthly fee for just collecting rent. Now they only charge for other services like background checks and such. I haven't actually paid them anything since they switched, and I feel a little bad about it. I just have a stable tenant situation in one property, and the other property is entirely managed by a property manager.

arebelspy

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Re: Best way to collect rent electronically
« Reply #22 on: April 03, 2016, 04:14:15 PM »
Not sure I understand the question? Our Tennant deposits the cash in our bank account each month and there it is - how is that so hard?

Sure we gave them our bank account and routing number but we do you guys do realise that every time you hand someone a check they're printed on there, right? Don't see a concern here. Over here in Europe people have got used to handing out our bank details for people to send us transfers, and it turns out that it doesn't let them steal all you money.  For what it's worth though our rental is in USA and our Tennant pays by electronic transfer from their us bank account to our us bank account. Works great.

This is what we do also. Very easy!

Thirded.
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catccc

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Re: Best way to collect rent electronically
« Reply #23 on: April 27, 2016, 09:51:28 AM »
On giving your tenant the routing and account info.  How do they actually put the money in?  Is it like a linked account on the tenant's bank account?  If so, what is preventing them from transferring money out of your account and into theirs?  (If it's just an honor type system, I get it.  I used to have a landlord that let me do the same.  But I always thought it was awfully trusting of them...)

Does anyone ask the tenant for their routing and account info, and then pull rent out every month?  I assume there'd be some sort of signed agreement to allow this between the tenant and the landlord...

arebelspy

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Re: Best way to collect rent electronically
« Reply #24 on: April 28, 2016, 03:55:41 AM »
On giving your tenant the routing and account info.  How do they actually put the money in?  Is it like a linked account on the tenant's bank account?  If so, what is preventing them from transferring money out of your account and into theirs?  (If it's just an honor type system, I get it.  I used to have a landlord that let me do the same.  But I always thought it was awfully trusting of them...)

Does anyone ask the tenant for their routing and account info, and then pull rent out every month?  I assume there'd be some sort of signed agreement to allow this between the tenant and the landlord...

They can't transfer money out.

The routing number and account number is on the bottom of every check.  If that was all it took to get money from a bank account, it'd be a very insecure system.  :)

The tenants can either transfer money in, electronically, or go to a bank branch with that info and deposit it.
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Re: Best way to collect rent electronically
« Reply #25 on: April 28, 2016, 05:02:55 AM »
This article (sponsored by Cozy) argues against giving your bank account info to your tenants:
https://www.landlordology.com/dont-give-out-your-bank-account-number/
The point seems to be that by depositing small amounts, bad tenants can delay eviction.  Does this argument seem valid to you?

By the way, I'm a new landlord, and just started using Cozy for rental payments (as well as online applications and credit checks).  So far, so good. 


arebelspy

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Re: Best way to collect rent electronically
« Reply #26 on: April 28, 2016, 06:45:46 AM »
I'm familiar with the argument, but it doesn't worry me.  They've gotta trick the judge, too, and most judges aren't happy about tricks like that.
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MsPeacock

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Re: Best way to collect rent electronically
« Reply #27 on: April 29, 2016, 06:11:06 AM »
Say I am the one making a payment. If I have the routing number and account number, what is the mechanism for me setting up the transfer? I can't recall seeing anything with my bank to do this on my own, but maybe I don't know where to look...

arebelspy

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Re: Best way to collect rent electronically
« Reply #28 on: April 29, 2016, 09:39:50 AM »
Say I am the one making a payment. If I have the routing number and account number, what is the mechanism for me setting up the transfer? I can't recall seeing anything with my bank to do this on my own, but maybe I don't know where to look...

It will depend on your bank. Contact your bank to set it up.
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Re: Best way to collect rent electronically
« Reply #29 on: April 29, 2016, 12:06:06 PM »
I also use chase quickpay.  Its free and secure.  Love it!  My primary accounts are with chase though so it just worked out that way for me.

rubyunrailed

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Re: Best way to collect rent electronically
« Reply #30 on: April 29, 2016, 08:30:45 PM »
The routing number and account number is on the bottom of every check.  If that was all it took to get money from a bank account, it'd be a very insecure system.  :)

Technically that is all you need to get money out of a bank account. At least until you get caught. Once you have someone's routing and account number, you can just go print it on check paper and cash a check drawn from their account. There's nothing technical in place to stop that. Of course as soon as you do, and the person sees the unrecognized check, they'll call their bank and track it down and then you'll most likely end up in jail for fraud. But the whole check system is not what I would call secure, certainly not secure in a way that prevents that kind of fraud in the first place.

I have both given my tenants my bank account info, as well as printed checks for my roommates that I then deposited to collect rent from them. I hadn't thought about the trick to avoid eviction before, and I don't plan on letting my tenants deposit automatically in the future. But I have done it before!
« Last Edit: April 29, 2016, 08:33:58 PM by rubyunrailed »

jan62

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Re: Best way to collect rent electronically
« Reply #31 on: April 29, 2016, 11:12:11 PM »
My tenants just pay straight into my bank account. I'm amazed people still use cheques - internet banking makes it all a lot faster, cuts out the middle man.

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Re: Best way to collect rent electronically
« Reply #32 on: April 30, 2016, 09:52:55 AM »
Does Cozy.co allow you to set up multiple different accounts for multiple properties?

Currently demoing a friend's PM software so using that (payments process through Stripe), but he still has some kinks to work through so I may double dip...

bop

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Re: Best way to collect rent electronically
« Reply #33 on: April 30, 2016, 04:30:53 PM »
You can have multiple properties on your Cozy.co account.  When you say "multiple different accounts", do you mean different bank accounts?  I believe that is possible.  For each property, you can assign it to a different bank account if you wish.       

thedayisbrave

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Re: Best way to collect rent electronically
« Reply #34 on: April 30, 2016, 07:19:50 PM »
You can have multiple properties on your Cozy.co account.  When you say "multiple different accounts", do you mean different bank accounts?  I believe that is possible.  For each property, you can assign it to a different bank account if you wish.       

Yes.. that's perfect, thank you!

HipGnosis

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Re: Best way to collect rent electronically
« Reply #35 on: May 02, 2016, 01:15:38 PM »
My tenants just pay straight into my bank account. I'm amazed people still use cheques - internet banking makes it all a lot faster, cuts out the middle man.
But HOW do they "just pay"??

arebelspy

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Re: Best way to collect rent electronically
« Reply #36 on: May 02, 2016, 01:21:27 PM »
My tenants just pay straight into my bank account. I'm amazed people still use cheques - internet banking makes it all a lot faster, cuts out the middle man.
But HOW do they "just pay"??

Jan is outside the US.  Europe, Australia, etc. do much more digital banking than the US does.  It's much more common to do bank to bank transfers online.
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Re: Best way to collect rent electronically
« Reply #37 on: May 02, 2016, 11:36:48 PM »
My tenants use RadPad.  RadPad just started allowing free electronic payments this month.  Prior to the electronic payments they mailed out checks (and I deposited them via my bank's mobile app).  Tenants can pay by ACH or debit card for free.  There's a fee for credit card payments.  Haven't had any problems. 

Cyaphas

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Re: Best way to collect rent electronically
« Reply #38 on: May 03, 2016, 01:39:17 AM »
Following...

burrowsrw

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Re: Best way to collect rent electronically
« Reply #39 on: May 03, 2016, 01:43:33 AM »
Wow this thread makes the States look antique! Do you guys actually not have the ability to transfer money from one account to another? I've seen cheques but never used one in real life, I haven't used a deposit slip since around 2003. Apart from applying for bank loans and credit, I haven't gone into a bank in the last 8 or so years.

As for how to pay, you click on 'setup an automatic payment', type in their account number and the amount to pay, done and dusted!

arebelspy

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Re: Best way to collect rent electronically
« Reply #40 on: May 03, 2016, 02:03:20 AM »
Wow this thread makes the States look antique!

This is accurate.

Our banking regs are ridiculous, cause, you know, war on drugs.
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Re: Best way to collect rent electronically
« Reply #41 on: May 03, 2016, 02:08:34 AM »
Wow this thread makes the States look antique! Do you guys actually not have the ability to transfer money from one account to another? I've seen cheques but never used one in real life, I haven't used a deposit slip since around 2003. Apart from applying for bank loans and credit, I haven't gone into a bank in the last 8 or so years.

As for how to pay, you click on 'setup an automatic payment', type in their account number and the amount to pay, done and dusted!

C'mon, it's not quite that easy and you know it. You also have to choose the payment frequency and the date you want the transfers to start, if you're too lazy to do it every time. ;)

tralfamadorian

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Re: Best way to collect rent electronically
« Reply #42 on: May 06, 2016, 07:11:15 AM »
Another member of the cozy.co bandwagon here.

PoutineLover

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Re: Best way to collect rent electronically
« Reply #43 on: January 09, 2019, 09:40:36 AM »
I used to always pay using email money transfers, all you need is the landlord's email address and they can deposit the funds in any account they want immediately. Does that not exist in the states? Now I'm renting from an elderly couple, so I'm back to cheques or cash. More of a hassle for me, but they don't even own a computer.
Edit: where I live requiring post dated cheques is illegal, but I have done it in the past just for convenience. Not the best though, because once the landlord claimed I hadn't given him a cheque. It was sorted out, but annoying at the time.
« Last Edit: January 09, 2019, 09:43:31 AM by PoutineLover »

rentalnewbie

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Re: Best way to collect rent electronically
« Reply #44 on: January 12, 2019, 06:14:39 PM »
I ask for 12 post dated checks, i take a picture of the check via wells fargo mobile deposit on the 1st of every month. Money posts quickly, no fees.  Does this count as electronic?

Sorry, no.  You killed a bunch of trees and magnetic ink to have them write those checks. 

BTW, the 20th century called, they want their checks back.

Living in Europe, where we can transfer money between accounts on a one-off, scheduled, or regular basis, I find this whole attachment to paper checks simply wasteful in time and resources.  In fact, my bank didn't even bother to print checks for us.

I suppose the problem is that US banks don't want to offer a service for which they cannot charge a fee.  Maybe they make money printing checks, though processing them must cost more (even if they photograph the checks).  I don't see how banks can make a profit that way; perhaps they do in their monthly fees.

In any case, this has created the opening for Paypal and others, but as a landlord, I refuse to pay a processing fee.  Instead, my tenants walk to the branch of our bank nearest them and deposit the check on the first workday of each month - wasting their time and money, not mine.

They make money selling checks or offer free checks as an account perk, for fancy accounts. However, most checking accounts in the u.s. are free to have so I guess they to make it somewhere else.

I use cozy.co as many others have said. I also use their background and credit checks. No complaints.

Peachtea

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Re: Best way to collect rent electronically
« Reply #45 on: January 12, 2019, 06:25:30 PM »
I pay rent using google pay. Benefit of google pay is that transactions hit the accounts very quickly with no 3 day delay. No auto reminders or late fee features, but I guess you could always “request” the rent a couple days before hand as a reminder,

Before google pay, my landlord was willing to their give bank account info to do ACH. It’s no different than a check, all the info is on there anyways. I wouldn’t have been able pull money out (online transfer out) because banks have that little deposit test before you can transfer back and forth between accounts. But I find google pay easier.

Goosey

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Re: Best way to collect rent electronically
« Reply #46 on: January 15, 2019, 06:02:19 AM »
I've been using Cozy for the past year or so for rent collection and billing utilities back to my tenants...has worked well so far.

M5

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Re: Best way to collect rent electronically
« Reply #47 on: January 24, 2019, 03:03:24 PM »
For those using Cozy.co, have you had any complaints about the 2.75% convenience fee charged for using a debit card instead of a checking account? Our tenant uses a small town bank and I'm not sure if they're technology allows for him to pay with a checking account. If that's the case, 2.75% seems a little steep and I'd be afraid of going that route. We currently use OnSite Property Manager to handle our property and it has EVERY feature you can think of but if you want to set up online payment they charge the landlord a 2.9% convenience fee. Although they do allow you to pass as much of that on to the tenant as you'd like.

Proud Foot

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Re: Best way to collect rent electronically
« Reply #48 on: February 05, 2019, 08:54:33 AM »
On giving your tenant the routing and account info.  How do they actually put the money in?  Is it like a linked account on the tenant's bank account?  If so, what is preventing them from transferring money out of your account and into theirs?  (If it's just an honor type system, I get it.  I used to have a landlord that let me do the same.  But I always thought it was awfully trusting of them...)

Does anyone ask the tenant for their routing and account info, and then pull rent out every month?  I assume there'd be some sort of signed agreement to allow this between the tenant and the landlord...

If you are really concerned about giving out your account and a tenant pulling money out all you need is two separate accounts. One set up as deposit only and then one for everything else. Only give out the deposit only account and then transfer deposits to your main account. Not sure about personal accounts but if they are business accounts the deposit only account can be set to automatically sweep to the other account. Of course there is typically a monthly fee for this set up. Probably not worth the fee if you have a handful of rentals.

lexde

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Re: Best way to collect rent electronically
« Reply #49 on: February 10, 2019, 01:41:18 PM »
For those using Cozy.co, have you had any complaints about the 2.75% convenience fee charged for using a debit card instead of a checking account? Our tenant uses a small town bank and I'm not sure if they're technology allows for him to pay with a checking account. If that's the case, 2.75% seems a little steep and I'd be afraid of going that route. We currently use OnSite Property Manager to handle our property and it has EVERY feature you can think of but if you want to set up online payment they charge the landlord a 2.9% convenience fee. Although they do allow you to pass as much of that on to the tenant as you'd like.
How would he be unable to use a checking account? If the bank can handle his account writing a check, it can handle the ACH. It's identical technology as far as they're concerned.