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Expert Advice at a Glance: How to Collect on Bad Checks and Avoid Receiving Them in the First Place

Brenton Hayden is the president and owner of Renters Warehouse, a soon-to-be franchised property management company in MN and AZ. He has created a series of 10 easily understood lists related to residential real estate for property mangers, landlords, and tenants.

Minneapolis, MN, October 29, 2010 --( Brenton Hayden is the owner of Renters Warehouse, a soon-to-be franchised property management co. in MN and AZ. He has created a series of 10 easily understood lists of expert advice related to residential real estate, guidance for renters, and counsel for landlords. His expertise stems from his experience as president of Renters Warehouse, owner of their new sister residential real estate company Pink Blue, and as owner and producer of a morning real estate advice show on AM 1280 WWTC the patriot. Brenton also special guests host on AM 1500 ESPN radio Sundays from 7am to 8am.

Renters Warehouse is unique in that Brenton has created a niche market for the organization with unintentional landlords. 60% of the business is traditional property management for real estate investors and companies, however 40% is "unintentional landlords." For people who are struggling during this tough economy to stay in their homes, Renters Warehouse services helps them keep their homes, rent them and create rental income thus reducing much of the stress that comes along with being a landlord.

How to Collect on Bad Checks and Avoid Receiving Them in the First Place

1. Put a NSF (Non-Sufficient Funds) or returned check policy in the lease. This policy should give a timeline in which it must be re-paid and also a fee associated with this. Common fees vary from $20-$65.

2. Some landlords require only ACH/Auto withdrawal or cashiers check/money order as rent payment. This will avoid dealing with bad checks in general. Many banks offer an ACH service.

3. Know the laws surrounding issuance of a bad check. Some city and state police departments will get involved to help you collect because it is illegal in many areas to write a bad check, sometimes even considered a felony.

4. Have a pre-written response or collection letter written. Renters Warehouse uses one referencing Minnesota statutes and fines and/or punishments for issuance of a bad check.

5. Are you a skilled collector? If not, get to know or hire a vendor or a collection agency. They often can help with this. However, they commonly will charge a percentage of the check to collect. Typically this fee is around 25%.

6. Know the small claims court system. If landlords can't collect on their own, for a nominal fee and a day in court they can present the case to a judge to obtain judgment.

7. If a stop payment is received on a check, know that those are typically only good for 6 months. Hold that check and re-run it 6 months from the
date, odds are it will be good then.

8. After receiving a bad check from a customer, avoid making the same mistake twice. Only accept guaranteed funds hereafter.

9. Be careful of partial repayments without a payment arrangement agreement. Sometimes the laws around bad checks state that partial payments constitute a payment arrangement and can affect your ability to collect the full amount. Everything should be recorded in writing.

10. Be careful of starter checks or counter checks. It's good practice to not accept these sort of checks.

Watch for Brenton's other lists of expert advice. The hot topics covered in the Expert Advice At A Glance series include:

• 10 Tips for Being an Absentee Landlord
• How to Avoid Late Rent Payments
• 10 Reasons Not to Sell
• How to be a Good Landlord
• How to be a Good Renter
• Top Tools that Support You as a Landlord

Visit to learn more about the company and Brenton Hayden.

Contact Information
Renters Warehouse
Krista Varley
(952) 470-8888
Krista's phone number: 612-877-4500

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