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Rental homes in Florida

5 Ways to Pay Rent if You’re Behind in Florida

During unstable times where many find themselves out of jobs and running behind on bills, some may find themselves wondering how they can pay rent in Florida if they’re behind. Thankfully, there are multiple options available to individuals who find themselves in a difficult situation, including the option to take out installment loans, set up a rent repayment plan, and more! 

During uncertain times, it can be scary to find that you can’t pay your rent. Understand the options available to you to help. The rest of this article will outline the different ways you can pay your rent if you’re behind in Florida. 

Check Your Lease

Before panicking about being unable to pay your rent the day it’s due, you should check your lease agreement to see if there is a grace period. Some landlords will give tenants a grace period of a couple of days to pay their rent. This can be anywhere from five days to thirty days! 

Florida does not have a mandatory grace period like some, so this will differ between jurisdictions and landlords. 

Your rent may be late, but as long as it is paid within the grace period offered, you will likely acquire no fees, and it will not result in your eviction. If you take advantage of the grace period provided, you should ensure that future rent payments are on time, so you won’t need to use the grace period too often. 

Talk to your Landlord

Although landlords typically have a bad reputation, they’re not all bad! Some will understand your circumstances and want to work with you during difficult times- especially if you’ve been a great tenant during your time there. 

If you find yourself in a bad financial situation and unable to pay your rent on time in Florida, it’s easy to panic and look over the easiest steps you can take. 

Have an Honest Conversation

Chances are that your landlord has also had periods of financial instability. They likely know how hard it can be and would be willing to work with you. If you find yourself unable to pay rent on time in Florida, try having an open and honest conversation with your landlord before the due date.

Landlords are always going to be more willing to work with you if you are upfront and honest about your situation. Let them know what is going on in your life, what you are planning to do to fix the situation, and how late you think you may be.

Your landlord may be able to waive late fees you would normally have to pay, and they may have solutions for you, too! If you’ve been a model tenant who has paid all your past payments on time, they will likely be willing to work with you.

Keep in mind that not all landlords have massive amounts of money laying around, and many don’t have hundreds of tenants. Landlords are also people and will have their own bills and mortgages to pay. It’s important to go into a conversation ready, to be honest, and understanding- not all landlords are in a financial place to waive any fees.  

Ask About Repayment Plans

Not all landlords will be willing to do this, but some may offer to help you with a repayment plan. You may likely only have to pay part of the rent, and then pay the rest as additional fees to future rent payments.

This will allow you to have time to find a new job and feel less pressure to pay the entire bill at once.

Although this is not a super common solution, it’s worth asking about.

Manage Your Expenses

If you find yourself unable to pay rent in Florida, it is likely due to an unforeseen circumstance. You likely never planned for it and didn’t see it coming. 

If you are having trouble finding the money to pay your rent, you may have other expenses in your budget that you don’t need. Additionally, many banks may offer programs for people entering a period of financial hardship, allowing you to free up some space for rent by pushing back loan repayment dates. 

Some credit card companies offer the same thing, and can even offer lower monthly repayments to help you get on your feet. If you received student loans through the federal government, you may be able to pause your monthly payments during times of hardship. 

This doesn’t only apply to loans, either. Some phone companies are more than willing to work with customers who find themselves in a time of hardship and will give several options to help, such as a monthly repayment plan or pushing the payment date back. The same thing goes for some electric companies, too! 

If you find yourself unable to pay your rent in Florida, try looking at your current expenses and figuring out if any of them would be willing to work with you. You may be able to free up enough space in your budget to make your rent payment! 

Get an Installment Loan

If you find that you may be facing eviction and you don’t have any expenses to cut, you may want to start thinking about applying for a loan. 

You mustn’t jump into this blindly, because as with any major financial decision, it comes with its pros and cons, and should be researched thoroughly beforehand. 

What is an installment loan?

An installment loan is a contract that involves a loan being repaid over a set period of time. They have a set number of payments scheduled for specific days and can range in amount, with repayment terms being anywhere from a couple of months to as long as 30 years.

What to consider before taking out an installment loan to pay your rent in Florida

Installment loans, depending on the amount taken out, can be a large commitment, especially during a time of uncertainty. Although a great choice when needed, you should have a plan set in place on how to pay it back before you officially take out an installment loan to pay your rent in Florida.

You should know how you are going to pay the loan back each month, for the entire life of the loan. You should also consider any fees that are included in the loan, and the interest that will build as time goes on.

Take care in researching the loan and terms before agreeing. You should also be very careful to ensure you are paying the loan back on time every month so that it doesn’t hurt you financially long-term.

What you can use an installment loan for

If you find yourself unable to pay your rent in Florida, you can take out an installment loan that will help you during your time of financial hardship.

Additionally, an installment loan can help you pay for other large bills you may find yourself wondering if you can pay, such as electric, car repairs, and groceries.

An installment loan is a wonderful way to get money when you need it.

Look Into Organizations and Agencies

Depending on your circumstances there may be organizations, both local to Florida and national, that may be able to help you during your time of hardship. These entities may be able to provide you with rent relief, helping you stress less about your situation so you can spend more time getting yourself back on your feet. 

If your situation calls for it and you find yourself unable to pay your rent in Florida, some organizations may offer an application for one-time rent assistance. Additionally, some may be able to offer ongoing financial support. 

Organizations like your local Salvation Army can offer help with small things such as ensuring you have food and clothes, as well as offering financial help, offering funds for utilities and rental assistance. 

Look into Government Assistance

Chances are, no matter what your situation is, there is some type of assistance program that can help you. On top of the organizations above, there are many different government-run assistance programs that you can utilize if you find yourself in a time of need.

If you have found that you were terminated from your job, try applying for unemployment. This will help you worry a little less about the money you have in your bank account, allowing you to get on your feet.  

Additionally, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development offers the Housing Choice Voucher Program (Section 8), which you can apply for if you find you need it. This is paid to your landlord by the PHA for you, and you will only be responsible for the difference. 

There are many different assistance programs available for those in times of financial hardship, and many great options for anyone who needs them. 

Final Thoughts 

Finding out that you may not be able to pay your rent in Florida can be extremely stressful and scary. It’s important that you take a step back and look at your situation completely, understanding what you are going to need in that situation. 

Thankfully, there are so many options and programs out there for anyone who needs them. 

If you find that you have spoken with your landlord and they cannot do you any favors, look into what expenses you can manage, reach out to lenders, phone companies, and more to see if they offer any assistance for financial hardship. 

Then, look into utilizing an installment loan, or applying for assistance. No matter what your situation is, there are people out there willing to help you if you cannot pay your rent in Florida.

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