LEGAL WRANGLING: Tenant says landlord unreasonable for wanting his rent on time

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September 30, 2016

A landlord is threatening to serve notice on his tenant to leave his premises because she does not pay her rent on time.

According to the tenant, the landlord is very unreasonable because her rent is never in arrears, as she ensures it is paid before the next rent is due.

"I have been renting a two-bedroom house in Portmore, St Catherine, for the last five years and I have never owed a month's rent," she explained.

"I will admit that although the rent is due on the 30th of every month, I usually pay it two or three weeks late. It is better to be paying the rent late than not paying it at all. My landlord is not pleased with my method of paying the rent and is always quarreling with me.

"He really upset me a few months when he came to collect the rent. He said I must do better because when I pay my rent late, he has to be paying late fees on his mortgage.

"I told him I don't business with his mortgage, I only business with my rent, so he should not bring his mortgage problems to me. My landlord began shouting that I was rude and out of order and he was going to give me notice.

"The landlord has some friends who live on the street and they joined in the argument, telling me I must pay my rent on time. I am not afraid of them and I answered them, telling them that I will pay the rent at my leisure.

THREE MONTHS' RENT

"I told the landlord that he was being very unreasonable. I even pointed out to him some houses on the street where the tenants owed more than three months rent and their landlords do not quarrel with them.

"The landlord said perhaps those landlords got their houses free and that is why they don't take action against the tenants for their rent or give them notice to leave. He said he worked very hard for his money to purchase the house, so he cannot have me doing as I please with his rent.

"I told him I did not only have rent to pay, but I had to buy food and pay other bills and take care of my two children. He left saying that on his next visit, he was going to give me notice. I think my landlord is very unfair because I am doing my best to pay the rent. I really don't think paying the rent two or three weeks late should be a problem to the landlord.

When you rented the premises from the landlord, you entered into an agreement to pay him the rent within a specified time, which was the 30th of each money. Some landlords give their tenants a few days extra to pay the rent. If you are having a problem in paying your rent on time, you should have explained the situation to the landlord. You cannot blame the landlord for demanding that the rent be paid on time, because there is an agreement between you and the landlord for that to be done.

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