The Best Way to Pay Rent: Personal Check, Cashier’s Check or Money Order

April 6th, 2010 by

There are several different options to use to pay rent. Whether you choose to pay by personal or cashier’s check or money order, the most important thing is that you pay timely. It is possible to use one or a combination of these methods to pay your rent obligations.

Personal Check

Paying by personal check may be the easiest and fastest way to pay rent. Most likely, you have a stack of checks in your wallet or sitting at home in your desk, enabling you to make out your check anytime you would like and deliver it at your convenience. Additionally, as the only limit to the amount of your check is the funds available in your checking account, you can include other bills due to your landlord on the same check. For example, should your landlord also charge you for water, you can add this bill to your rent payment and only use one check.

Using a personal check to pay rent also has some drawbacks. Should the landlord lose your check, your bank may charge a fee to cancel that check, not to mention that you will also have to write a new check. Similarly, if your landlord delays in depositing your check, you will have to leave those funds in the account to prevent the check from being returned for insufficient funds.

Cashier’s Check

A cashier’s check is a check drawn by a bank on the bank’s account. To obtain such a check, the customer must have either cash or make a check payable to the bank and in return the bank will draw a check in their name. This means that it will be the banks’ name instead of your own appearing on the bottom of the check.

The benefit of using this type of check for your rent payment is that it is guaranteed by the bank. When printed, cashier’s checks usually come in the form of a carbon copy, making record-keeping easy. Also, there is typically no charge for a cashier’s check.

However, banks often require the customer to hold accounts at the bank or provide cash. Also, if they are lost, it could be difficult to have another one drawn. In this situation, your landlord will still need to be paid, meaning you may have to draw another check while waiting for the resolution of your claim for the original check.

Money Order

A money order is an order for the amount the purchaser wishes, payable to the recipient at any time. These checks are available at most grocery stores and post offices for a small fee. The checks are guaranteed because the funds have been paid in full at the time of purchase.

For landlords that dally in cashing checks, possibly messing up your accounting system, a money order may be the best way for a tenant to pay rent. However, if lost, there is no record and you may be at a loss for the funds and need to present additional payment to your landlord. It may also be difficult and time consuming to purchase a money order. Finally, there are often limits on the amount of funds each check can present, such as $500.00 or $1,000.00. In this instance you will have to purchase multiple checks should your rent be more than the amount you can purchase in an individual check.

There are multiple forms of payment you can use to pay your rent. Prior to signing the lease ask you landlord about his preferred method of rent payment. It may be possible that your landlord will not accept one of these forms of payment.

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