To convey that argument to your landlord and buy you additional time, use the rent hardship letter template in this article.
Besides getting sick of social distancing, here’s something else you probably have in common with many people right now: The inability to pay your rent due to a loss of income or work from COVID-19.
Although many monthly payments are moving towards a freeze right now until things get back to normal, your landlord may not be so lenient.
Before you get evicted or ignore the problem altogether, you should write a hardship letter to not only explain your issues, but also to get extra time to pay your landlord.
Here is a simple template you can use as a guide. Edit it to include your information or add any extra details you wish to use to bolster your argument.
Hardship Letter Template for Delinquent Rent
[Your phone number]
[Your email address]
Dear [Landlord’s name],
Due to [describe your hardship briefly, which could be COVID-19 lockdown, in this example], I will not be able to pay next month’s rent by [Your rent’s due date]. These circumstances were completely unexpected and are a one-time occurrence.
Paying my bills on time is of utmost importance to me, as is being a good tenant. I am doing my best to be proactive in response to this unfortunate situation by [describe how you’re seeking extra income, looking for a job, applying for assistance, etc.].
As I do this, I would like to ask for [An extension, a payment plan, a reduction in rent, etc.] to ensure that I can pay you the full rent amount as soon as possible.
I apologize for any inconvenience due to this issue, and I thank you for your understanding and consideration. If necessary, you can reach me via my phone number or email address listed above to discuss this further.
Tips to Make Your Rent Hardship Letter Better
The more details you can include in your letter, the more persuasive your argument will be. Unless it’s specifically listed in your lease via a hardship clause or evictions are put on hold (as is the case in some states due to COVID-19), your landlord doesn’t have an obligation to let you skip this month’s rent.
For this reason, it’s best to put your all into your hardship letter and be as convincing as you can.
As you explain your issue, here are some tips to get the desired outcome:
- Discuss how the hardship specifically affected your life and altered your income.
- With COVID-19, for instance, you could say that you lost hours at work, were laid off, or the business where you worked was forced to shut down.
- Be factual and not emotional.
- Be polite and ask for their understanding, instead of being demanding in your tone.
- Stress how you will fix the situation. This may be more crucial than describing why you can’t pay the rent, as the landlord wants to know when and how they will receive payment before they accept your request.
- Polish your letter by describing how you’ve been a good tenant by always making timely payments, keeping the property in excellent condition, etc.