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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Oct 2010

    Default Late Fees for Non Late Rent, Water Bill Payment Applied to Late Fees

    My question involves landlord-tenant law in the State of: Texas

    My question is in regards to how a landlord uses a water payment. I sent my rent payment on 9/30 for my October rent. I have lived here for almost 5 years and never late on my rent or water bill. Rent was $850.00 and water payment for Oct was $33.48. My bank sent a bill payment to them in the amount of $883.48 on 9/30. On 10/4 I came home to a notice to vacate. I went to the office on 10/5 and showed them proof of the payment being sent to them and stated my water bill was included in that amount. The manager then told me I would owe for late charges. I told her I disputed that especially after on time payments for 5 years and never having a problem with my payments. My payment magically showed up on the 5th in the office. I feel she is retaliating against me for a complaint made to corporate office on her a week and half prior to this incident. She refused to take the late charge off. I called corp office twice and left a message to discuss the situation. No call back. I came home today to find a new note stating I owe an additional $26.52 in late charges and my water bill is now late. She took my water payment that was made with my rent check and used it towards her "late" fees of $60.00 that I am disputing with corporate office. Is she allowed to do this? What recourse do I have in this situation?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Behind a Desk

    Default Re: Late Fees for Non Late Rent/Using Water Bill Payment for Late Fees

    If the rent payment didn't arrive until 10/5, it didn't arrive until 10/5. That would be three business days from when you put in the request for your bank to mail it. My bank cautions people to allow for five business days between when they send a check and when I can expect it to arrive - does yours? What does your lease say about late fees?

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Oct 2010

    Default Re: Late Fees for Non Late Rent/Using Water Bill Payment for Late Fees

    It was sent on 9/30. I have been doing bill pay for some time and have never had my rent arrive late. Its mailed from the same city its going to. I think the most its taken is 1 day, not 6 as they are claiming. My rent is due on the 3rd. I am arguing the late fees with corp office. Late fees accrue on the 4th at 50 and then 10 per day after that. She states they received my rent on the 5th. Like I said, I've been doing this for some time. I've lived there for almost 5 years. The manager even said to me yesterday she can verify I've not been late on my rent in the past. She also allowed someone in the complex to drop off their rent on the 4th and did not charge them late fees. Obviously I didn't know my rent would be late so my rent payment included my water bill and my rent-not late fees. She used the water bill towards her late fees. She now is making me accrue more late fees on my water bill by doing this. She stated the computer automatically does this. I don't believe she can "bootstrap" my water bill to pad her late fees.

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