I've been late on my rent about three times in the past year since I've lived in the complex and always paid it without issue. This past time, I decided to investigate how the late fee was calculated. The leasing manager said the late fee is 10% of the past due amount. I was fine with that until I thoroughly read through my lease and found that it says, "Late Charge: 10.00, Daily late fee: 0.00, NSF Charge: 50.00" (Notice there is no dollar sign and no mention of percentage of past due amount, etc.)
I inquired with the leasing office again on where I can find this information about the 10% late fee charge in the lease and they told me I can find that on page 1 in the same location I'd been looking. Since there is no mention of percentage or dollar sign, would it be safe to assume the late charge is really supposed to be $10.00? And in that case, does that mean the complex has gone against the terms of the lease and owes me money?
1 Answer from Attorneys
It is a question of who drafted the document. It would be construed against the drafter