Legal Question in Real Estate Law in California

how much can I charge for late rent

Asked on 9/14/15, 12:48 pm

2 Answers from Attorneys

Timothy McCormick Haapala, Thompson & Abern, LLP

Generally a late charge that is up to 5% of the rent is universally upheld by courts. 6-8% is pretty safe. 10% and over is almost always called a void penalty instead of reasonable compensation for the late payment.

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Answered on 9/14/15, 1:04 pm
Bryan Whipple Bryan R. R. Whipple, Attorney at Law

The underlying legal reasoning is that the landlord should be able to recoup his/her/its reasonably-foreseeable economic harm resulting from the late payment (interest, additional billing costs, lack of cash to cover expenses, etc.) but that imposing what amounts to a "fine" for late payment would be a function for a judge, but not for a landlord.

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Answered on 9/14/15, 1:30 pm

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