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barristerinky
barristerinky, Attorney
Category: Landlord-Tenant
Satisfied Customers: 37804
Experience:  Attorney over 16 years, landlord 26 years
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I have a (FL) tenant who thinks he can make the rules and

Customer Question

I have a (FL) tenant who thinks he can make the rules and during the year on 6 different occasions paid half the rent late in the first week of the month and the second half in the 3rd week of the month. The contract specifies that a late fee will be applied to each late payment. Can I charge 2 fees in the same month and deduct from his security? I told him there would be no waiver of late fees even though it wasn't enforced throughout. It was a struggle getting paid. Thank you for your expert advise.
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Landlord-Tenant
Expert:  barristerinky replied 1 year ago.

Hello and welcome! My name is ***** ***** I will try my level best to help with your situation or get you to someone who can.

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If the tenant is under a fixed term written lease contract and it specifically states that a late fee will be applied to each payment, then yes, you can impose such a fee as this is something that would have been subject to negotiation at the beginning of the tenancy. When the tenant agreed to enter into the lease, they agreed to all the terms in it.

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FL law doesn't cover late fee payments, but I would opine that as long as it is reasonable, if the tenant challenged it in court, it would be upheld.

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And if there were fees of damages due at the end of the tenancy, they can be deducted from the security deposit as long as they are detailed in any security deposit damage letter...

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As an aside, in addition to being an attorney, I have also been a landlord for over 26 years...

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thanks

Barrister