Tenants, Landlords, and Leases

BREAKING YOUR LEASE: Lesson 4

What if I Don’t Pay My Rent on Time?

  • In Tennessee, your landlord can start charging a late fee for rent not paid on time.
  • The late fee cannot be charged until rent is five days late (day 1 is the rent due date).
  • The late fee cannot be more than 10% of the total rent amount.
  • If you don’t pay your rent on the due date, your landlord can give you notice to pay it within 14 days, or leave within 16 days.
  • After you miss those deadlines, the landlord can start eviction proceedings and get the sheriff involved to help get you out.
  • You will be summoned into court for an eviction hearing.
  • The judge in court can order you to pay all rent due; that is called a “judgment” and it shows as a BAD MARK on your credit report. This makes future renting A LOT harder.
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