How To Collect Bad Debt?

Friends -

At the risk of repeating my June, 2008 post regarding this subject, I wanted to again ask for your thoughts on how to collect bad debt.

Anne Gerber suggested, but other than that, I did not receive many specific suggestions on how to collect bad debts.

My situation is that I have approximately $6,000 owed to me from eight evicted tenants. Most of what is owed is rent, but some is for damage. Either way, I have court-issued judgements in my favor.

Please let me know your thoughts.

Thank you,



My nephew used to be a debt collector. They received 50% of debt collected. They were thrilled if they could collect 50-60%.

That means you would get $1800 or less on what you are owed. Hardly a windfall.

Most attorneys find this type of law distasteful.

Today I talked with an attorney at a large law firm here in OH. They specialize in debt collection, foreclosures, replevin actions, etc. $700 - $2500 per filing, up front.

Now I know why certain individuals hire “Vinny” for $200 plus a case of beer.


You realize the next question is “What is Vinny’s number?” :wink:

Hello JL,

You have cleared the 1st hurdle. Get a judgement.

Next step…Give them 30 days to pay you in full.

If they do not reply, and/or they choose not to pay…

1099 them for the amount owed.

They now have a judgement, and they owe the FAT UNCLE in DC taxes and penalties for unreported income.

All this satisfaction w/o having to pay an attorney or collections agency.

ROI?? Good Nuff!!



Report bad debts of tenants to all 3 credit bureaus; Experian, TransUnion and Equifax.

Many, many visitors to ask the question: "How can I report tenants to the three credit bureaus? Good news! Landlords are now able to report a resident’s debt to the big three (Trans Union, Equifax and Experian). You can report the tenant’s debt quickly and easily for one low flat fee of only $12.95. There are no additional registration or membership fees to use this service.

As part of the service and that low price, you get the service of a collection company, which will send a letter notifying the tenant of money owed and pending action of reporting the debt to all three credit bureaus which will result in the debt appearing on their credit reports. However, there are no commissions or contingency fees charged to the landlord for this service. You receive 100% of the amount due, if the tenant wants to avoid having the debt reported or should the resident want to clear the debt off their credit report after the fact.

NOTE: I have not ever been, and/or am not currently affiliated with Mr.Landlord. I have just used their services.

Hope this Helps,