How To Write A Late Rent Hardship Letter

Avoiding your landlord won’t win them over if you can’t pay your rent, but a hardship letter could. We’ll discuss some tips for writing one, as well as offer a template you can use to send your letter off soon.

What’s the Purpose of a Late Rent Hardship Letter?

While you could knock on your landlord’s door (if they live nearby) and discuss your situation, a hardship letter is a more formal way of explaining why you can’t pay the rent.

Since it’s a good idea to get everything in writing when it comes to something as serious as housing, the hardship letter lets you do that while also providing a convincing argument.

How to Make Your Late Rent Hardship Letter Convincing

Details are your best friend when writing this letter. The more you include, the better your chance of getting your landlord to accept your request.

It’s important to not only convey that you can’t pay the rent on time, but to also describe why you’re having this issue all of a sudden. Don’t just write that the rent will be late. Instead, explain what’s the reason for the delay.

For instance, if you’re taking home less money in your weekly paycheck, say that, but also insert any details on why your income has been reduced. Are times tough in your particular industry? Is the company you work for laying people off?

Detailing why you can’t pay is crucial, but how you will pay later on is even more essential. This means including every step you’ve taken to boost your income or replace lost work.

Think of what your landlord’s mindset is when it comes to the rent. They simply want to get paid so they can fulfill their financial obligations.

By laying out the steps you’re taking to rectify the situation, you can put your landlord at ease, build trust, and convince them to let you pay once your money problems are corrected.

Lastly, be professional and polite in your request. If someone was demanding and rude to you while asking for a favor, would you be likely to say yes? Probably not, so don’t expect your landlord to do the same if you come off as combative in your letter or any follow-up correspondence.

Template for a Hardship Letter When Your Rent Is Late

{Your name}
{Email address (optional)}
{Phone number}


Dear {Your landlord’s name}:

I am writing to inform you that this month’s rent will not be able to be paid in time due to {put your hardship here, whether it be job loss, reduced income, or some other emergency}. This was not expected and is a one-time occurrence.

Being a good tenant and paying my bills in a timely manner is extremely important to me. At the moment, I am doing everything I possibly can to fix this unfortunate situation as soon as possible, which includes {list the things you’re doing so you can pay the rent quickly, such as going to job interviews, applying for several jobs, asking friends and family for extra work, selling your things, applying for loans or assistance, etc.}

While I make these moves, I would like to request {a payment plan, reduced rent, an extension to pay at a later date, etc.}. Doing so would help me pay you the moment funds become available.

You can contact me at your earliest convenience using my information listed above. Thank you for your consideration and understanding during this tough time.


{Your name}

Natalia Stephens

Natalia crafts informative articles on many subjects that affect peoples lives. With an eye on her own loved ones, her writing engages and resonates with younger and older adults alike. Her background includes a bachelor's degree in journalism and more than six years as a writer and researcher covering topics like retirement, senior care, and health. She also writes about college, vocational training, and career planning.