Part of being a landlord is equipping yourself with the skills to manage tenant complaints. Do you have the patience to handle complaints from emotional renters? Can you remain calm when facing a crisis in your rental property?
Things can easily spiral when you aren’t prepared. Additionally, learning to resolve problems in an efficient manner will often earn you happy and long-term tenants.
To reduce your stress, read this article to ready yourself for addressing the common issues you’re likely to face as a landlord. Remember, as a landlord, you’re the designated problem solver when it comes to dealing with property dilemmas. Manage the following problems from the onset, and you’ll greatly reduce the risk of quick turnovers happening in your rental!
Here are the top tenant complaints you’ll come across as a landlord:
- Maintenance problems
- Noise from neighbors in other properties or your other tenants
- Pest infestations
- Pet-related issues
We here at Evolve Nevada will present solutions you can adopt and implement in your rental property to minimize or avoid looming conflicts.
The Importance of Landlord Accessibility
Before further discussing how to manage tenant complaints, let’s first tackle the issue of your accessibility. As a landlord, your availability is crucial so tenants can be reassured that the property problems will be dealt with promptly. Are you reachable by message or calls? An absentee landlord can escalate the issue and can contribute to tenant turnover.
Make sure you’re around to listen to tenants and keep an open mind. Even if you consider the matter to be an unnecessary complaint, step into your tenant’s shoes. Let them express their thoughts freely without interruption. Once the air is cleared, you can inform them of the action you’re willing to take in order to fix the issue.
Keep a record of your agreement and communication. Should the tenant bring the matter to court, you can properly defend yourself with proof of receipts and written documents.
Dealing with Maintenance Problems
A difficult issue that often crops up with tenants is property maintenance. For example, they might have a problem with a leaky roof. They can’t do anything about it since fixing it on their own can be costly. They’re dependent on the landlord to rectify the situation.
Meanwhile, if landlords keep delaying the repair, tenants can suffer from the wait. They have to live with continuous dripping which can also damage the rental’s flooring, making it more inconvenient to stay in the unit.
As a landlord, you need to visit the property and perform an inspection. Sometimes, tenants can make an error in judgment. In the above example, the roof leak might be due to a gutter full of leaves that redirects water. There might not be any problem with the roof itself.
You can properly assess the problem or, if you aren’t confident in your identification, place the issue in the hands of your repairman so the root cause is found. Once the source of the problem is known, the right solution can be implemented.
Once the property damage is resolved, let the tenant know the reason behind the problem. Tell them the action you’re taking to fix it and the timeframe of the repair. You can check in again with the tenant for feedback after a couple of days to ensure that the issue is over.
Managing Noise Issues
Noise can bother a lot of people, especially if you have a multi-family unit or live in a densely populated neighborhood. If your renters complain about the ruckus a neighbor is creating, you can first ask them to settle the matter cordially with the neighbor.
Only when your tenants are unable to address the noise issue on their own can you step in. If the noise comes from your other tenants, then this can be easy to resolve. You just need to send a notice and remind them of the leasing agreement they’ve signed with you in relation to noise in the property. But if the neighbor is not a tenant, you can contact the police to make a formal complaint.
If the one causing the disturbance is your tenant, then you can decide on an eviction if your notice remains unignored. You can’t sacrifice the peaceful environment in your rental for one tenant’s violation. Otherwise, you’d lose your quality tenants.
Handling Pest Infestation
A pest infestation can make your rental space inhabitable. Nobody wants to stay in a bed bug-ridden rental. It would affect the food preparation and sleep of a tenant to live in a space where rodents, cockroaches, termites, or other insects thrive.
Once a tenant has brought a pest infestation problem to your attention, it’s time to take control of the situation right away. Contact the best exterminator in your local area. Book a visit immediately and inform your tenant when to expect it.
You might want to have inspections on a regular basis to ensure that your rental remains habitable. After all, you don’t want to lose your good tenants or deal with property vacancies. It’s better to spend extra on an exterminator than end up with a big hit to your income. Plus, it takes time and resources to market an empty rental.
Fixing Pet-Related Issues
Dogs are often the main culprit when it comes to tenant complaints on pets. Dogs can display threatening behavior or contribute to noise with their constant barking. Approach the pet owner to bring the matter to their awareness.
If the problem remains unresolved, send written warnings. After that, if the matter isn’t fully resolved, you can ask the pet owner to find another home for the pet or move to another rental. If the pet owner refuses, you can proceed with an eviction.
If the issue is the dog’s aggression, this must be controlled right away. Otherwise, you can lose your tenants and even put them in harm’s way.
Complaints are inevitable when running a business. The best thing you can do is learn how to resolve the issues. This is to protect both your tenants and your rental business. You’re much more likely to have the benefit of long-term tenants this way as well!
If you feel like any of the above issues are overwhelming, consider hiring an experienced property management company like Evolve Nevada! We can remove the stress from your shoulders and take care of all tenant complaints for you.