Investing in rental properties can be a lucrative business. However, it also takes a lot of hard work, time, and effort before you can reap the rewards. If you want to be successful in rental property investing, you need to know how to keep your tenants happy. After all, without tenants, you won’t be able to generate consistent rental income.
As a landlord, you will encounter different kinds of tenants with varying needs. It’s your job to understand these needs and make sure that you provide a safe and habitable property that is conducive to living. Unfortunately, no matter how perfect your property may seem, there will likely be issues that tenants will complain about.
It’s a landlord’s responsibility to address tenants’ concerns and resolve issues as soon as possible. This can help build a good rapport with your tenants and keep your tenant retention rate high. To be able to resolve tenant complaints confidently and efficiently, you first need to know and understand the common issues that most tenants complain about.
Here are the top tenant complaints and ways how to solve them:
Noisy and Problematic Neighbors
One of the most common issues many tenants bring up is noisy or problematic neighbors. Neighbors that play loud music or make too much noise are a major concern. Problematic neighbors such as those who make common areas dirty and don’t throw garbage properly also generate many complaints from tenants.
Before you try to help resolve the issue, it’s best to ask the tenants to talk to the neighbors themselves. Tenants should learn to handle problems with neighbors on their own and learn how to settle the issue amicably. However, if the situation remains the same even after your tenants tried to speak with the neighbors, then it’s time for you to take action and help the tenants resolve the problem.
If the disruptive neighbor is also one of your tenants, this situation will be easier to handle. You can refer to the clause in the lease agreement about noise and disruptive behavior. You can then consider eviction if they don’t stop disturbing the other tenants.
However, if the neighbor is not one of your tenants, you can try and talk to them to see if it can help stop the disruptive behavior. But if not, the best course of action is to report them to the authorities and refer to the city’s bylaw to resolve the issue.
Maintenance issues are also one of the most typical complaints from tenants. The good news is, that maintenance issues are easier to handle compared to neighbor issues. As the landlord, it’s your responsibility to fix repair and maintenance requests as soon as possible.
When you receive a maintenance complaint, you should go and visit the property right away. It’s best to bring someone who is knowledgeable of building maintenance so they can locate the root cause of the issue immediately. Make sure to make arrangements with the tenants on the best time to enter the property.
After you have established what the maintenance issue is, it’s important to address it and have it fixed as soon as possible. Additionally, continue communicating with your tenants to let them know the cause of the maintenance problem and what actions will be taken to remove it. Give them updates on when you expect it to be fixed too. Moreover, if your rental property is a multi-family home, it’s best to check with the other tenants and ask if they also encounter the same problem.
There are some tenant complaints that involve pets. These often relate to a dog’s barking, aggressive behavior, or waste materials. If the issue is about a barking dog, you can handle it the same way you would a complaint about a noisy neighbor. Try to talk to the owner of the dog for an amicable solution.
However, if the barkings continue despite talking to the dog owner, the next step is to issue written warnings. If the owner is also your tenant, you may have no other choice but to process eviction. However, if it’s not one of your tenants, then you can handle it the same way you would a noisy neighbor and involve the authorities.
If the pet complaints are related to messes or aggressive behavior, you can also check if there are city ordinances related to the issue. Refer to the city bylaw to help you deal with the problem.
If your property has pest issues it needs your immediate attention or you will end up losing your tenants and, ultimately, your rental income. As a matter of fact, you should not wait until you receive a complaint to take action.
Hire competent and professional pest exterminators in your area to handle pest complaints efficiently. It’s also better to hire the services of pest exterminators on a regular basis as part of your preventive measures.
As a landlord, you should know that receiving complaints from tenants is unavoidable. No matter how much you try to keep your property in good shape, there will come a time when you’re faced with a complaint. When you receive one, make sure to check on it without any bias so you can act on it rationally and effectively. When evaluating tenant complaints, it’s important to look at the issues as if you, yourself, are the tenant.
Being a landlord means handling complaints and daily rental business operations which can take up a lot of time. If you want to take this out of your daily tasks, you can opt to hire a professional rental property manager to handle these issues for you. If you’re looking for a reliable property management company in Washington, call T-Square Real Estate Services, Inc. at 425-485-1800. Our property managers look forward to speaking with you!
Disclaimer: This blog article is for informational purposes. The information contained in this blog article may not be the official policies of T-Square Properties.