As a landlord, it’s important for you to be prepared to handle any situation, including tenant complaints. Knowing how to effectively deal with complaints and how to avoid them in the future will improve your landlord-tenant relationships.
If you fail to address the concerns of the renters, you can end up with tenant turnover and a vacant rental, which can cost you time and money. But if you succeed in resolving the tenants’ issues promptly, it’ll help win their trust and inspire them to renew their leases.
That’s why it’s important to be ready to deal with any complaints that come your way.
Here are common categories of tenant complaints:
- Maintenance Issues
- Noise Complaints
- Pest Infestations
- Issues with Pets
Let’s talk about how each issue should be resolved so you can be prepared if you encounter them while managing your rental place.
Among the common tenant complaints are property damages. This can include a broken toilet, pipe, or leaking roof. Conducting repairs requires approval from the landlord, so when a maintenance issue has been reported to you, it’s avoid any delays and proceed to the rental unit to inspect the situation.
It’s usually best to see the issue for yourself so you can decide how to promptly fix it. You can also let a trusted vendor assess the problem since they have professional expertise and can trace the cause of the issue.
As the repairs are conducted, be proactive in communicating to the tenant what’s being done. Avoid waiting for them to ask for updates and instead, tell them the expected timeframe for the repairs to be finished. After the issue has been fixed, be sure to follow up with the renter and ask for any feedback.
Noisy neighbors are a valid concern. To settle the issue, you can ask the renter to handle the issue straightforwardly by meeting with the neighbor to inform them about the noise disturbance. If the noise continues, you can resolve the complaint.
If the source of the complaint is one of your renters, this can be quick to address. You can send a notice to keep noise levels down and remind them about the covenant of quiet enjoyment.
Now, if the problem is coming from a neighbor that’s a non-renter, you can meet with them and find a compromise. But if the disturbance doesn’t stop, you can seek the help of your city law enforcers to remedy the situation quickly.
When your renters practice proper disposal of their trash and keep up with their maintenance duties, issues of pest infestations are minimal. But some rentals can still become infested with cockroaches, rats, and termites.
If this is the case, you must prioritize this problem. As a landlord, one of your chief duties according to Oregon rental laws is to create a habitable rental space.
Be sure to book an extermination service as soon as possible. Delaying can only worsen the situation and place you at risk of tenant turnovers. Also remember to inform the renter when the exterminator will arrive.
It’s recommended to schedule regular exterminations to avoid this issue in the future. You can request a packaged service if you own several units that are near each other.
Issues with Pets
You might also receive tenant complaints due to a dog’s repetitive barking during the night. Or a pet may show aggressive behavior. When this happens, approach the pet owner to determine the best solution. Remember to also send written warnings for legal purposes.
If the pet owner hasn’t been able to stop the noise, then an eviction might be necessary. Though this may seem like a drastic move on your part, you want to avoid lease breaks or losing several renters due to this situation.
Now, if the issue is about a renter who doesn’t clean up after their pets, remind them about the duties of a pet owner. If no change occurs then you can show them the lease agreement that details their responsibility for maintaining cleanliness. If the written warnings don’t yield any results, then an eviction might be considered.
How to Handle Tenant Complaints
As a landlord, practice patience and be proactive when tackling complaints. Commit to being accessible. If you always avoid the tenant, it can create a negative environment. Be a responsive landlord and provide multiple ways to contact you.
Here are additional tips when dealing with a tenant complaint:
- Offer empathy and practice active listening to truly understand the concerns of the renter.
- Even if the issue seems mild to you, discuss solutions with your tenants instead of dismissing it.
- Give a prompt response and address the tenant concern immediately.
- Keep all communication notes with the renter and the expense receipts to make sure you’re always legally protected.
- Communicate with your renter and keep them informed of the status of their complaint so they’re always in the loop.
Every tenant wants to feel reassurance that their landlord will resolve things when property issues arise. If you’re successful in dealing with complaints, your tenants will trust you to attend to their needs and will be more likely to continue renting with you.
If you need assistance in dealing with tenant complaints, you can also hire a reliable property manager to deliver excellent customer service. Are you seeking a trusted property management company? If so, contact Campus Connection Property Management today!