There is a huge cost involved when you and your renters do not have a healthy relationship.
For instance, your disgruntled renters could intentionally miss paying on time or purposely neglect your property. If the relationship eventually turns bitter, you’ll be forced to evict them which could incur you more costs such as eviction-related expense, vacancy cost, and tenant placement fees.
On your part, your dismay with renters could mean your delays in addressing their maintenance requests which, in turn, will cost them money just to ensure their health or security. They may eventually be forced to cover for rental repairs to avoid compromising their living conditions. Eviction would be another financial blow as it would mean paying for moving cost and a possible higher rent price with another rental.
These instances prove that in a bad relationship, both of you and your renter suffer not only from undue stress but also from financial distress.
Why Disagreements Arise
As much as you and your renter want to avoid conflicts in your relationship, it is not always possible. Knowing why disagreements happen will make it easy for you to resolve them, and help you avoid filing an eviction or for the renter filing housing-related complaints.
Miscommunication is among the top reasons why differences arise between you and your renters. The quickest way to resolve this problem is to lay down and discuss your expectations with your renters from the very start. Once done, formalize your agreements in the lease contract.
Failure to Address Common Renter Complaints
It’s hard enough to keep track of complaints from renters even if you are just managing one or two properties, more so with multiple homes. Without a system in place to respond to their calls or address their concerns, the situation is left hanging without a clear resolution. This will cause further renter disappointment.
Among a myriad of common renter complaints, these three reasons easily breaks the owner-renter relationship apart:
Housing discrimination is illegal and renters — people of color, seniors, disabled, or those who belong to different religions — are pretty sensitive about it. Though not intentional, you may be unaware that you are displaying behaviors that show disfavor in some situations like:
- limiting or not letting them use certain common facilities like parking areas, recreational areas, or lifts
- responding faster or giving preferences to “favorite” renters on maintenance requests.
- quick reprimand for minor lease violations while not punishing other renters who commit the same
- displaying harassing behaviors when collecting rent payments
- altering the lease agreement during the lease because of changes in the familial status, for instance, a single renter becoming married or a couple renter having a baby.
- running unscheduled inspections or barging in the property without advance notice
Non-responsive to Maintenance Requests
Nothing disappoints renters more than a homeowner who shows a lack of concern for their maintenance needs. Failure to address their requests on time compromises their living conditions. As a general rule, you are required to fix non-urgent repairs in 30 days and no more than seven days for urgent repairs. If you fail to respond and make repairs within this period, your renter may file a complaint against you.
Sometimes homeowners barge in and go through the renter’s belongings without a valid reason or advance notice. This is an illegal act because your renter also has the right to privacy. So entrance to the property must be legally done to honor each other’s rights.
How to Improve Your Relationship With Renters
To protect your investment and earn the trust of your renters, take the initiative to build a respectful relationship that will not only prevent complaints against you but also make your renter return that favor through good behavior.
Embody the Traits of a Good Homeowner
Renters also aspire for a peaceful and happy renting experience. They are drawn to homeowners who show these positive traits:
- Professionalism in their manner of conducting business
- Organized time and rental management
- Respectful and considerate of renter’s space or privacy
- Approachable and not judgmental of renter’s condition or situation
- Trustworthiness in exchanges of communication and providing maintenance
- Reliable and quick to address renter issues
- Transparent with no hidden agenda
Regular communication is one of the best ways to build a healthy relationship with renters. It is also a key factor in effectively managing your property since checkpoints with renters give you an idea of impending maintenance issues. You can then address them long before these issues require costly repairs.
Good communication also promotes the responsiveness of renters, and strengthens your relationship even more. To do this, determine how your renter prefers to receive messages or notifications from you. To be considerate of your time and theirs, set a fixed time of the day when you can take non-urgent calls.For a good measure, always document your interactions.
Know Your Responsibilities
Not being keen on your legal obligations to your renters may make you commit acts in bad faith that compromise your relationship with them. Taking the initiative to know what they expect from you and the home they rent will make you a responsible homeowner.
Make sure as well to prepare a legally compliant lease by seeking guidance from a legal counsel. To stay in the know about the rental business, consider joining local homeowner associations where you will benefit from learning more about the important updates on rental laws, hearing from others property management experiences, and getting more information on legal advocacies.
Work With a Property Manager
Enlisting the services of a property manager is a step up to developing a professional and strong bond between you and your renter. They have the insights on what you and renters are aiming to achieve in the whole renting experience. They also have the systems in place to deliver the services that both of you need.
Poplar Homes Enables Strong Owner-Renter Relationship
Our full-stack services help build trust and rapport with renters on your behalf, gaining their loyalty. At the onset, our thorough tenant screening process helps steer clear of problem renters to ensure that rent payments are paid on time and that your homes are taken care of. When it comes to repair issues, our 24/7 maintenance support is ready to take calls from renters and take immediate actions, avoiding problems from getting worse. You also need not worry about committing legal violations as our services are designed to adhere to all applicable rental laws, giving you a win-win situation.
Fostering healthy relationships with your renters benefits your business most of all. The owner-renter dynamics can be difficult at times, yet there is always a way to work around it. Keeping in mind your obligations as an owner and their rights as renters will help you find the common ground that is favorable for both of you. With this, you will be able to help each other achieve your individual goals — steady income for you and peace of mind for your renters. Business-wise, this is a sound strategy that will help you profit more from your investment.