When you own a rental property, it is your responsibility to ensure that your tenants are comfortable living in the property. As a landlord, you need to maintain a good relationship with your tenants as they are a major part of your income. So, keeping your tenants happy and satisfied should be among your top priorities.
Landlords should ensure that their rental property is managed properly to keep tenants content. For example, landlords should take care of leftover mail from previous tenants and ensure that the property is in top condition. By doing regular inspections and routine maintenance, issues can be resolved quickly and bigger repair problems can be avoided.
But no matter how well-managed your rental home is, complaints from tenants are inevitable. In fact, it is normal for rental property owners to receive tenant complaints from time to time. So, if you want to satisfy your tenants and retain them for a long time, it’s crucial to address these complaints in a timely and effective manner.
Usually, tenant complaints fall into these categories: maintenance issues, neighbor problems, pest infestations, and issues with pets. As a landlord, it is your duty to know how to handle tenant complaints efficiently so as to provide a habitable place for them and to keep them happy.
Keep in mind that you have to make yourself easily accessible. Tenants should be able to contact you conveniently to raise certain issues that they think you need to know. If you are difficult to contact, this aggravates tenants causing more problems later on.
But even though you don’t need to keep yourself available 24/7, it’s still important to provide tenants with easy ways to communicate with you in case of emergencies. Make sure to also provide tenants with a reasonable timeframe for addressing issues and stick to this timeframe as much as possible.
At Limehouse Property Management we believe managing tenant complaints is a great way to keep your tenants happy. So, here are the top four common complaints rental property owners often receive from tenants:
The most common type of complaint from tenants is related to maintenance and the upkeep of the property. Often, tenants rely solely on the landlord to fix these issues because they are not the owner of the property.
That is why it’s crucial to address maintenance issues right away, especially if this can affect the tenants’ way of life. In addition, attending to maintenance problems as soon as possible can help prevent these issues from becoming more serious and costly to fix.
Once you receive a maintenance-related complaint, make sure to visit the property to check the problem for yourself. Find out what is the root cause of the problem, and whether or not this is due to “normal wear and tear”. In this case, send a trained professional to fix the issue as soon as possible.
Make sure to update the tenant in writing on the progress of the resolution. If the problem is due to damage beyond wear and tear, make sure to talk with the tenant about this so that you can reach a mutual agreement regarding the expenses.
When a tenant complains about a noisy neighbor, ask them to talk to the neighbor first to resolve the issue among themselves. But if the tenant has done everything to reach an amicable solution with the neighbor, then it is your responsibility to intervene.
If the neighbor is also one of your tenants, you can talk to them and refer to the clause in the lease about noise. You can then consider eviction if that tenant doesn’t stop their disruptive behavior.
But if this does not help, you can refer to the city’s bylaw enforcement section to get help resolving the problem.
Pest infestations are one of the main reasons why tenants leave the property. Sometimes, they can even break their lease due to an uninhabitable unit. When you receive a pest-related complaint, make sure to act on it as soon as possible.
Contact a professional pest exterminator in your area to resolve the problem quickly. To prevent this issue, consider hiring this professional service for preventive measures without waiting for a complaint.
Some tenant complaints involve pets. This includes barking dogs, aggressive pet behavior, and droppings. If the complaint is about a neighbor’s barking dog, you can ask the tenant to resolve the issue amicably with the neighbor first. You can intervene if the tenant does not resolve the issue themselves.
If the complaint is related to the mess pets create, talk to the neighbors or pet owners to clean up after their pets. If this doesn’t help, refer to the city’s bylaws related to the issue. The same goes for complaints related to aggressive pet behavior.
Receiving tenant complaints is normal for rental property owners. As a landlord, you have the responsibility to ensure that your tenants feel safe and comfortable in the rental property. Make sure to listen to them carefully and try to understand the complaint before you react.
Never dismiss a complaint as unimportant just because you think it is. Make sure to attend to the problem as quickly as possible or send someone who can if you are not available. Moreover, communicate with your tenants consistently, and update them on the steps you are taking to provide a resolution to the problem.