LANDLORD-TENANT RELATIONSHIPS – TURNING SOUR INTO SWEET

Tenants and landlords need each other, but that doesn’t mean the relationship is always cordial.

Sometimes this partnership is divided by the proverbial wedge due to unavoidable circumstances, but it can also be the actions and attitudes of the people involved that create disharmony.

Here are some of the ‘lemons’ that can turn a tenant-landlord relationship sour and the role a top notch Property Manager can play in each situation.

1. ACTING OR REACTING WITH ANGER

Nasty phone messages, angry outbursts and downright rudeness are good ways to turn an amicable relationship into one fraught with tension and distrust. Not only does it make communication stressful and full of misunderstanding, it also means finding an amenable solution will be that much harder. Nothing is best resolved with anger.

Sometimes things go wrong, or repairs take longer than expected, but communicating calmly will help both parties resolve issues faster. That includes being polite during conversations over potentially contentious issues.

Property Manager:  A trusted Property Manager will remain respectful in all situations and mediate between the parties to ensure the best possible outcome for all concerned.

2. BEING DISRESPECTFUL OF PROPERTY AND PERSONAL RIGHTS.

Tenants showing disrespect to the property by mistreating it (think holes in walls, smashed windows, carpet stains and broken fixtures) won’t put renters into the owner’s good books. It will likely result in the termination of the lease. Similarly, landlords who show up unannounced, treat tenants like employees or overstep the boundaries of the contract are disrespectful to the privacy and rights of the residents.

Simple mutual respect goes a long way: tenants should show consideration for the owner’s investment, while landlords should respect that the people who live in the property want to live peacefully in a comfortable home.

Property Manager:  Will perform routine inspections to check on the condition of the property and make sure the tenant is taking good care of property. They also have an intimate knowledge of the Tenancy Act and notice periods so they can arrange for Breach Notices to be served on the tenant on behalf of the landlord if need be. 

3. HAVING MIXED EXPECTATIONS.

Everyone is busy. It’s likely the case that landlords have other work commitments, and demands on their time. A tenant who expects an owner to be at their beck and call for every issue, no matter how small, will create a frazzled relationship that induces a sigh every time the landlord receives a phone call.

By the same token, if your rental property’s hot water system is broken and you don’t attempt to fix it the same day, that’s not showing much respect for your tenant.

Indeed, a landlord could be in breach of the contract, as they have a duty of care to provide hospitable accommodation (including clean, running hot water).

Property Manager: Will source the right contractors and arrange quotes for the landlord.  They will also arrange for tradespeople to attend to the repairs/maintenance and keep the landlord and tenant informed of the proceedings and costs.

4. BEING AN UNFORGIVING LANDLORD.

A landlord who puts their renters through the wringer for an accidental breakage or a missed rent payment will quickly find themselves dealing with renters who hide damage and sever lines of communication. Even in the case of noisy renters, giving them a second chance to prove themselves is important for an amicable tenant-landlord relationship. Raining fire on tenants will result in a notoriously vacant property.

Property Manager: Will remain objective and handle all situations in a professional and calm manner. They will also keep on top of rental payments and will keep communication lines open but will be tough if the tenant is breaching their lease agreement.

5. NOT FOLLOWING THROUGH.

Unfulfilled promises, whether it’s guaranteeing a repair or agreeing to extend a lease, will result in frustration and situations that seem to drag on forever.

If you’ve promised to do it, then follow through.

The first rule is to forget ‘handshake’ agreements and get everything in writing. That way, you can protect yourself with names and dates if a promise goes unfulfilled.

The second rule is, that if you say you’ll do something, do everything you can to follow through on your word – and if you can’t, talk to your tenant and work out an alternative solution or timeframe.

Property Manager: From tenant screening to lease drafting, routine inspections to maintenance requests, a good property manager can tend to all things property related on a daily basis so you don’t have to. They will document everything and where applicable, provide copies to the landlord and/or tenant.

The relationship between a landlord and tenant relies on calm communication, honesty and respect. If tenants realise their landlord is doing their best, and landlords understand their tenants’ needs and set about keeping them happy, then you’ll both find the sugar that keeps the relationship sweet.

All property owners should make note of the above, whether they are new to the industry or seasoned property owners. One of the best ways to avoid these sometimes volatile situations is to employ an experienced and reputable property manager. They can provide the “90 degrees of separation” and act as the middle man. They can handle everything for you and their fee is tax deductible – win/win.

                              email: kooweerup@oneagency.com.au                    web: oneagencykooweerup.com.au

Landlord Property Management Tenant
Related Posts
LANDLORD-TENANT RELATIONSHIPS – TURNING SOUR INTO SWEET