Tenant complaints. It’s the number one reason why many real estate investors get out of the most lucrative business in America.
How do you deal with them without losing your sanity and your great investments?
What about those disputes between [tag-tec]tenants[/tag-tec]? You know, one gets mad at the other for _________ or ________ or ________.
I had a situation like that first thing Monday morning.
A [tag-self]tenant[/tag-self] was angry because of his neighbors, who are also my [tag-ice]tenants[/tag-ice].
He wanted to vent. He did it with an email sent to me at 5:45 AM.
(How did he know I’m already up and at the computer that time of morning?)
To make a long story short, he wants his utility bills reduced because he thinks his neighbors are using too much electricity and water and he is having to pay the difference.
(We had community meters, which I don’t recommend, but at this property that’s the only way we can do it.)
I let him say his piece in order to make peace.
In other words, if they want to vent, let them.
I also compromised a little. I gave him a 1% reduction in his utilities. Instead of paying 16% per month he will be paying 15%.
How much does that really translate out to?
A couple of dollars.
So what, he’ll be getting one of those expensive nutty coffees from Starbucks instead of me. He can have it, frankly. That stuff can be lethal to 50 year olds.
Then I went to my other tenants and politely talked about the weather and the air conditioner and how we really don’t need as much A/C in October as we did in August.
“Yeah, we’ve already turned it down,” they said.
Problem solved- for now, anyway.
However, if I hadn’t mediated, what would could have been the results?
He would have moved.
Yes, that’s right. They will move over small things like that.
Here’s a very interesting piece from the Outer Banks Blog about how to handle complaints.
It’s written by a lady with plenty of experience dealing with motels.
It’s full of gems. Print it out and save it. It will save you a lot of time and money if you have a tenant problem in the future.