From reviewing perspective tenants to making sure the apartment grounds remain immaculate, property managers must perform a multitude of jobs. For the most part, these responsibilities are pleasant and fulfilling. However, there are other instances when you are forced to perform the more unpleasant duties of your job – including dealing with tenant disputes. If you have renters who simply don't get along, here are a few tips to help you end these disagreements quickly and peacefully:
Working With the Tenants
Complaints from tenants aren't anything new, and for the most part, these issues are easily remedied. However, there will be other times when a small squabble can quickly escalate.
The first thing you need to do is remain calm, and follow these simple tips, which will hopefully prevent the problem from getting worse:
Sit down with the tenant making the initial complaint and take their issue seriously. Ask them to cite specific examples of their neighbor's wrongdoings.
Speak with the other tenant to get their side of the story. Once again, ask them to tell you about specific incidents instead of providing with general complaints.
If there are reports of damage, document them yourself. Take photos and write down any specifics related to the damage. If the problem escalates, or if the neighbors begin threatening one another, you may need to contact the police, who will be interested in this evidence.
Talk to the other tenants. If the problem is ongoing, chances are there the other tenants who were affected. This outside information will help you determine who is at fault, and the extent of the problem.
Whatever you choose, or are instructed to do by the building's owners or you boss, remember to stay on top of the issue. No matter how minor the dispute, a fight between neighbors can escalate very quickly, and you might wind up with a building full of angry tenants, and even more complaints.
Possible Solutions to Your Tenant Problem
You've worked with both tenants to come to some sort of agreement, but the situation just isn't getting any better. Luckily, there are a few tried and true solutions that will work in almost any situation. Here are just a few:
Look to the lease for a potential solution. For example, if the issue involves damage to one of the tenant's property, this might be grounds for immediate eviction. In many cases, simply pointing this out, and reminding the tenants that they signed this lease, will be enough to solve the problem.
Provide some distance between the tenants. If the feuding renters live near one another, offer to help one of the tenants move to another floor, or if the complex is larger, another building all together. The distance will often prove the best solution to the problem. If both of the tenants are reluctant to move, Brian Davis – a contributor to Buildium – recommends offering them a break on the rent for the first month. Chances are, this enticement will be enough to persuade someone to move!
Consider eviction, or involving the authorities, if you simply cannot find a resolution. If either of the tenants is violating their lease, you may have the authority to evict them. However, before doing this, remember that this can be a very long, costly process, and you may lose out on a few months of rent money. However, if the problem doesn't have a simple resolution, or there is a crime being committed or the other tenant is being threatened, consider eviction.
Dealing with feuding tenants is never easy, and sometimes, the problem won't have a simple solution. However, if you simply remember to remain calm and work with both parties to ensure a minor issue doesn't become a huge problem, chances are you will easily come to a solution that will bring harmony back to the apartment building.
If your a landlord who privately owns multiple properties and is looking for a solution to fighting tenants, don't be afraid to reach out to a local property management company. They may have some tips for you and, who knows? You may get a great property manager out of it. Visit a site like http://www.sandiegopropertymanagement.com/ for more information.