As a property owner, tenant complaints are, unfortunately, a part of the job you cannot avoid. There are several different scenarios a tenant can complain about, and, it’s your responsibility to handle every situation with maturity and calmness.
After all, addressing tenants’ complaints in a timely manner is essential not only for keeping renters happy but also a way of protecting your business in the long run.
While you may not be able to control getting complaints, you can control how you respond to them. It’s always important on being efficient and professional. In addition, how you tackle tenants’ complaints depends on the nature of the issue.
Keep reading to discover how to handle tenant complaints to give you and your renters peace of mind.
Tenants can complain about anything, which means, as a property owner, you need to be prepared to tackle all situations. Some common complaints that property owners deal with include:
First and foremost, when a tenant comes to you with an issue, you must remain professional in all your interactions. No matter what an occupant is complaining about don’t react instantly, instead take the time to really understand the situation. Here are six steps you can take to calmly handle tenant complaints.
1. Listen to Complaints Carefully
As a property owner, whenever you find yourself in this situation, always take the time to listen to your tenants. Being understanding and respectful of your tenant’s problem can go a long way in keeping everyone calm.
Also, don’t try to assume anything about the situation. To better understand the matter, you need to listen attentively and ask follow-up questions
2. Be Accessible
If your tenants feel like they can’t reach you, they’ll get frustrated. Keep in mind, being accessible doesn’t mean you need to be available 24/7. Instead, establish business hours and let your renters know this is the acceptable time to make complaints unless it’s an emergency situation. And, during these business hours make sure you respond to every complaint in a timely manner.
3. Show Genuine Concern
Dismissing the concern of a tenant is an easy way to build hostility. It doesn’t matter what you think of the complaint, your renter needs to feel that you care about their concerns.
Talk to the tenant politely and assure him/her that you will take every possible step to resolve the problem.
4. Take Appropriate Actions Promptly
How quickly you take action on complaints is crucial. Based on the severity of the issue, you need to resolve the problem in a timely manner. For example, a broken lock on a door needs to be fixed immediately, whereas things like peeling paint in the kitchen or a broken bathroom tile can wait a few days.
5. Don’t Dismiss Interpersonal Issues
With the above points in mind, it’s critical to remember that some complaints will involve interpersonal problems, like noisy neighbors, instead of repairs and maintenance. While this may feel uncomfortable, handling this kind of complaint is just as essential as addressing repair and maintenance issues.
To have control over these kinds of situations, remember to add a clause in lease agreements that clearly outline the behavioral expectations of tenants so that you can take appropriate action.
6. Carry Insurance
When it comes to handling tenant complaints, having Property Management insurance is often an overlooked factor. But the right insurance policies can give you and your tenants peace of mind in case of an unfortunate accident.
When it comes to insurance, as a property manager, you need to make sure you’re carrying Commercial Property and General Liability insurance. These policies are designed to protect you in instances in instances of third-party bodily injury or property damage.
For example, say a renter slips and falls in your leasing office, you could be left with hefty legal and medical fees if you don’t have insurance.
You should also put a clause in your rental agreements requiring tenants to carry renters insurance. That way if any property is damaged inside a unit due to a fire or theft, your renters have an easy solution to help them recover.
Hopefully, this guide on how to handle tenant complaints will help you in tracking and addressing issues maturely and professionally. Remember, to keep things running smoothly between you and your tenants, always listen to their complaints and maintenance requests calmly and respond within a reasonable amount of time.