|Written by Peggy Hazelwood|
As a landlord, it's important to minimize tenant landlord problems. Part of your job of owning rental property, whether it's a house or an apartment or commercial office space, is to deal with renters. With some upfront planning and preparation, the number of tenant landlord problems will be minimized and when and if they do arise, resolving them will be easier.
Minimize Tenant Landlord ProblemsÂ (Photo credit:Â Peg Hazelwood)
Screen tenants carefully. When a landlord takes the time to qualify tenants on the basis of income, rental history, and thorough background checks, the likelihood of selecting a renter that will be a problem goes down.
Have a rock solid property rental contract. Landlords need to protect their investments by writing a legally binding rental agreement that lays out what will happen if a tenant breaks one of the rules of the rental contract.
Check often on the renter and the office space, apartment, or house that is your rental property. Dropping in on renters unexpectedly is a good habit for landlords to get into. By arriving at the apartment or house without notice, the landlord can get a good idea of how the renter takes care of the unit. It is within the landlord's rights to maintain contact and to view his property. Outline that this should be an expected occurrence in the rental agreement.
Request repairs or changes of the tenant when an issue is still small. To minimize tenant landlord problems, the landlord should stay on top of any problems, such as lawn maintenance if that is the tenant's responsibility. If the lawn is not being mowed as agreed, for example, it is within the landlord's rights to discuss the agreement with the renter. Give specific deadlines and consequences for making the changes.
Give a verbal warning. Landlords should first give a verbal warning to a tenant to address an issue. If this does not resolve the problem, see Step 6.
Put the warning in writing. Send a written letter to the tenant advising the tenant of the problem, a date to resolve tenant landlord tenant problems, and include the line item from the rental contract or rental agreement to back it up.
Work with the tenant and show good faith to avoid problems. If a renter is having a personal problem paying the rent, such as being laid off from work, for instance, give the renter a defined time to come up with the money. Show compassion but be firm to protect your investment.