How best to deal with tenants to be a good landlord

How best to deal with tenants to be a good landlord [Photo: -Oxford- via iStock]

Tenants and landlords have one of the most difficult working relationships around, with issues cropping up from time to time that can leave either party, or both, feeling annoyed or as if they have been hard done to. One of the main problems that this can cause this happen, however, is simply that the two parties have a break down somewhere in the relationship, which makes it difficult for them to work together in harmony. 

For this reason, it's vital that both tenant and landlord are happy in their relationship with each other, and the landlord has to take responsibility for this, making changes and a concerted effort to ensure that they build a solid and trustworthy working relationship with their tenant. Doing so will mean they have much more chance of being able to communicate openly with tenants, discussing issues and not sweeping things under the carpet as can tend to happen in rental properties. It will mean both parties being happier with the working relationship they have and feeling better about their tenancy as a whole. 

So how do landlords make the difference and ensure that they and their tenants have a strong working relationship?

Stay in contact

It's important that any landlord is fully contactable at any time, even if tenants are only receiving a courtesy message in return. Make sure when anyone contacts you with a problem or a request that you prioritise it, but most importantly, make sure you get back in touch with them. Even if it's something as simple as letting them know that you got the message and you'll look into whatever the problem is as soon as you can, simply having that contact can be enough to show the tenant that you care and want to ensure that they're happy. 

Check up on tenants

When it comes to checking tenants and properties, the most commonly used tactic in the rental market is the traditional property inspection, where a landlord or letting agent will come around to the house and check that everything is in good condition and that the property has not been damaged in any way. However, this is not something that most tenants enjoy, as they feel under scrutiny and like they are not trusted. 

A better way to handle the situation can be to simply call and check on the tenant from time to time. Most problems that occur in homes will go unreported because the tenant feels uneasy about reporting them, but if you as the landlord are getting in touch and asking how things are going, not only will they be more likely to report issues, but they will also feel like you have a genuine interest in how they are doing and how the property is. 

Be reliable

Finally, one of the best ways to make sure someone is happy with you as a landlord is to be reliable and make sure that when you promise something, you follow through and carry it out as planned. Nothing is worse for a tenant than when you promise to fix something or replace something and they have to wait months for work to be carried out or even worse, chase you up for it. 

Put simply, when you promise to get something done, it's important that you get it done to gain the trust of the tenant and ensure they are totally happy. Set them a deadline for when you expect to get work carried out, and if you don't feel like you'll be able to meet this, be sure to let your tenant know as soon as possible.