There have been a number of debates about the nature of landlords/tenants relationship or property manager/tenants relationships. While some argue that you should never make friends with your tenants, there are others that insist that there is nothing wrong in a property manager being friends with his tenants.
As one of the most experienced property management company in Los Angeles, a lot of upcoming property managers have written to us inquiring how they should manage their relationship with their tenants. Here, we believe that a good landlord or property manager should maintain a middle-ground. Since your property is your business, we won’t recommend making friends with your tenant and we will also not advice against it. You should maintain a professional relationship and act like a friend once-in-a-while; this will enable you to have a more robust relationship with your tenant.
The tips below will give you an insight on how you should keep your relationship with your tenants.
Don’t Give Any Tenant Special Treatment
Giving one tenant a special treatment because you are friends with him while treating others differently is a move that may blow up on your face.
In this scenario, two things may happen; your tenant can take advantage of your friendship to do as he pleases. He can even go as far as not paying his rent along with other things that won’t make you happy thereby affecting your business negatively.
Moreover, when you give a tenant special treatment because you are friends with him, this won’t always go well with other tenants who are not friends with you. They will begin to hold grudges and may even hold it against you.
- Avoid Missing Business With Pleasure
There is an old saying that you should never miss business with pleasure. This is because it won’ always turn out well for you. You can have occasional chat with your tenants and may be even hang out with one or two of them once-in-a-while, but don’t let it be a routine.
If you must hang out with your tenants, make sure that all the tenants are involved and aware of it. You can turn it into a get together or something like that. However, nothing stops you from paying your tenants a social visit during special occasions if they are willing to have you over.
Put Everything In Writing
As a property manager, you should know that this is a serious business. Don’t allow your relationship with a tenant cloud your judgment. When dealing with any tenant, make sure you have everything in writing.
Avoid basing things just on the word-of-mouth only. Things may turn sour with your friends tomorrow and you will need an evidence to defend yourself. If you have any agreement with any of your tenants, make sure you put it into writing no matter the nature of your relationship with such a tenant.
In most cases, a verbal agreement will end up ruining your relationship with your tenant and it won’t hold up in court. Put your business first, and make sure that you always have your lease agreement as well as other agreement you have with a tenant into writing.
- Avoid Becoming Too Familiar
If you are the type of landlord or property manager that likes to hand out around the property you are managing quite often, you may likely engage in conversations each time you do this. While this can be great for building a good relationship with your tenants, doing it quite often can end ruining your relationship with your tenants.
It is quite normal for someone to lose their respect for you when you have become too familiar to them. Moreover, engaging in too many conversations with a tenant is one of the easiest ways to cross a line without knowing it. You may reveal what you would have preferred to keep secret when you hang out too many times with your tenants. Ideally, keep your relationship with your tenants at a professional level.
No doubt, if you want to ensure that you are a great property manager, make sure that you keep your relationship with your tenants at just a professional level. This will help you save your reputation. Most experienced Los Angeles Property managers do this; they don’t mix business with pleasure, you too should try it as well.