Keeping in regular contact with your tenants is important in helping to keep an open line of communication. They need to be kept up to date on repairs being done on the facility, any issues surrounding security and upkeep of the common areas, any rent increases, and any notices for when you will be on site. It’s also important not to communicate too frequently to the point it seems invasive to the tenant. Here is a guide for communicating with your tenants.
Be professional and respectful
Use polite language when sending emails or speaking in person. “Please” and “thank you” can go a long way in helping your tenants feel respected. When communicating with tenants, it is best to think of them as customers or clients. In the long run, being respectful to your tenants and responsive to their needs can help lower your turnover.
Depending on the number of units and tenants you have, you might want to consider automating any regular emails. This can be emails like rent-due notices, lease renewal reminders, and any other regular or semi-regular generic emails that are sent out to your tenants. These can be useful reminders for your tenants and automating can help save time and prevent any issues from forgetting to send an email.
Contact during business hours
Just like when you get home, you prefer not to be contacted, tenants also don’t like to be contacted during their off time. Try to stick within reasonable business hours unless there is some sort of emergency. If your tenants do contact you about something that needs to be resolved immediately, it would then be OK to respond. Otherwise, a response can wait until the following day.
Be responsive and accommodating
There should be multiple ways for your tenants to contact you. You should have a work email, an office phone number, a cell phone, and an emergency number for tenants to contact if something needs to be taken care of immediately at any time of the day. You should also have an online portal where tenants can log and submit any requests for maintenance and repairs. This will help you keep track of any tasks that need to be completed as well as keep a record of costs and repairs.
Try to respond as fast as possible. Even if you don’t have an answer immediately, try to respond to let your tenants know you will be looking into the matter as soon as you get a chance. Keep a list of requests from your tenants to make sure you don’t forget because tasks should also be completed in a timely manner.
Keeping thorough records will help you keep track of incomplete tasks as well as any costs and time dedicated to resolving issues. Try to keep communications through documented mediums like email. If you speak to a tenant on the phone, you can send a follow-up email to the tenant confirming his request. Another great way to document requests is to have tenants submit them through a web portal. This will ensure all requests are kept in one place and can easily be referenced.
We’re all human
Mistakes can be made, and tempers can rise. It’s important to be patient with your tenants. They can be frustrated, or going through rough times and may not be respectful in their communications. It’s your responsibility to be patient and respectful to your tenants. De-escalation can give your tenants a positive experience and improve future communications. It is also OK to admit any mistakes or errors on your end.