Property Managers are always working on client (tenant) relations and retention. Therefore, one of the most important facets of their role is to handle all complaints in a timely and professional manner. Here are some tips from PropertyManager.com on how to handle complaints from tenants.
- Document the complaint or issue immediately. While we all are sure that we’ll remember something, during the course of a very busy day things such as complaints can inadvertently be put on the back burner, resulting in an unhappy tenant, and no clear resolution to the issue. Document, document, document.
- Address the issue immediately, or as soon as reasonably possible. A routine maintenance call about a faulty appliance can quickly escalate into a complaint about management responsiveness.
- Excessive noise complaints are common, and should be investigated immediately for legitimacy and appropriateness. In the case where a noise violation has not occurred, managers should take the time to explain noise restrictions and local ordinances to the complaining party. If there is a legitimate complaint such as blasting music at midnight, the violating party must be dealt with promptly.
- Consider if a complaint is legitimate. While it is the property manager’s responsibility to process all complaints promptly, there will be times when there are no grounds for the complaint. Complaining about the off white wall colors in an apartment home is not a legitimate complaint, as the tenant was aware of the wall color prior to moving in.
- Assign each complaint a level of importance. While we want to treat every tenant complaint as important, complaints about things such as broken gates, burned out lighting, and stray pets must be placed on a higher priority list than complaints about the lack of a pool or hot tub on the property.
- Provide your tenant with a written response to their complaint. While you may want to speak to them in person, putting it in writing provides further reassurance that the issue has been dealt with in a timely fashion.