Tensions between landlords and tenants are common. Here are the main complaints landlords and tenants have about each other, as well as how to manage them.
While great communication and proactivity go a long way to establishing good relationships between tenants and landlords, it’s inevitable that tensions will crop up. It’s only natural, because both parties are approaching the property with completely different priorities and their own best interests at heart.
In our experience, there are a few common complaints that landlords and tenants have about each other, and these crop up quite frequently.
Read on to see what they are and how to deal with them.
Common Complaints Landlords Have About Tenants
For landlords, their rental property is often their most important financial asset, so they tend to focus on cost, time investment and maintaining the property’s value long-term. With that in mind, it should come as no surprise that common complaints centre on the tenant requesting too many repairs, as well as not caring for the property and tending to lawns and gardens if the property is a standalone house or townhouse.
Repairs can be costly for landlords, so it’s understandable that they may want to avoid undertaking long lists of jobs that rack up substantial bills. But there is a flip side – smaller maintenance jobs can balloon into major unavoidable repairs, with high costs to match the increased severity. That’s why we always keep a proactive eye out for budding problems, so they can be addressed quickly at a lower cost. Ignoring repairs can also lead to a drop in a property’s value and it’s appeal, so it’s wise to get it sorted as soon as you can.
2. General Upkeep
The same goes for tenants who don’t take care of the property or its green spaces. Neglecting the general, day-to-day upkeep of the property - including lawns and gardens - can mean the landlord will need to invest more money and time down the track so it can be re-leased or sold, as well as potentially leading to a decrease in value.
Taking reasonable care of the property is all part of the lease agreement, so any complaints about a tenant’s failure to do so is usually more than fair. This is a good time for property managers to speak to the tenants about their obligations, as well as to identify what might be standing in the way of them holding up their end of the agreement.
Common Complaints Tenants Have About Landlords
For tenants, the rental property is about much more than financials – it’s the place they call home, so the focus for most tenants is on making sure it’s livable, comfortable and without unnecessary stress. And just like for landlords, repairs are right at the top of the list of complaints for tenants as well.
If a landlord is dragging their feet getting repairs sorted or refusing to take care of issues, it can be worrying for tenants who are thinking about their safety and the condition of their possessions. A burst pipe could lead to water damage not just for the property, but also for tenants’ personal items, while issues with doors or windows understandably raise concerns about how secure the home is.
But it’s not just a lack of repairs that’s the problem – some landlords choose to complete repairs themselves instead of enlisting the help of a professional, which can lead to sub-standard jobs that don’t always fix the problem. We believe in the value of using professional tradespeople and can always recommend great local businesses we work with.
2. Rent Increases
Another common complaint we often hear from tenants is around rent increases. They are a normal and necessary part of a tenancy, covering landlords’ costs and keeping the rent aligned with the current market, but it’s important to keep any increases in line with your landlord’s legal obligations. In NSW, a landlord cannot increase the rent within a fixed-term agreement, unless certain circumstances apply. And more than that, it’s key for your landlord to be reasonable when raising the rent.
If you think your landlord is asking for more than the property is worth in your area or you think a rent increase may be unfair, ask your property manager to assist with helping to reach a solution on a rent increase that’s fair to both parties.
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