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Difficult tenants can cause a range of problems for property owners. They might ruin your furniture, they might cause damage to the property or they might even run a subletting scam to make money from your property. There are usually a couple of red flags to look out for when vetting tenants. However, no matter how hard to try to examine their background and personality, some difficult tenants will slip through.
We’ve put together some common disputes that you might encounter with difficult tenants and how you could solve those problems.
Disputes with other tenants and neighbours
Your tenancy agreement should include some clause that deals with neighbours and other tenants. In most cases, you’ll want to have your tenants and their neighbours deal with issues by themselves. However, there are times where you might need to intervene yourself.
If this is the case, you can refer to your tenancy agreement to solve disputes. This is common in cases where noise is a problem or if your tenants and neighbours are having trouble getting along. If a dispute gets out of hand, you may need to involve the police. This can happen in cases where you face anti-social behaviour from tenants or their neighbours.
Keep in mind that there are always two sides to each story, so try not to be completely one-sided when dealing with multi-party disputes.
Missing or damaged items in your property
It’s perfectly normal (and often expected) for some items in your property to suffer damage over time. However, if your tenant leaves your property in a state of disarray then you may want to think twice about their tenancy.
It’s a good idea to consider working with a property inventory service so you can take note of all the items in your property and their condition. This will help make things easier for you later if a dispute arises. You’ll be able to show your tenant proof of an item’s condition before their tenancy and pin the blame on them. Of course, if they admit to damaging an item and show responsibility to replace it or help maintain it in the future, you can let it go and maintain a positive relationship.
Tenants unable to pay their rent
While your immediate reaction might be to be frustrated or angry, it’s important to understand that most tenants wouldn’t refuse to pay rent on purpose. The best approach here is to try and understand your tenant’s position by speaking to them and asking about the rent. For example, they might be having some cash-flow problems due to being sick off work or they might have had their hours cut.
Trying to resolve the problem doesn’t mean getting aggressive. It’s important to have empathy especially if they’ve been a good tenant for the most part.
However, if you’re having trouble contacting the tenant about their rent then it can be a red flag that eventually leads to their eviction if they’re being difficult about it. While it can be troublesome to find new tenants, it’s better than having a tenant that refuses to pay their rent.