Communication is a word we throw around a lot, but what are we really talking about when we discuss the importance of good communication?
We mean trust.
That’s what good communication inspires – trust.
When you’re communicating well with the residents in your Roseville rental property, you’re trusting each other to contribute to a positive rental experience.
Better communication with your tenants will increase your retention rates, which means less money is spent on vacancy and turnover costs. It also leads to a less stressful tenancy, and that’s good for everyone.
Based on our experience with Roseville property management, we’re sharing some best practices for landlords today. When you implement these tips and practices, you’ll find communication with your tenants is more transparent, more natural, and more effective at building trust.
Here’s what we recommend.
Be Available and Accessible as a Roseville Landlord
An open-door policy is a great way to improve communication and remain available to your tenants.
Demonstrate that you’re willing to respond to any questions and address any concerns as they arise. You want your tenants to feel comfortable coming to you with questions about the lease agreement or the property. You want them to let you know that rent is going to be late instead of having to chase them down after the due date passes. Be open and easy to reach. You don’t want tenants to dread calling you.
Be a Good Listener
Good communication actually starts with good listening. You want to be an active listener. Tenants want to feel heard. Sometimes, you won’t be able to solve their problem. But, the fact that you’re willing to hear them and validate their concerns will often go a long way.
When you’re listening, be empathetic and kind. Instead of acting like an authority figure, communicate as a partner. You’re both trying to provide a good rental experience for each other. You can solve problems when you’re collaborative. Stay professional, listen to what your tenants are saying, and ask questions to gather more information. Remain professional, especially if your tenants become emotional.
Share Expectations Early and Often
A lack of communication leads to unnecessary misunderstandings.
You can avoid potential conflicts and disputes by setting the ground rules early and sharing all of your expectations for the tenancy before a tenant even moves into your property. Discuss the lease agreement in detail, including:
- Your rent collection policy. Tenants need to know when rent is due, how much is due, and how it should be paid. They should understand late fees and other consequences of unpaid rent.
- Maintenance reporting procedures. Tenants need to know how to reach you when something breaks. Do you want a phone call or a written notification?
- Policies on pets, guests, smoking, and other activities that are allowed or not allowed. `
- Any HOA rules and regulations that may apply to the lease if your Roseville rental property is in a community.
You want to be sure that each party knows precisely where they stand in terms of responsibilities and obligations.
Document Communication When You Can
Documentation is a big part of communication. Preventing misunderstandings is important, and one of the best ways to do that is with written records and reports. Keep records, in writing, of all your communication with tenants. This will allow you to deal with problems and issues from a historical perspective.
A great way to ensure that your communication is documented is by using email. Roseville property management companies often provide portals for tenants, and that’s helpful in tracking all of our interactions and communication. Conversations can be managed online, through a tenant portal. We can track payments and maintenance requests.
You may not have a portal, but you can ask for all correspondence to be sent via email so you have a clear record of what was shared and discussed.
Be Willing to Communicate with Roseville Tenants in Several Ways
Every tenant is going to be a little bit different, and you’ll find that some tenants prefer to communicate in person and others prefer short, concise messages. As a Roseville landlord, you should provide several different methods of communication. Options are always good.
Provide your phone numbers for tenants who want to call and talk with you about certain problems or to get a question answered right away. You can also text the tenants who prefer to avoid phone calls and would rather send and receive messages. As we mentioned earlier, email allows for longer and more detailed correspondence and it’s easy to organize for documentation purposes.
Always make sure to provide your tenants with alternative ways to contact you. Give them a telephone number, text messaging number, email, and mailing address. Make sure you stay up to date with all of their contact information as well. When a phone number or an email address changes, update your records right away so you’re not sending information the wrong way.
Maintenance Communication: Do What You Say You’re Going to Do
Tenants need to trust that you’ll do what you say you’re going to do. If you promise to fix something on a certain day and you realize you’re not going to make it, get in touch with those tenants as soon as possible to reschedule. Don’t leave them thinking that you forgot or didn’t care.
Your time is valuable, but it’s not more valuable than your tenant’s time. Be fair when you’re scheduling repairs. When you make promises to your tenants, you are creating an expectation. If you don’t meet that expectation and you don’t communicate about the reasons, your tenants are going to lose a lot of trust in you.
Make maintenance a priority, and communicate with your tenants throughout the entire repair process. This will help you establish and build that trust and it will also leave your tenants feeling like you care about their comfort and the condition of your property.
We know there’s a lot that goes into communication, and as Roseville property managers, we make it a priority. Tenants are customers, and they need to be treated that way. If you have questions about communication or anything pertaining to your rental home, please contact us at Action Properties.