One of the most important things that you can do as a landlord or property manager is foster a good relationship with your tenants. If you are on good terms with your tenants, and you have a relationship built on trust and communication, things will be much easier for you.
By keeping open lines of communication, and treating your tenants with respect, you can avoid acrimonious and difficult disputes about lease policies, move-outs, security deposits, and dozens of other issues.
So, how can you best improve your ability to communicate with your tenants? Here are a few of our top tips. Read on, and see how you can become a better landlord - and enjoy a better relationship with all of your tenants.
1. Have An "Open Door" Policy
The first thing you should do is make it clear that you are always available to talk to your tenants, and willing to respond to their questions. Whether it's a question about their lease, a request for a rent payment extension, or an issue with a different part of your facility, tenants should always feel comfortable contacting you.
This "open door" policy has a number of benefits. It makes tenants feel valued and appreciated, it helps you keep on top of maintenance and repair issues, and it ensures that you foster an atmosphere of mutual respect with all of your tenants.
2. Always Respond to Repair Requests as Quickly as You Can
We know that being a landlord isn't easy - and when you're juggling the dozens of responsibilities property ownership entails, it's not easy to schedule emergency repairs, or respond to every repair request.
However, a landlord that is unresponsive to service and maintenance requests is one of the primary issues reported by tenants when they're asked about how they feel about their landlords.
To make sure that you prioritize repair requests properly, it may be a good idea to set up two different repair hotlines with a service like DialMyCalls.
You could create an emergency hotline where tenants can report things such as gas leaks and utility issues, broken windows, water damage, plumbing problems, and other emergency problems.
Then, you can create a different repair line for less-than-critical repairs, such as fixing holes in walls, repainting, and other primarily-aesthetic issues.
This lets you prioritize emergency maintenance, and still be aware of all other maintenance requirements of your tenants. That's a win-win![click to continue...]
The goal of a homeowner's association is to protect everyone's investment in the property they own in the neighborhood or subdivision. Unfortunately, homeowner's associations are notorious for stringent and misguided rules and regulations, and there's a stereotype of enmity and adversarial behavior surrounding these otherwise useful organizations. One of the best ways to keep your HOA productive to your community is to get as many people involved as possible. But to do that, you need to organize productive, streamlined meetings that actually get things done, and lets everyone have a voice. These tips can help you plan and organize streamlined, efficient, and effective homeowner's association meetings.
1) Prepare an Agenda and Stick to It
Planning can help you avoid needlessly lengthy and chaotic meetings that, in the end, don't actually get much accomplished. A good meeting agenda provides a "road map" that everyone can follow to make sure objectives are met. Here are some of the things you may want to include in your HOA meeting agenda.
- Executive session. This part of the meeting is only for leaders, and can be either before or after the open board meeting. This part is confidential, and you can create and disseminate your own materials for it beforehand. The Davis-Stirling act actually limits what you can discuss confidentially at these times. This can include legal issues, contracts, disciplinary hearings, issues with personnel, payments, and foreclosures.
- Call to order. This initiates the board meeting.
- Ratifying the last meeting's agenda. This part is for discussing what happened at the last board meeting.
- Old business. You can set aside time to discuss unresolved issues from the last meeting, or things you tabled because you ran out of time.
- New business. This section is for new items that you're introducing for discussion at the current meeting. This can include things that are covered at every meeting, like budgeting or financials.
- Open forum. An open forum for members allows everyone to have a chance to bring up things that they'd like to discuss. You can introduce time limitations to avoid overly long meetings.
2) Create a Community Suggestion Box
One way to avoid overextending your HOA meetings is to ask members to submit items for discussion in writing, in advance of the meeting itself. These proposals should ideally include enough information and background to help you anticipate how much time might be spent on questions and discussion. This prevents your meetings from bringing time-consuming surprises that drag out the meeting long into the night.[click to continue...]
If you manage an assisted-living facility or a retirement community, summer can be a dangerous time. Elderly folks are more susceptible to issues like heatstroke and dehydration, making them more likely to be seriously harmed by prolonged exposure to heat.
Because of this, residents of your retirement community or assisted living facility are at disk during summer heat waves. However, with some basic precautions, you can keep all of your residents safe and secure - even during the hottest summer weather! Read on, and learn about 5 simple tips you can use to keep your residents cool, happy, and safe!
1. Make Sure Your HVAC Units Are Functioning Properly
Ideally, this should be done in the late spring. If you have central A/C, have a professional HVAC specialist come in and analyze the overall health of your A/C systems. Vents, ducts, and HVAC units should be checked for functionality.
If your community uses window A/C units, the same advice is applicable. Have an HVAC technician check each and every window A/C unit. If one goes out while a resident is at home, they could be in serious danger - especially if they're sleeping and don't notice until things have already heated up.
2. Try to Minimize Time Residents Spend Outdoors - and Cover Up!
Prolonged sun exposure can be very harmful for your residents, and being outside in the summer heat can take a toll on their physical health. Strenuous outdoor activity dramatically increases the chances of heat stroke and heat exhaustion, so outdoor activities should be limited as much as possible.
You should minimize the time that your residents have to spend outdoors, and have staff members on alert, observing individuals who choose to go outside, and who may be at risk of problems like heatstroke or heat exhaustion.[click to continue...]
DialMyCalls offers a community reminder service that is used by thousands of neighborhoods and property management groups all across the United States and Canada. Communities rely on our service to send out important notifications to residents such as, road closure notices, rent reminders, event notifications, boil water alerts, property inspection reminders, and much more. Let's take a quick look at how Wilder Balter utilizes DialMyCalls:
Why Did Wilder Balter Need a Community Reminder System?
Wilder Balter had each property manager typing up messages and hand delivering them to residents which consumed a lot of time and resources. The search for an easier solution to notify all residents brought them to DialMyCalls' community reminder service.
Why Did Wilder Balter Choose DialMyCalls?
Wilder Balter liked the features that DialMyCalls offered. They love sending out a phone blast, hitting everybody without having to go door to door.[click to continue...]
Communities all over the United States have formed their own protection brigades against crime. These Neighborhood Watch Programs are designed to cut down on crime by having members of the community patrolling the streets. Fully supported by the National Sheriffs' Association, Neighborhood Watch Programs have been protecting our streets for over four decades.
Communities that are experiencing a sudden surge of crime will often band together to form a Neighborhood Watch program. If you are considering starting a neighborhood watch program in your community, here are a few tips to help get it off the ground:
1. Plan Your First Meeting
This is important to ascertain the level of interest in a Neighborhood Watch program from other community members. Include as many community members as possible, including renters, teenagers and local businesses. Successful Neighborhood Watch programs rely on members from all parts of the community.
2. Pick a Captain
This should be a respected community member who is willing to be in charge of the neighborhood watch program. Look for someone who is a self-starter and able to delegate assignments and tasks.[click to continue...]
In today's modern, fast-paced world, it can often be difficult to stay connected with our neighbors, and our local community. This is just an unfortunate fact - people are more inclined to spend time indoors on social media and interacting with each other virtually than they are to spend time with one another.
But this doesn't have to be the case! With a little bit of effort, some simple tools, and a few helpful techniques, you can help keep your neighborhood connected, and stay acquainted with your friends, neighbors, and community members!
Check out this list of 5 great ways to keep your neighborhood connected - and help make your community a better place:
1. Create a Neighborhood Directory
This may seem like an old-fashioned thing to do - but collecting the basic information about everyone in the neighborhood is a fantastic way to keep everyone connected.
In a neighborhood directory, you should seek information like the names, phone numbers, and email addresses of everyone in the neighborhood. Lists of the children in the neighborhood and pets such as dogs and cats can also be helpful.
Collecting this information gives you a chance to connect with neighbors who you may not otherwise interact with - and helps bring your community together.
And once compiled, this neighborhood directory is a fantastic way to connect with new people in your neighborhood. You can greet them with a plate of brownies, a smile, and a list of everyone in their new community! This makes it easier for them to connect with neighbors and their families, and allows them to feel welcome in your neighborhood!
2. Host Neighborhood Events - And Start a New Tradition!
Nothing brings people together like a party - so if you begin hosting neighborhood events like a yearly summer block party, you can really connect with your neighbors, and start a new tradition in your neighborhood!
If you and just a few of your neighbors take initiative, it's easy to start a yearly potluck or a barbecue that's open to all residents of the neighborhood. Use your neighborhood directory, flyers, and signs to spread the word about your fblock party!
A potluck block party is a fantastic idea because it minimizes the work that any one individual must do. Even though you're planning the event, you don't have to prepare all of the food. Everyone brings something - and many hands make light work!
And if your party goes well, this could easily become a yearly tradition! Best of all, you can rotate planning responsibilities throughout the residents of your neighborhood - so you won't always have to spend a bunch of time planning the parties![click to continue...]
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