Landlord Problems of Being Too Chummy

by Nathan
(United States)

Over the years, I have had landlord problems with several tenants who seem to be looking for a spouse with a house... It's a little awkward because on the one hand, you don't want to be snippy and rude - that could provoke various forms of retaliation.

On the other hand, you don't want to get too chummy either - that can lead to expectations that the lease be relaxed, that you evict tenants in neighboring units that they don't like etc. In either case, they can end up creating repairs for you to do just to get attention or to blackmail you into being more friendly etc.

I've found that the best way out of this is to attempt to only see the tenant face-to-face once during the showing of the house. All other communication should be via email and all repairs should be scheduled when the tenant is out of the apartment.

To facilitate the logistics for the latter scenario, it is important to make sure that room mates have overlapping work schedules. Long weekends and holidays are also good opportunities to get into the apartment and do preventative maintenance.

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