Whether you like it or not, at some point in your property management career you will encounter messy tenants. Above all, the fear of messy tenants is that they will damage the unit and bring down the value of your property. Your property is your business and it’s easy to take messy tenants personally. Here are a few ways you can handle messy tenants.
It can be somewhat difficult to identify which tenants will be dirty before they sign the lease unless you have a firsthand account from previous landlords. A good screening may help to weed out the people who will cause a mess which is why you need to ask specific questions regarding their habits to determine what type of people they are.
It’s important to be able to identify what is really considered “messy” and what is worse than the average wear and tear.
Messy tenant behavior includes:
- Leaving garbage in the apartment for an extended time
- Hoarding of any kind
- Any signs of pests or rodents
- Damage to the unit or any of the appliances
- Signs of mold on walls and in the bathroom
- Strong smells coming from the apartment
Messy tenants can be problematic as the mess can lead to damage to your property. One of the ways you can combat this is by adding a clause in your lease that says you can hire a cleaning service to go in to clean the apartment if necessary. This gives you some peace of mind knowing that if it gets dirty you have the power to remedy this. When the tenant moves in you can go over the maintenance required of the apartment and what is expected of them as tenants. The key to handling messy tenants is addressing the problem early. Communicate to your tenants that they can contact you if they have any issues and you or the designated property manager should be the first point of contact if there are any problems. Your property is how you make money and you’ll want it looking its best at all times.