How to keep your tenants happy

Warren Lewis
17th September 2014

Letting agents, Property Let By Us, has released a report highlighting what they believe a landlord needs to do to keep their tenants happy. The research reveals that over half of tenants think landlords should deal with noisy neighbours, while over 80% believe the landlord should deal with problems like mould and condensation, along with pests and vermin.  One in six tenants think that the landlord should mow the grass and keep the garden tidy and 6% of tenants expect their landlord to clean the fridge and pay the utility bills.

When it comes to check-out, almost one in ten tenants think it is the landlord’s responsibility to clean the fridge and oven; 6% expect the landlord to clean the property at the end of the tenancy; and 4% expect the landlord to pay for any damage to carpets and furnishings.

The biggest gripe that tenants have with landlords is how long it takes them to deal with problems.  Nearly two thirds of tenants would like to see this speeded up as 40% of them have had to wait for up to two weeks to get problems fixed.  Half of tenants would like landlords to respond to emails and telephone calls quicker.

The survey also reveals that just 12% of tenants would like their landlord to be more approachable and friendly and a quarter think landlords are good on the whole. Just 16% of tenants want to see more legislation to protect tenants, but a third would like to see greater punishment for rogue landlords.   Nearly a third of tenants have experienced bad landlords in the past.

Jane Morris, Managing Director of Property Let By Us comments: “Our research shows that tenants have some very unrealistic expectations of landlords and this is contributing to their low satisfaction.  However, it is well documented that some landlords are poor at dealing with problems quickly and efficiently and we are constantly seeing reports of landlords who have neglected tenant safety.

Part of the challenge for the industry is to educate tenants on what they are responsible for when they take on a new tenancy.  It is also vital that landlords and agents carry out a thorough and professional inventory and that the tenant is given a signed check-in document at the start of the tenancy.  Cleaning remains the biggest issue in deposit disputes and our findings show that the majority of tenants do not believe they are responsible for mould and condensation, along with cleaning and looking after the garden.

Agents and landlords need to educate tenants about what exactly they are responsible for before they take on the tenancy.”

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