Your job as a landlord will require you to keep irregular hours as you don’t know when a property emergency can occur. Emergencies like a broken heater in the dead of winter, flooding during a storm, or even an increasing pest infestation problem can be emergencies that you need to attend to too quickly.
At Keyrenter Premier, we believe learning how to manage after-hours emergencies is important to prevent panic and reduce safety risks. So as a landlord, knowing what situations constitute as emergencies and the right way to handle them helps you remain calm and build trust with your renters.
It is, for this reason, we have put together the following article, contact us should you need more information!
Defining Rental Property Emergency Maintenance
There may be maintenance situations that result in an inconvenience for your tenant, but they’re not treated as emergencies. So, judgment calls are required by both the tenants and landlords to evaluate the different scenarios.
A property issue that could cause injury or harm to your renters or can lead to severe damage to the property, can be considered an emergency. Here are some listed examples of emergency concerns:
- Frozen pipes
- Broken doors and locks that can’t be secured
- Gas leaks
- No heat in winter
- No air conditioning unit on extremely hot days
- Electrical issues
- Sewer backup and flood
- Leaking roof
- Extended power outage
- Intruder break-ins
Defining Non-Emergency Maintenance
Upon reviewing the situation, if the issue will not result in harm to the tenant or your property, then this is not considered an emergency. So, if there no health or safety risks are faced, then there is no emergency.
With this in mind, here are some examples of property maintenance that can be addressed during regular working hours:
- Lack of hot water supply
- Broken ice maker
- No air conditioning (if the outside temperature is below 90 degrees)
- No heat (if the outside temperature is below 50 degrees)
- Appliances that malfunction
- Complaints on noise
- Leaks that are considered minor
- Parking disputes
- Taxation or finance-related disputes
Managing Emergency Property Maintenance
As a landlord, your tenants expect a lot from you so you should be prepared with effective emergency maintenance procedures – but it keeps them happy! These build trust and lead to a stronger relationship possibly even a renewed leasing contract.
Here are crucial factors in attending to property emergency maintenance:
Being Easily Reachable
A landlord must be within reach of renters, particularly during emergency situations. Even if your presence is unnecessary, being there to listen to the tenant’s concerns and guide them, can be a real help. You can then receive useful instructions on what a renter needs from you.
Additional Emergency Services
As a landlord, you’re expected to have access to additional emergency services, especially when faced with property emergencies that occur past regular hours. It’s advisable to have reputable vendors like locksmiths, plumbers, or electricians who are available 24/7.
Maintaining open lines of communication with your tenants is incredibly important, especially during an emergency. But also, as a way to build your relationships. Tenants who feel listened to and respected are much more likely to approach you regarding a maintenance or any other issue that could impact your property.
Understand Your Responsibilities
Landlords must be aware of what constitutes an emergency and what must be resolved immediately. They should also be able to identify scenarios that renters can solve on their own.
For repairs that can’t be identified as an emergency, complying with the usual process of notifying the renter of property access to repair property issues is required.
Answering Vital Questions
Landlords are required to be decisive in an emergency. You’re the point person where tenants can get the right information and you should be able to bring them up to speed in regard to the situation and extent of the property damage.
Knowing the critical factors also allows you to make up your mind on sheltering renters in temporary areas or finding out if the insurance can cover the emergency.
An Understanding Perspective
Sometimes, renters get emotional, especially during emergency situations. Let the renter voice out their concerns. But remain calm and provide useful information, assistance, and guidance over the proper process to perform regarding the emergency.
In the thick of an emergency scene, all communication is done verbally. This doesn’t mean neglecting your duty to document the events. You should keep notes on all the repairs and solutions provided and make plans to conduct follow-ups.
When the situation settles down, you can reach out to the renter and detail the conversation via email to have solid evidence of what transpired.
Hire A Property Manager
One of the many positive factors that can lead to the success of an investment, is partnering with a trusted property manager that can take care of a rental comprehensively. But there are many important factors to consider when searching for a prospective property manager:
- Area of expertise – Different property managers have their own specializations. One can have solid experience in managing residential and multi-family units while others focus on HOA, commercial properties, renovations, and vacation rentals. Ensure that you weigh this in before making your final decision.
- The number of support staff – a sufficient support group, can translate to a more efficient rental operation. Support staff can cover accountants, maintenance personnel, and administrative staff.
- Services available – evaluate the property management firm’s services to ensure you’re getting the most from the management fees they’re collecting.
Emergencies are difficult to handle no matter if you’re the landlord or a tenant. But it’s important to understand your obligations.
If you’re scouting for highly committed and dependable property management teams in your local area, schedule a call with Keyrenter Premier today at (480) 400 6040. You can send inquiries to [email protected] com. We have solid experience and a customer-centric approach, making us a trusted professional property management company.