Why live at the property you manage?
I’m a big advocate for living on the property you manage. The biggest reason being all the maintenance issues I have found and prevented and the inconveniences caused by other tenants that were quickly dealt with. You might be surprised by what your tenants don’t tell you while you’re away or what they don’t notice. A few recent examples:
Sitting in the lounge chair watching TV and suddenly there’s a rumble. The china in the large wooden cabinet starts shaking. So I walk up to the second floor thinking it must be the music is extremely loud. Standing next to the second-floor apartment door, I realized, no that’s definitely not it. I felt the loud rumbling coming from upstairs. Next to the third-floor door, it was clear. They were running. Does no-running include no-treadmills as well? Couldn’t imagine what the second floor was thinking. My guess is they would simply keep turning up their music louder and hope the people above them get the point. You’re disturbing everyone. I knocked on their door told them about the treadmill so they stopped for the rest of the day. However, in the following days, they kept running. While the problem was solved immediately, it was addressed immediately. Happy to say those tenants are not with us anymore.
Discovered mold in the basement while looking for tools to help with the backyard. It was in the cellar closet hidden by tools and covering the entire lower half of one wall. After getting some advice from a friend, I was able to take care of the situation ASAP. Happy I seen it when I did and was able to avoid replacing the wall.
More recently noticed an increase in the moth population in my kitchen over the last few months. Never experienced this in all the years I lived there. I tried getting rid of them by hand but would find a group of them again by morning. When I spoke to the tenants, my neighbors about the situation they admitted to having some troubles too. They didn’t want to mention it to avoid any stigma it might be attached too. The neighbors across the street were there and mentioned different pest problems they’ve had, one involving a nest of wasps near their home, another with fruit flies lasting through winter. The next day I went to the Home Depot and grabbed a few different products to get rid of these pests and distributed them to all the tenants. I think this did 2 things: 1. It let them know I was equally concerned about the situation and 2. It created a stronger unified effort to really exterminate these pests. Good riddance!
While you can’t live on every property you might own it’s important to inspect your property and check in with tenants periodically in addition phone calls triggered by neighborhood events. You might even want to create a checklist of places to inspect and things to ask tenants. While I say nothing beats living on the property, genuine concern for the well being of your tenants and a little effort is all you should need to keep them happy with the service you provide.