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You’ve just found out that renters at an apartment complex you own have just formed a tenants’ association. Don’t despair! You can stave off trouble and take charge of the situation if you can keep your cool and do these three things:

1. Dig for information
Talk to your tenants and try to find out what motivated them to form an association. Usually, renters won’t do this unless something significant – or an escalating pattern of smaller problems – has caused them to want to take action.

2. Make improvements
Defuse the situation that drove your tenants to band together by taking swift action to redress the problem(s). Then come up with a plan that shows you are a responsive landlord going forward. This will require that you take a careful look at your property and business practices and especially how you’ve been communicating – or not – to your tenants.

3. Go to association meetings
Offer to attend association meetings or send an employee on your behalf. Doing so will:

  • keep you abreast of what’s going on;
  • relieve some of the anxiety you may feel about the association’s existence; and
  • show tenants that you care about your property and want them to be happy living there.

Know that association members are under no obligation to let you attend their meetings. If they are not willing to let you attend, let them know that you would at least like to meet with association leaders to discuss any issues the group may have.

You should also be aware that retaliation is a bad idea. It will damage your reputation, both as a landlord and a businessperson. Be fair in your dealings and treat a tenant association just like any other group at your property, so long as members abide by your rules.

If you still feel like you’re up against a wall, then it’s time to call the experienced property management professionals at Herman Boswell. We can help you not only deal with crisis but come out ahead. Contact us today and let us show you a better way to manage your properties!