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How to Limit Conflicts and Disputes

nosy

 

Tammy McNaught • BanCal Property Management • Feb 8, 2022

 

Multi-family rental properties come with a unique set of challenges for landlords. Keeping up with maintenance and on-time rent collection is something that every property owner knows to anticipate. Noisy neighbors and nuisance complaints, however, are usually unique to apartments.

If you’re like most owners, you expect your tenants to be good neighbors. What happens when there’s a noise complaint? 

Your first approach might be to remain hands-off, expecting tenants to resolve neighborly disputes among themselves. That’s fine, but what if the situation deteriorates and you find yourself dealing with threats, harassment, and escalating problems? Best to get out in front of this conflict, even if it doesn’t involve you directly.  

DON’T LET THE SITUATION ESCALATE

Effective communication and professionalism are essential.

 

  1. CREATE AND ENFORCE A STRONG LEASE AGREEMENT 

Any time there’s a problem that has no solutions or several different solutions, you need to consult your lease agreement. That’s the first resource for any complaints or disputes between your tenants or between you and a tenant. Make sure you have a strong lease agreement in place that is clear about rules, responsibilities, and rights. 

Most leases will have something that addresses a tenant’s right to quiet enjoyment of the property. In a multi-family lease agreement, it’s typical to have quiet hours listed. For example, during the hours of 10pm and 6am, music and television must be kept turned down to ensure other residents aren’t bothered. The lease is also a good place to provide tenants with a process for making complaints about noise from neighbors.

 

  1. ENCOURAGE COMMUNICATION AND COOPERATION

Communication is always important, and a neighborly conversation can sometimes take care of the problem quickly. If your tenants are comfortable talking to their neighbors, encourage them to do so. Opening a discussion on noise and respecting each other’s quiet times is also something that you can facilitate as the landlord. 

Loud noises can be especially disruptive at night, so if tenants are kept awake by barking dogs, loud music, or constant parties, a simple conversation between neighbors may make things better. Encourage your resident not to be accusatory or angry, but to approach it in a way that’s respectful and open.  

It’s possible that the neighbors don’t realize how easy it is for your tenants to hear them. If they’re reasonable and respectful, a simple chat may be all that’s required, and things will quiet down right away. Don’t let your tenants escalate the situation if their neighbors are rude and angry, however. 

 

  1. TAKING THE NEXT STEPS WHEN NOISE COMPLAINTS AREN’T RESOLVED

If the offending tenant is in a property that you manage, you can send a letter to document the complaint that’s been made. Ask the tenant to resolve the issue by not playing their music as loud or by turning down their television in the evenings. 

You want to remain friendly and cooperative, but if the tenant does not respond or remedy the situation, you can move forward with an eviction. Noise complaints usually don’t go that far, but it is an option that you have. 

 

Tenant Screening Helps

When you’re screening prospective tenants, make sure you’re not welcoming disruptive and noisy residents into your community. Look for prior evictions and talk to former landlords about how they behaved in the past.

Bottom Line: Be proactive before conflicts escalate. Encouraging friendly communication between residents can increase understanding on both sides. If noise continues, written notice to a disruptive resident to document the complaint can be effective, however if the resident doesn’t comply, your strong and comprehensive lease can support moving forward with eviction. 

We welcome your comments and questions. 

 

 

 

 
This comment was minimized by the moderator on the site

Do u expect section8 on units

  LaRisha Rena Hill
This comment was minimized by the moderator on the site

LaRisha, I do not understand your question. Thank you for reading my blog.

  BanCal Property Management
This comment was minimized by the moderator on the site

I am guessing this site is not for tenants to post, was unsure, and does not appear to have regular activity.

Anyway, I read what was stated here to help with disruptive neighbors, but what if management does not follow these guidelines? I have found this to be a very difficult situation, living with a terrible neighbor affecting my daily life, the manager’s mild requests being ignored by tenant. The management co. supervisor leaving up to manager to witness, yet the manager is asleep after hours when the tenant returns on his late-day schedule, when racket regularly occurs, though also daytime on his days off.

I will steadily experience low-frequency, rumbling, thundering amplified sounds or stereo Bass upon my ceiling, besides stomping and slamming of windows any time of day or night. After police visited once after 1:00 a.m. regarding volume, the tenant threw a fit afterwards for 40 minutes, hitting walls, slamming, stomping. This being loud enough, I was able to record on a device and had it suggested to send my video clips to the management co., apparently being overlooked by supervisor, wanting manager to “catch him” in the act. Again, this goes in circles, never properly addressed and resolved. There are no warnings or consequences for him, yet having seen that these instances may be addressed elsewhere. Of course I would move if only possible, being limited by certain requirements and an apparent housing shortage of.

If the tenant has been spoken to, it doesn’t make a difference. He has been disrespectful of the manager, having hung up on her or speaking back to her. She also feels “the way to hear noise” is from outdoors in courtyard, which doesn’t apply in an instance like this, needing to witness the sounds upon my ceiling. Also, seeming to think that disruption during the day is not a problem. It appears the area between “regular living noise” and “nuisance noise” is overlooked, being unnecessary, excessive, forceful actions on a...

I am guessing this site is not for tenants to post, was unsure, and does not appear to have regular activity.

Anyway, I read what was stated here to help with disruptive neighbors, but what if management does not follow these guidelines? I have found this to be a very difficult situation, living with a terrible neighbor affecting my daily life, the manager’s mild requests being ignored by tenant. The management co. supervisor leaving up to manager to witness, yet the manager is asleep after hours when the tenant returns on his late-day schedule, when racket regularly occurs, though also daytime on his days off.

I will steadily experience low-frequency, rumbling, thundering amplified sounds or stereo Bass upon my ceiling, besides stomping and slamming of windows any time of day or night. After police visited once after 1:00 a.m. regarding volume, the tenant threw a fit afterwards for 40 minutes, hitting walls, slamming, stomping. This being loud enough, I was able to record on a device and had it suggested to send my video clips to the management co., apparently being overlooked by supervisor, wanting manager to “catch him” in the act. Again, this goes in circles, never properly addressed and resolved. There are no warnings or consequences for him, yet having seen that these instances may be addressed elsewhere. Of course I would move if only possible, being limited by certain requirements and an apparent housing shortage of.

If the tenant has been spoken to, it doesn’t make a difference. He has been disrespectful of the manager, having hung up on her or speaking back to her. She also feels “the way to hear noise” is from outdoors in courtyard, which doesn’t apply in an instance like this, needing to witness the sounds upon my ceiling. Also, seeming to think that disruption during the day is not a problem. It appears the area between “regular living noise” and “nuisance noise” is overlooked, being unnecessary, excessive, forceful actions on a daily basis, besides amplified sound. (I would post a recording of his rant here, but does not appear possible to do from my device).

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  L
This comment was minimized by the moderator on the site

It appears I can post video clips after all - being just one sample, from that incident:

  L

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