Getting into a dispute with a tenant is one of the things that many landlords want to avoid at all costs. However, these issues are not always avoidable.
It is more important to know what to do in these situations, rather than putting all of your effort and time into figuring out how to avoid them completely. So what are the best ways to handle disputes with tenants?
Have a strong rapport
Forbes discusses some ways to build better relationships with tenants and renters. This is one of the best ways to handle a dispute with a tenant. If you already have a good rapport with a tenant, the disputes likely will not escalate very far and you can often solve the issues by simply talking things through.
Alternative dispute resolution
If you do not have that rapport, it is likely going to be harder for you to work something out, but it is not impossible. This is where options like arbitration and mediation come in handy. These allow you to avoid taking a dispute to court, offering varying levels of structure and tools in order to handle the matter more or less on your own instead.
In arbitration, an arbitrator will determine the outcome of the case after listening to both sides present their arguments and evidence. Mediators do not have this power and, instead offer valuable advice and opinions, along with de-escalation of arguments.
Litigation is a potential option too, though it should potentially remain a final resort as it costs time and money and permanently damages the relationship between you and your tenant.