Anyone who is living in or owns a house knows that having a reliable property management company is crucial. However, some people end up with companies that perform poorly and do not provide services as promised. When this happens, it’s important to know what to do.
Throughout this guide we will talk you through all the steps of complaining about your property management company, as well as offer some of our top tips when doing so.
Why Make a Complaint About Your Property Management Company?
If you have a problem with your property manager, there are several good reasons you may want to take the time to file a formal complaint against a property management company. These could include:
- Your property management company does not maintain your properties in a clean and safe condition.
- Your managing agent has been slow to respond to requests for repairs, or they have failed to get repairs completed on time.
- You feel that you are being charged excessive fees.
- A new service is offered by the property management company which you object to.
- Your lease was ended by the property management company without good reason.
If you’re experiencing problems with your property managers and want to make a complaint, you should keep in mind the potential benefits of doing so. Firstly, complaints about property managers will help the property manager improve their service.
Complaints can also prevent problems with future rentals by reporting current property managers for unethical business conduct. You should also remember that tenants are protected under law from retaliation after filing a complaint against an unethical property manager.
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How To Make a Complaint About Your Property Management Company
1. Understand Your Property Managers Rights and Responsibilities
Before you make a complaint about your property agent, it is important to understand what they can and cannot do. Property management companies should always work to industry best practices. Though it is important to consult the specific contract you have with your property manager to find key rights and responsibilities, some general responsibilities that property management companies should uphold include:
- Marketing and leasing apartments in the property
- Screening and selecting tenants for the property
- Rent collection and accounting
- Maintenance and repairs
- Other management duties (such as enforcing the lease or resolving disputes)
2. Speak To Your Property Manager Directly
Once you understand the responsibilities of a property management company, if you feel that those responsibilities aren’t being adequately met, you should speak to your property manager directly. If you are considering filing a complaint about your property manager, it is best to give them an opportunity to resolve the issue before taking your concerns higher up or beyond the company.
If you feel comfortable approaching your property manager directly, you can discuss any issues with them and attempt to come up with a solution together. Many complaints about property managers stem from misunderstandings that could be resolved if the property manager and the tenant were to sit down and discuss them together.
3. Consider Using a Communication Tool Between Tenants and Property Managers
If you feel that speaking with your property manager directly isn’t helping or that they are not taking initiatives towards resolving your issues, consider using a communication tool between tenants and property managers. There are many different communication tools available for this purpose and they can be a great way to connect with your property manager.
Using a communication tool between tenants and property managers can ensure that issues are clearly communicated. Communications such as maintenance apps and direct lines of email, phone calls or text messages may help to avoid misunderstandings that could be resolved quickly when discussed together in person or over the phone.
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3. Escalate Your Complaint
If you have tried to communicate with your property manager directly but feel that the issue still isn’t being resolved, you may wish to escalate your complaint. When you are making a complaint about your property manager, you should consider who your options are for reporting your concerns. You should first refer to the company’s in-house complaints procedure. You may be able to find this information on their website, or alternatively you can contact the company to ask them for this.
You can also contact the Property Redress Scheme for an independent investigation into your dispute. If your landlord is part of a professional association, you can contact them regarding your complaint.
4. Complain To a Trade Association
If your issue is still unresolved or you are still unsatisfied with your property management services, you can complain to a trade association. Similar to the in-house complaints procedure of a company, some trade associations have formal procedures for handling complaints. You can find information on your particular trade association’s website or alternatively you can contact them to ask how they handle complaints.
Making a Complaint About Your Property Management Company: Top Tips
- Be very clear about your complaint. Do not assume that the manager or owner of the company will see it as a valid concern. Instead of telling them that they are bad, tell them what they did wrong and why it is an issue for you.
- Do not try to blame others or make false accusations. Focus on your practical needs and try to keep emotions under control. Keep in mind that the property manager has to deal with many clients, so try to stay calm when speaking with them about your issues.
- If you are having an issue with a property management company, it can be very beneficial to use an online communication platform that allows tenants to connect directly with their property manager. This can help to avoid any misunderstandings and will allow the property manager and tenant to clearly communicate their needs with each other.
- Use an effective complaint letter template if you have decided to write a formal letter about your issue to a local authority. Include some information about yourself, including who you are, for how long you have been living at the rental property, and your contact information. Also, include the date of the letter and list all concerns clearly with dates included where possible.
Looking For a New Block Manager?
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