Property Managers Should Prepare for Potential Lawsuits

Unhappy tenants will often seek legal action against a property manager they feel has wronged them. Even if the manager has done nothing wrong, legal fees can add up quickly. The savvy manager is aware of potential pitfalls and is proactive in addressing them.

Implement Procedures for the Move-In Process

To reduce the risk of property manager lawsuits there are some steps you should consider.

  1. First and foremost, make sure you accept tenants who have a good track record of paying their bills.
  2. Before the new tenant moves in, take pictures of all the structures, flooring and ceiling. Log all inspection details into a database or other file.
  3. Make sure the tenant sees the condition of the property and understands that you have accurate records. Have them sign a statement to that effect.

Develop Policies for Vacating the Property

Keeping good records will reduce the likelihood that a tenant will attempt to sue you for damages. It will also discourage them from trying to get their security deposit back when they move out.

Keep a file of all communications and complaints from the tenant, including a complete resolution of past issues and the staff who handled the situation. If a tenant files a lawsuit, speak with possible witnesses and obtain their sworn affidavits.

With organized planning, you can significantly reduce the risk of tenant lawsuits.