Tenants as customers
The landlord tenant relationship is often met with the never-ending challenge of balancing the tenant’s needs with the landlord’s with the goal of limiting or eliminating all together prospects of litigation. The general rules of contract often apply to such relationships such that each of them is responsible for their contractual obligations. For instance, at the very least, the tenant ought to pay rent on time and keep the premises in good state. The property manager, on the other hand, is obligated to ensure that the property is well maintained. To ensure this, reasonable expectations have to be set out for both parties, but this will depend upon whether the landlord treats the tenant as a customer or as just a tenant.
Strengths of the tenant as customer strategy
How the dynamics of this relationship play out is again largely dependent upon whether or not the tenant is treated as a customer. According to Fisher, tenants are customers. This is because they are the recipients of a product, good, service or idea form a seller or vendor of such. They should therefore be treated well, just like in any business since they help spread an investor’s reputation among friends, families and other contacts. Fisher goes on to assert that maintaining a good rapport with tenants by frequently communicating to make sure everything is fine in their personal lives and in the property is key the quest for reaping rewards such as good will, less hassle and more word of mouth advertising. (Fisher, 2007)
Another author, Lawfer affirms that treating tenants as customers ensures their satisfaction with the facilities or services offered, thus safeguarding loyalty. His rationale was that the more or longer a customer used your goods or services, the more likely they would use it again. (Lawfer, 2003). This position by these two authors reinforces the position that when you treat your tenants as customers, you focus more on their needs and less on yours as the...