Thursday, May 21, 2020

What to Do When Your Tenants Lose Their Jobs

The COVID-19 pandemic has presented unique and difficult challenges for us all. As more and more companies continue laying off employees, chances are good you'll have to contend with a tenant losing their job. While it's easy to jump to a worst-case scenario state of mind, remaining calm and supportive can go a long way in meeting tenants where they are. 

Talk with your tenants about their situations. Your first concern shouldn't be about how they'll pay the rent. Instead, express genuine empathy and give tenants some space to cope with their job loss. In many cases, tenants may have new opportunities that will leave them with plenty of cash to pay rent. 

Should a tenant miss a rental payment, communications should continue. Ask about their long-term plans and hopes for the future. If the tenant has been timely with their rent payments before and you'd like to extend them some grace, see if they can manage to pay a reduced rate. Even a month or two of reduced rent payments can be enough to help some tenants get back on their feet.

While the right path forward isn't always clear, operating with empathy and understanding can help guide your decisions as a landlord.

-- Scott Safadi, Cal Bay Property Management


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