Like most Jenks renters, you know that when you have a good relationship with your landlord, life gets a lot easier. But would you want to be friends with your landlord? There are important considerations to remember if you are contemplating renting from a friend or building a friendship with your present landlord. Landlord-tenant friendships can work, but it does take effort. It is a good idea to proceed cautiously and to follow these simple guidelines to ensure that your rental relationship does not ruin your personal one.
The days of doing business with a handshake are long gone. If you are going to rent your friend’s property, make sure you are given a lease detailing all your rights and responsibilities. Should there be items that are not on the lease, document everything. The purpose of this documentation of your landlord’s expectations is to protect you in case circumstances change and to hold both you and your landlord accountable.
Separate Business and Pleasure
Friendships have different levels of closeness, and depending on how close you become to your landlord, you will want to set boundaries between your landlord-tenant interactions and your social time together. Keep rental home-related issues away from social settings, and bear in mind that being friends with the landlord does not mean all your requests will be granted. Don’t expect any special treatment because it will only lead to problems between you and your landlord and between your roommates. Remember that although you are friends, being a landlord is our friend’s business so you should maintain professionalism.
As you keep business and personal relationships separate, you also have to set good boundaries with your landlord in different scenarios as well. Your landlord might think it is okay to invite themselves into your home or to your possessions as a close friend would. However, doing so can usually cross the line between being a landlord and taking advantage of a friend. Once your landlord crosses one boundary, he is likely to overstep in other ways. To ensure that it does not happen, always nip unwelcome behaviors like this in the bud. Healthy boundaries will help keep a positive relationship with your landlord.
This friendship with your landlord may help you become more comfortable in your regular interactions. But there will be times that these conversations will become awkward, like if you begin discussing other tenants or even aspects of the landlord’s business that have nothing to do with your rental situation. If your landlord likes hanging around the property, you could also feel pressured to engage in regular conversations with him and invite him to your social events. You should watch out if your landlord starts voicing hurt feelings for being excluded in the social activity in your rental home. Although it would be awkward, it is vital that your landlord is aware that your friend does not mean you are obligated to always include them. In the same way, do not expect your landlord to invite you to all their social gatherings as well. Neither of you will benefit from blurring the lines of your relationship.
Becoming friends with your landlord or renting from a friend can be full of challenges and possible pitfalls. If you want to avoid ruining a good friendship, it would be best to keep everything polite but professional with your landlord.
We are pledged to the letter and spirit of U.S. policy for the achievement of equal housing opportunity throughout the Nation. See Equal Housing Opportunity Statement for more information.