$10 Phone Calls and the Resident From Hell
After a couple of decades in the apartment management and leasing biz, I conclude that leasing agents are hired to be “instant friends” with their prospects. It’s called “acquisition” marketing. Site people greet prospects, offer coffee (whatever), discover their wants/needs, and then, after the lease is signed, they continue the “instant friend” charade whenever they greet former prospects/new residents in the hallway or around the property. Reality check: When it comes time to collect the rent — the most obnoxious part of the job (except for dealing with the Resident From Hell, see below!) — the default response is eviction. It’s essentially automatic, but it’s wildly expensive and, in my opinion, unnecessary.
What I do instead is this: I call every delinquent resident when the late fee attaches, identify myself as a lawyer (which matters!), and let them know that if they fail to pay rent, with the late fee, on the 10th (or whenever), they’ll be evicted. The result is that more than 85 percent pay before the eviction would be filed. These are $10 phone calls, and they definitely avoid the expenses of eviction! If you like the idea, I can offer them the opportunity to avoid eviction by executing a Mutual Lease Termination, which is MUCH less expensive than the eviction process.
The other service I offer is dealing with the resident from hell. Below is the link to a videotape of an “interaction” between a young guy and the Resident from Hell at a senior housing property. It happened on the 4th of July, when the guy and his brother, sons of the black elderly resident living directly above the RFH, were barbecuing lunch. Check it out: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nFXhRcDGKkU
Briefly, I fixed the problem, after four days of very intense work, with the result that the RFH agreed to move out, still believing that she was in real danger.
That’s the kind of work I truly enjoy.
Let me know if this approach could work for you – by either emailing me firstname.lastname@example.org or calling me at 952.975.9040.