Apartment next door running my tenants off

7 Replies

I  bought a duplex last year in a lower income neighborhood. Good tenants but one told me he's planning on leaving due to the small apartment (12 unit) getting bad next door. My duplex shares a driveway with the apartment so they're pretty close. The neighbors' friends are sleeping in their cars in the parking lot, people are coming and going during the night, noisy during the night, using the water hoses to bathe. He also suspects drugs are being used but hasn't seen it directly, only heard them talk of it. He won't call the police himself because he's afraid they'll mention his name.

How would you recommend me handle this? I do have the landlords contact info and I know he has 80+ properties. I do plan on contact him to see if he will resolve but he's blown me off before about something. What's the best way to get police involved?

Call the owner and see if he wants to sell.

PJ,

Depending on your location, the police probably already know of the area and what is going on, and they may be too busy to help--especially since the problem property isn't yours.

How is the neighborhood doing? Are there other investors in the area? Ask them what they think about this property/owner, and how best to get through to him. Ask him if he wants to purchase your property before he runs its value into the ground. 

Talk with others at your local REIA location to see what they think. Probably your best start since they know the area.

Best to you!

TM

Hello PJ,

I would get in touch with the owner or property manager to discuss it.  Maybe they are looking to sell, maybe they know about the issues and need a nudge or some suggestions, at the very least they could start cracking down on lease violations and tighten up their screening criteria.  

The police likely already know, but it can't hurt to talk to them and see what you might do to help out.  Maybe installing some lighting in your portion of the parking area?  See if your tenants have any suggestions as well, even asking would let them know you are trying to be proactive.

Kelly

You've already gotten some great suggestions, only thing i would add is check to see if the other landlord is willing to split having some kind of 24 hour security guard service. That would definitely help you rent the place..

Is there any way to separate the driveway and screen off the apartments? You'd be amazed at what some Leland Cypress or similar can do to make ugly stuff disappear. If the other owner is local, chances are he knows the place is a dump and doesn't care. For you, it probably behooved you to better check out the neighboring properties before buying. 

Thanks for all the suggestions folks. The properties are too close to put a fence or trees in between; although that would be great otherwise. Also, there really aren't a lot of investment properties in the area that I know of. 

So, I have the city fixing the street light and replacing the parking lot light; I never realized  both were out. I think lighting up the place will help. I did call the landlord and he blew it off mostly but said he'd keep an eye out. I also plan on talking with the police once the lights are fixed just so they're aware, although I don't think they'll proactively investigate. So I told my tenant to text me if anything is going on and I'll get the police involved (he won'ton his own). If these don't clear things up I'll install a camera on my side of the property. 

Originally posted by @PJ Muilenburg :I did call the landlord and he blew it off mostly but said he'd keep an eye out.

 If the other owner doesn't care about his property, see what you can do with the city to force him into compliance. Learn your city ordinances and look for every ordinance violation and report it. Everything - from grass height to peeling paint. Sleeping in cars in a parking lot is likely against an ordinance. Also a lot of cities have ordinances governing non-resident parking on streets overnight; and during the summer, using hoses certain days. 

Point cameras in the neighbor's direction, as much as permissible by law, and make sure you have signs outside so those who are there to make trouble know they are being watched. Allow the local police to patch into the cameras if your city has a program for such, and post that fact very visibly outside your building. 

You should make this as uncomfortable as possible for those who are potentially causing you to loose money and the other owner who refuses to cooperate. Its not like you are asking him to renovate his building to class A standards...

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