Tenants demand a professional plumber after DIY JOB

6 Replies

Recently, one of my mobile homes has had several plumbing issues. 1st pipe burst underneath. I fixed it quick with a Sharkbite T. Then a line on the water heater that goes to the PEX also busted. I sent my dad over there and he just replaced the pipe and g2g. This weekend i get a call that the pipe had busted again ! I go there the next day and replace and fix it. Nothing to it, just have to have the tools and anyone can do it. The tenant tells me i need to get a plumber to fix it right. I told him the plumber would do the same thing i did.
He tells me that i need to hire a plumber and this and that.Because if his stuff messes up with a water leak, (Tv/PS4) ima pay for it etc. That got me angry as hell.  I told him i was not liable for any of his things in the house if damage occurred. My lease has an indemnification clause.Told him i wasnt liable at all for any of the things inside. I told him he needed to get Renters Insurance if he was going that route. I told him i do my own repairs and at my own discretion, decide if i need to hire anyone. I could tell he was upset, but he just said ok.He added that i was being "negligent" I told him negligent would be if i didn't fix it. I ended up calling my plumber(Professional Plumber) who had just done a complete re-piping for me on a Foreclosure i bought. After going over some details with him, i mentioned i had turned up the water heater to maximum level because they had complained that the water wasn't hot long enough. He instructed me to turn that to the middle. It's Summer now basically and Water heater doesn't need to work as hard. To call him if it happens again after i turn the knobs. The renter fussed again about water not being hot enough which is why i had turned it up in the first place. Told him that's just the way it is.

This is actually my fam bam. My cousin and her husband i rent to. I helped them out by not charging them a deposit and gave them a better deal on the monthly rent. They are on a MTM lease. So neither I or them are obligated to stay. They have been paying me on time every month which is good though.

Any advice on this ? I cant let tenants dictate how i run my business.

I think you just might be negligent if you have "repaired" it 3 times and it's still not working. It's inconvenient to the tenant at the very least. A tenant also should not have to make an insurance claim because of landlord negligence.

I 100% agree with Ray. If you have had to come out to the home multiple times for several plumbing issues, you need to hire a professional to look over the system and fix the issue. Regardless of what type of deal you've given them. They respect your lease and pay you on time. What if the roles were reversed? Would you find the landlord coming out multiple times to put a bandaid on the issue ok? 

@Maugno M. I agree with everyone else. I would get a pro in. It will make your tenant happy (or less pissed), it will give you a fall guy if things don't go perfect and it frees up your time to go find more deals and make more money.

I quit doing anything to my units unless they are empty and I just feel like going over and painting or whatever.

I am at the point I just want to manage and collect checks. If can't buy places cheap enough to cash flow well enough to pay someone else to work on your rentals then your paying too much for your places.

That being said when I only had a few rentals I did try and save some money as much as possible until I grew my business.

Good luck!

Its odd that pipes are bursting.  Would they by chance be polybutylene?  If so I would budget to have the whole house re-plumbed asap. Once that stuff starts breaking it will continue to be a constant headache.  It was recalled and taken off the market for a reason. CPVC and PEX should not have any issues.

As for the water heater.  Is it electric?  are both elements working?  often one element stops working causing the hot water to not last long enough, its a easy fix as long as the element is not seized in the tank. Cranking the temp up to compensate is a short term fix that can lead to other issues

@Scott Rogers No its cpvc and pex. So it has good plumbing. The water heater is brand new and electric.

Thank you all for the replies. I have an appointment with a plumber to go inspect it Tomorrow.

I was going to suggest the same thing as @Scott Rogers . Some of those trailers have pipes that were improperly manufactured and the will keep busting. I'm surprised you have upgraded pipes and still have these problems. I would also check the water heater because a brand new appliance shouldn't be having these problems even at a lower setting.

You may need to ask your family members to move out to save the relationship (and your sanity).