What Happens When A Member Of Your Staff Says Too Much?

The New York Times gets wind of it and plasters?the mistake across the globe.

According to the article, a young couple was not offered a new lease when their current lease ran out. This was a decision made by a upper-level manager who determined that the money brought in by leasing an apartment to the couple was not worth the trouble caused by that couple. The couple had a history of being difficult tenants and the building manager decided it was better to worry about leasing an empty apartment than to deal with the couple spreading their discontent.

There was no legal issue as a landlord is not required to offer a new lease to any tenant nor required to disclose why the lease is not being offered.

But the staff couldn’t keep quiet and the employee who had direct contact with the male tenant, David Griffiths, referenced remarks made on a tenant discussion board and told him “Dave, we understand that you’re not happy living here, so we made the decision for you”. With just a few words, a simple process was transformed into a media-chased discussion that promoted a stereotype of the landlord as being a cruel and unfeeling entity.

Whether your rental property is letting a room to your brother or leasing millions of square feet, it is important that you define how you will deal with specific problems before they happen. That way, when a tenant is being evicted, a sewer pipe breaks, or somebody discovers a cockroach in their living room, you and your staff will already know what to say.