Dana Dunford – Coronavirus Related Tenant Issues and Recommendations

Dana Dunford’s Background

Dana is CEO of Hemlane Property Management platform and is an advocate of investing in out of market real estate while connecting investors with local “boots on the ground” real estate professionals. Dana was named one of the Top 20 female leaders and influencers of commercial real estate tech and earned her MBA from Harvard Business School.

In her free time, Dana is an avid equestrian, paraglider, and skier. She is the first woman to win a calf dressing championship belt buckle at the CA Rodeo. She takes risks in her personal life but spends her work life advocating technology and prudent spending for a risk-mitigated solution to real estate management.

How are Eviction Rules Changing with the Covid 19 virus?

Depending on your location, States and Counties have set precedent regarding any closure of Courts or delays in evictions to assist with the impact of Covid19 on day to day life. Dana recommends the following when it comes to handling a tenant unable to make rental payment as influenced by Covid19 :

  1. Did tenant lose their job or suffer a decrease in pay?
  2. Does the tenant have a loss of childcare due to Covid19?
  3. Has the tenant been impacted regarding healthcare expenses due to Covid19?
  4. Has the tenant suffered significant hardship due to government issued emergency measures?

If your tenant has not suffered the ability the ability to pay rent on a timely basis for one of these four reasons, we recommend eviction proceedings be filed as they normally would.  However, maintain records of communication with your tenant as well as their payment ledger.  You will need these for a court filing.

Should Landlords or Property Managers be Reaching Out to their Tenant Regarding Partial Payment or Late Payment of Rent due to Covid 19?

Yes, OVERCOMMUNICATION IS STRONGLY RECOMMENDED.

However, be general in your communication and handle each tenant partial or late payment request on a case by case basis. Request proof of hardship when necessary, but, do not promise partial payment in your initial attempts to see how the Covid19 virus hardship is effecting the tenant and their ability to make a timely rental payment.

Should Late Fees be Charged During the Covid19 pandemic?

No, Dana does not recommend landlords or property managers charge late fees at this time. Sean recommends we be understanding of the current scenario, be a good listener, and show your ability to shine as a landlord during a time which was out of anyone’s initial control.

How should Repair Calls be Handled During “Shelter in Place” Orders?

Dana recommends that only emergency repair requests be handled at this time. Anything non-emergency should be handled as State and Local Officials communicate that it is safe to do so.

How should Vendors and Tenants conduct themselves at the time or Repair Appointment?

Dana recommends all necessary safety measures be taken. Both parties should wash hands, maintain a 6′ distance at all time, and where masks, gloves, or goggles. Tenant may even go as far as just staying in a secure room for the purposes of not spreading or inhaling unwanted germs.

Finally, either vendor or tenant should cancel the repair appointment should they feel sick.

How should Landlords or Property Managers handle Showing of Rental Property (that is occupied) during Covid19 pandemic?

Dana recommends all showings cease for the purpose of keeping the tenant safe as well as any visitors.  If showings due occur on vacant properties, make sure sanitizer or handwashing stations are available and promoted to use.

Sean recommends that a video be taken of any property available for rent and that be embedded into a webpage for interested parties to visit. Then, applications can be received for qualification purposes.

More Information on Dana Dunford’s Blog Post / Website :

To preview Dana’s blog post on Covid19 and Landlord/Tenant Relations CLICK HERE .

CLICK HERE to checkout the Hemlane Property Management Platform.