On Friday, I posted an article about unemployment among tenants, and how to preemptively address the huge difficulty that brings for landlords.
And as always, the best thing about this blog was not the article I posted, but the comments you left. There was a vigorous discussion among a number of experienced landlords versus a couple of people who felt that faltering tenants should be addressed with a softer touch.
This is similar to another issue faced in real estate investing: how to deal with people going through foreclosure. Some people feel that the best help that can be given to a foreclosure victim is to buy their house – even at a steep discount – and prevent the foreclosure from happening, whereas others feel that, at the very least, a pre-foreclosure victim should be allowed to rent back their property after selling it, and maybe should even be given a “fair market” price for their foreclosure property.
Generally speaking, people who espouse less strenuous treatment of noncompliant tenants or foreclosure victims cite “compassion” or “fairness” as justification for their opinions. For example:
- Everyone is having a hard time right now – why don’t landlords just show a little compassion?
- The tenant lost their job and can’t pay, so is it fair that they should be evicted?
- Foreclosure is bad enough, and you shouldn’t take advantage of their bad situation.
This is where I’d like to open it up to you, my thousands of esteemed readers. What do you think? What role do “compassion” and “fairness” have in our business? And more importantly, what do these words actually mean?
What do you think? As always, thank you for your thoughts, and for reading RealEstate.BryanEllis.com.