The majority of my customers are new investors. The most successful ones want to know everything about not only how to buy an investment property, but how to own one and be a successful landlord. A frequent question that I get asked is: “How often do you get after hour service calls at night”.
This must be one of those stereotypical images non-landlords have of owning investment properties. Truthfully, owning and managing all the rental units I have over the years, I get 2-3 after hours service calls after 8:00 pm per year. They are probably evenly divided between a heat out call and some neighbor calling about a bad tenant doing something they shouldn’t be. The heat out calls I obviously take seriously and deal with immediately. Occasionally I am frustrated by those calls as the heat had not been working all day, but the tenant waited until after hours to contact me.
When I get the irate neighbor call, I handle it in several ways depending upon the neighbors posture and request. If it is something simple, like a stereo playing after hours and the neighbor is reasonable and courteous, I will commit to calling the tenant to talk to them. I do, however remind the neighbor to call the police so we can get a police call on record against the tenant for possible future eviction. If the neighbor is irate and has good reason to be, but is being respectful, I may drive down to the property and see what is going on. I will recommend for them to call the police immediately, though.
Only a couple of times have I got an irate neighbor that is insulting or demeaning on the phone. Then I simply remind them that I am not the tenants parents and they should take it up directly with the tenants or the police (end of call!). Taking calls after hours will also vary depending upon what type of properties you own. If you have single family houses in nice areas, I would expect you would never get a call unless the property burned down! In rougher areas, you will probably take more calls.