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Best Ways to Communicate with Tenants: Email, Text or Call?

Best Ways to Communicate with Tenants: Email, Text or Call?
Are you a landlord seeking to streamline your communication and fortify your tenant relationships? In the digital era, the options at your disposal—email, text, or call—can be both a blessing and a complexity.  This guide is tailored to demystify these choices, ensuring your messages reach and resonate with your tenants.  As your tenants' needs evolve, so should your communication strategy. Dive into our insights on the smartest ways to connect, engage, and respond, making every interaction with your tenants an investment in your property’s value and their satisfaction.

When to Place a Phone Call to Your Tenants

Sometimes, a situation will call for the directness of a phone call. Here are the instances when picking up the phone is your best bet: Placing a phone call to your tenants is akin to adding a personal touch in an increasingly impersonal digital world. It's the method that says, "This matters." Here are the scenarios where a call is your best choice:
  • Emergencies: When immediate action is needed, nothing beats the urgency of a phone call. It's direct and can convey the critical nature of a situation, ensuring swift response and attention.
  • Building Rapport: A friendly check-in about the lease agreement or other rental issues can do wonders for your relationship with tenants. It shows care beyond the written word and can foster goodwill and trust.
Two smiling people sitting together and reviewing a document
  • Clarifying Complex Issues: When emails and texts lead to a loop of confusion, a call can provide clarity. It allows for real-time questions and answers, reducing misunderstandings and offering instant resolutions.
  • Important Announcements: If there's significant news affecting their living situation, such as major upcoming property renovations, a phone call can demonstrate consideration for the tenant's experience and provide an opportunity for immediate feedback.
To make your calls more effective, consider the following:
  • Be Concise and Prepared: Respect your tenant's time by being clear about the call's purpose and staying on topic.
  • Document the Call: After the conversation, send a brief summary via email or text. This not only provides a paper trail but also reinforces the discussion points.
  • Respect Privacy: Only call during reasonable hours—unless it's an absolute emergency—and keep the conversation professional, respecting the tenant's right to privacy.

What Is the Legal Standing of a Phone Call?

A phone call’s legal standing may vary, so always follow up any verbal agreements with written confirmation to protect your home and investment, and to ensure both parties are clear on the terms.

When to Email Your Tenants

The answer lies in balancing the need for detailed, documented exchanges with the convenience of quick, digital correspondence. Emails are the gold standard for non-urgent, formal communications where clarity and records are key. Use email to:
  • Convey Detailed Information: When you need to share lease agreements, policy changes, or detailed instructions, email provides the space and format for comprehensive communication.
Email app symbol with a red notification badge that reads
  • Document Interactions: An email trail is essential for keeping a record of all interactions, providing a timestamped audit trail that can be invaluable in resolving disputes.
  • Send Scheduled Notices: From rent reminders to routine inspection dates, emails can be automated, ensuring timely and consistent communication.
  • Attach Necessary Documents: Email allows you to attach photos, PDFs, and other documents, providing visual aids or detailed information that supports your message.
When emailing tenants, professionalism should be your guide:
  • Be Clear and Concise: Ensure every email has a purpose and is easily understood.
  • Avoid Spam: Only send emails that are necessary and relevant to your tenants.
  • Include Contact Information: Make it easy for tenants to reach you if they have questions.

Are Emails Legally Binding?

Emails can serve as legal documentation in most instances. However, some legal notices may require more formal delivery methods. It’s important to regularly verify local laws and regulations.

Why Text Messaging Can Be Effective

Text messages are generally efficient and widely read, making them ideal for:
  • Instantaneous Reach: Whether it’s a reminder for rent due dates or a notice about upcoming maintenance, texts are almost instantly seen and acknowledged by tenants, making it a powerful tool for urgent communications.
  • Accessibility for All: Unlike emails, which require internet access, text messages are less dependent on technology and can be received by tenants on even the most basic mobile phones.
Pair of hands holding a smart phone
  • Engagement and Response: Texting invites a quicker response than emails and is less time-consuming than phone calls. This immediacy can facilitate swift action from tenants, whether it’s confirming a property viewing or reporting a maintenance issue.
  • Convenience and Preference: Many tenants prefer texting over other forms of communication for its convenience and non-intrusive nature, aligning with their lifestyles and peace.
To text responsibly and effectively:
  • Obtain Permission: Ensure your tenants have agreed to receive text messages.
  • Be Purposeful: Communicate the types of messages tenants can expect via text.
  • Set Boundaries: Define what tenants can text about, directing them to proper channels for official matters.

Are Texts Considered Legal Documentation?

Text messages can be recognized as electronic communication, but a hard copy of essential notices is often required for legal protection. Use texts for reminders or as follow-ups to more formal communications.


Navigating the channels of communication with your tenant is key to a harmonious landlord-tenant relationship. Whether through the immediacy of texts, the detail of emails, or the personal touch of calls, each method has its place.  Finding the right balance can be a juggling act, but it doesn't have to be. If you're looking to enhance your communication strategy without the hassle, consider Rent Appeal Our property management experts are adept at crafting messages that convey necessary information and build rapport, ensuring your tenants feel heard and valued. Partner with Rent Appeal and elevate your rental experience with ease!