Tenants these days are absolutely reliant on the internet, and downtime can easily ruin their day. Many tenants now work from home or have businesses on the side that they depend on their home broadband for and even without work, we’ve all had that moment where we’re booking an important flight or trying to submit that last document and the browser simply crashes. Unfortunately as the landlord, it’s you who’s going to get the call! How should you deal with internet problems?
Try the Usuals
Most internet problems are not actually caused by the internet connection itself but by the computer that’s trying to connect. Don’t do anything until your tenants have turned off their machines, rebooted the modem and Googled the problem: normally one of these will solve the issue and will work again and again.
Contact the Provider Immediately
If however, the previous methods don’t solve the problem, you may have to get on the phone as soon as possible, particularly if you’re providing broadband for your tenants as a part of a package. Always record your call charges and take them as expenses from your property and, if they become excessive, you can always attempt to reclaim them from the provider. Most won’t give you any details of the problem but they can let you know if it’s a general issue or specific to your property.
Broadband providers are usually extremely co-operative when it comes to seeking compensation for loss and you should try this before speaking to your landlord insurance provider. In theory, it is best if your tenants make the calls themselves, but if you’re providing broadband as part of a contract you may well end up doing it. Often written communication is actually more effective than phoning so scour around online for a complaints address if you believe you’ve been ripped off.
Though most of us are able to cope without a connection for a day or two, internet downtime is a massive problem for a lot of tenants and you could find them camping out in coffee shops if there’s no broadband at home! Do your best to get the problem sorted as soon as you can, but make sure your tenants know their responsibilities too, and don’t start calling before they’ve tried all the options.