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

As a landlord, knowing which communication method is best between you and your tenant is important. Each tenant may prefer a unique form of communication, ranging from texts and emails to phone calls.

Each method of communication serves a unique purpose. In today’s blog, you’ll learn proven tips on the best ways to communicate with tenants. You’ll also know which communication methods to use in different scenarios.

Phone Calls

There will come a time when you’ll need to talk with your tenant directly. Common situations include the following:

  • When there’s a disaster at the rental premises: Your tenant may face an emergency maintenance issue. Examples include flooding, broken water lines, and a leaking roof. As a landlord, you should ensure that the tenant can get in touch with you in as many ways as possible.
  • When seeking clarification: In this case, calling your tenant can be more effective than texting or emailing. Phone calls help confirm details and provide clarity, which emails and texts may lack.

How Do You Ensure Tenants Feel Comfortable With Phone Calls?

Phone etiquette and patience are key for a phone call to go smoothly. The following are some tips to help ensure your tenant is comfortable receiving calls from you:

  • Always be professional: Begin the call by mentioning who you are and why you’re calling. Being too chatty or overly friendly may be interpreted by different tenants differently. While some may see it as a normal, everyday conversation, others may not feel comfortable.


  • When leaving a voicemail, ensure that it’s detailed, yet brief. Rather than just requesting the tenant to call you back, let them know the reason why you were calling. Just as with phone calls, make sure you keep the voicemail professional.
  • Be personable: In addition to being professional, also remember to be personable. Call the tenant by their first name. Be cheerful and empathetic!
  • Only call during normal business hours: Unless it’s an emergency situation, make sure to abide by the FCC rules when calling a tenant. In addition to that, only call for legitimate reasons.


Just like a phone call, sending an email to a tenant can help relay important information quickly. Through emails, you may be able to:

  • Share important resources with the tenant, such as pictures, infographics, and emails.
  • Remind the tenant about important events: For example, due rent amounts, invoices, and additional charges.
  • Communicate important details with the tenant, such as new policies/addendum, maintenance projects, or upcoming inspections.
  • Serve as proof of the communication: Once you send an email, you’re able to get a record of the time and date, which may come in handy in the future when such documentation may be required.

How Do You Ensure Tenants Are Comfortable With Emails?

The following are some tips to help you get the most from emails when communicating with tenants:

  • Draft every email with a clear business purpose.
  • Include your contact information in every email you send to the tenant.


  • Double-check any documents or graphics you have attached to your emails.
  • Send emails only during normal business hours.


Text messaging is easy and convenient, making it one of the preferred methods of communication among landlords and tenants. The following are some reasons why you may want to consider texting your tenants:

  • Text messages have high open rates. Depending on who you ask, SMS open rates will hover from 90% to 99%. This makes SMS marketing one of the best advertising strategies in the market.
  • Texts are universal. Your tenant doesn’t have to have a smartphone to receive a text message. Without an internet-enabled phone, your tenant will only be able to access their emails from a computer.
  • Text messages have high response rates. In fact, people usually respond 6-8 times faster by text than by email or phone call.

That said, no two tenants are the same. Some may still prefer you communicate with them via means more convenient to them. That’s why it may be important to have a discussion with your tenants during the lease signing process about their preferred method of communication.

The following are best practices when it comes to texting with your tenants:

  • Seek their permission first.
  • Mention it in the lease. State that texts are part of the communication methods you’ll use when passing information to the tenant.
  • Let the tenant know what kind of information they should expect through text. You may want to limit text communication to things like seasonal maintenance reminders, rent due dates, and renovation updates.


  • Limit what information the tenant can send to you via text. If there’s an online portal for the tenant to submit their maintenance requests through, then make sure to let them know that they should use the portal instead.

Create a solid lease agreement that serves as a guideline on what the tenant can and can’t do in various situations. This will help avoid any possible confusion or misunderstanding in the future.


Do your due diligence when it comes to which method of communication best suits your needs. If you still have a question or need expert help in managing your rental property, Rent Easy can help!

We’re one of the best property management companies in Hampton Roads. Get in touch today to learn more!

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