Owner – Renter Tension


Many homeowners believe renters make bad neighbors, allowing their properties to fall into disrepair during brief stays in homes that belong to investors who only care about the rent.


True or false?


John Adams did a piece for AJC on this topic:


Q: Renters are tired of being treated like second class citizens, while some owners claim their neighborhoods are being ruined by renters. Who is right and who is wrong?


A: It’s not quite that easy. This is a struggle that’s been going on for a million years, starting with the first cave man who rented his cave to another family in the off-season. The neighbors in the adjoining cave didn’t like it and made their opinions known to the owner when he returned. People who put down roots and invest heavily in a certain location have always resented those who were able to achieve much the same benefits for almost none of the financial or life commitment. And I don’t expect that to change any time soon. Each side has a valid argument.


Q: What is the position of the unhappy owner-occupant with neighbors who are renters?


A: OK, the owners next door have sunk their life savings into the house and the community, they pay property taxes, and they live and die financially by the success or failure of the community. From their perspective, they are fully committed, both financially and socially, to the neighborhood, the schools, and the local community.


From their perspective, the renters are temporary occupants who benefit from the blood, sweat and tears of the neighborhood, and often contribute nothing back but a poorly maintained house and an ugly yard with overgrown bushes and a weedy lawn.


What are your experiences?


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