Dynamic Solutions in Conflict Management and Dispute Resolution Services

How mediation can help to resolve a landlord-tenant dispute

On Behalf of | Feb 29, 2024 | Mediation

Landlords want a tenant who pays their rent on time, follows the rules and keeps their rental clean. Tenants want a reasonable landlord that responds to maintenance issues and ensures their property is livable.

Unfortunately, at some point, there may be a misunderstanding that causes a dispute between a landlord and tenant. If you are in this adverse situation, you may feel that a civil lawsuit is your only option. However, there may be better ways to resolve your conflict.

Litigation and mediation

Both mediation and litigation share the goal of dispute resolution, but they’re fundamentally different in their approach, cost, duration and impact on relationships.

Litigation is the traditional method of working through the court system to resolve a dispute. It involves at least one party (plaintiff) suing at least one other party (defendant). Litigation can be costly and time-consuming. Furthermore, the adversarial nature of litigation can harm relationships.

Conversely, mediation is a non-adversarial process where a neutral third party, known as the mediator, assists a landlord and tenant (along with their legal representatives (in reaching an agreement. The mediator facilitates communication, encourages understanding between the two parties and keeps the focus on the issue at hand.

Many times, landlord-tenant disputes arise from misunderstandings or miscommunications. With a third party neutral to guide the conversation, both parties can express their concerns and understand each other’s perspectives.

The mediator isn’t there to take sides or make judgments. Instead, they help to identify possible solutions. Furthermore, unlike litigation, where a judge or jury makes the final decision, mediation allows for a more creative problem-solving approach designed to satisfy both parties’ interests.

While mediation may not be suitable for every landlord-tenant dispute, it can be a cost-effective alternative that helps landlords and tenants resolve their conflicts more amicably for many.