The no. 1 reason renters get in touch with their landlords is also the most embarrassing one

By Lucy Cohen Blatter  | August 7, 2014 - 2:59PM

According to a recent survey of renters across the country, the most common reason renters call their landlords or building maintenance staff is also the last thing you ever want to call in the professionals for: to fix a clogged toilet.

The second most common reason to reach out? To get the keys. (We've always thought easy access to keys was top on the list of reasons why it's great to have a doorman, and it looks like we were right.)

Some more interesting findings from the survey, and how we think they might stack up nationwide versus here in NYC:

  • 78 percent of renters do not tip building maintenance staff when they provide routine maintenance. And those who do tip $10 or less. This sounds about right for New York, too, especially given that holiday tipping can cost you your paycheck (and thus we might be a little more tight-fisted the rest of the year). 
  • One in four female renters say they have never had to call the maintenance staff to fix common problems like unclogging a toilet and removing a pest. They do it themselves. This makes perfect sense to us: New Yorkers aren't exactly shrinking violets, but mostly, who wants to have to chase down the super unless you absolutely have to? 
  • Less than half (44 percent) of respondents were completely satisfied with their current apartment maintenance. That said, more than a quarter of correspondents said they were unwilling to pay more for better service. We'd venture a guess that the number of people unhappy with their apartment maintenance is even higher in NYC, and it's more an issue of "you get what you pay for." After all, we don't know too many people looking to increase their cost of living here.


The most important person in your building, and how to co-exist

Tips on tipping the super year round

Building managers matter in a rental. Make sure yours isn't a dud

"Nothing gets out the smell of affairs" -- and other tales from building staff


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