In general, both parties should keep good records, including copies of notes, letters and photographs make all agreements specific, and keep them. Both parties should make an effort to talk to each other and try to understand each other's point of view. Strive to make the landlord-tenant relationship work in a context of what is reasonable, fair, and respectful of the needs of both parties.
If disagreements arise, every effort should be made to negotiate a settlement. Write down any agreements that are reached. If direct negotiation isn't successful, mediation is often the next best alternative. Mediation is an assisted negotiation process in which a neutral mediator helps the parties communicate and listen to each other's point of view, develop a list of issues to be resolved, and negotiate a settlement that meets both parties' needs. Agreements reached in mediation are drawn up by the mediator and signed by the parties. For more information, contact the Community Mediation Service at 441-4364.