As a landlord, you may recognize that it is your job to ensure that your tenants have what they need to live safely and comfortably at your rental properties. Finding the best ways to maximize renter satisfaction without going over budget can be challenging, but it is possible with some thought, consideration, and careful planning. This article covers how to become a smarter landlord and maintain a positive rapport with your tenants, essential to a healthy property rental business. Let’s get started.
Interview Potential Tenants First
When you have listings for rent, you don’t want to make the rental mistake of welcoming the first few tenants interested in your properties. It is vital that you feel comfortable with the people you’re renting your properties to and that they understand the terms you’ve set in place.
Make sure to have interested renters fill out applications for your listings so that you can run background checks and acquire information such as their rental history report. This way, you gather the information you need to feel comfortable renting your properties out to them. Make sure that you also interview potential tenants that pass the preliminary checks so you can get to know those to whom you’re willing to rent your properties.
Take Photos Before Move-In Date
Take photos of your properties before the new tenants move in to prevent disputes over damages later. With photographs that include dates, you can show evidence of the presence or absence of any damages before tenants move in. This can make it easier to address financial obligations later, including whether a portion of your tenants’ security deposit needs to be put back into the property for repairs.
Have Your Property Inspected
Landlords are obligated to ensure that their rental units follow the legal requirements for safety and sanitation. Rule out issues such as pest infestations, lead paint, and electricity hazards before you even put your properties up for rent. Preventing accidents and injury at your rental properties is essential for the safety of your tenants and your title as a landlord.
Fix Up Your Rental Units
If you want to find loyal tenants, you need to do your part by fixing up your rental units ahead of time. Serious renters will be more likely to consider your place if you keep it in good shape. Every renter has some rental horror stories about the ‘landlord special’ so be sure you aren’t living out to these low expectations. Patch up any blemishes on the walls, hire professional cleaning services, steam-clean the carpets, and find affordable ways to upgrade your properties so that they showcase modern appeal. Even something as simple as changing the window treatments can make a big difference to interested renters.
Require A Lease Contract
To prevent legal issues, make sure that you establish a contract that you and your tenants go over and sign to make the rental agreement official. With everything spelled out and confirmed in writing, you decrease your risks as a landlord, such as tenants failing to pay rent on time or staying past their lease timeframes.
You can also address your policies on pets, late fees, and other factors in your leases as well. If you happen to get inquiries about specific renter arrangements, such as independent contractors looking for a place for discounted rent in exchange for repair work you may need, specify these terms in writing if you’re open to these offers.
The Bottom Line
To become a smarter landlord, you must take care of the safety essentials for safe renting before your tenants move in. Select the tenants you trust to follow through on your terms and utilize background checks that give you insight into tenant history, so you know what you’re walking into before you finalize a lease agreement.