A good tenant, one that pays the rent on time, takes care of the rental property, and doesn’t cause issues with other tenants, can be a huge asset to a property owner. Unfortunately, finding quality tenants can be a challenge, and when you do find one, it’s important to make sure that you, as the property owner or manager, are taking steps to make their residency a quality experience. Sometimes, landlords will unintentionally do things that drive away good tenants.
How Are Landlords Losing Good Tenants?
A number of things that landlords might do could cause them to lose quality tenants. When you have a tenant who pays the rent and doesn’t cause problems, consider the benefits of forging a personal relationship of trust between the two of you. You don’t have to go out to dinner with them or invite them to your next gathering, but it could definitely be advantageous to be on good terms. Here are some ways landlords can lose good tenants and ways to help you build a solid business relationship based on trust.
Lack of Communication — Landlords who are hard to reach, who don’t return phone calls, or who simply aren’t responsive to their tenants’ needs will often find that the good renters will begin to move out. A lack of communication is not the way to solve problems. If you want to keep quality renters, it’s important to return calls promptly as well as listen to their concerns. Good communication can alleviate many problems.
Putting Off Repairs — When a renter has a repair issue, it’s important to make sure that it is handled in a timely manner. While you might not be able to handle the repair immediately, keep the renter informed regarding when repairs will be made. A good tenant doesn’t have to live with broken appliances or other repair problems, they’ll simply leave at the end of their lease.
Not Screening Prospective Tenants Thoroughly — If you neglect to thoroughly screen new tenants, it probably won’t be long before your good renter has an undesirable neighbor. Loud parties, inconsiderate behaviors, or illegal actions will likely drive your good tenant away in a hurry. It’s important to make sure that every tenant is a quality tenant.
Infringing on the Tenants Right to Privacy — Many landlords adopt an attitude that the property is theirs, so they’ll access a tenant’s unit whenever it’s necessary. If it’s an emergency, then it’s understandable that you can’t give notice, but if it’s not an emergency issue, respect the tenant’s privacy and let them know in advance that you’ll need to access their unit. Give them a reason as well as a date and time frame to expect you or your repair crew.
A Huge Rent Increase — Most renters are willing to accept occasional rent increases, but raising the rent too high at one time is often enough to make them start looking elsewhere. Try to keep increases manageable for the tenant while still meeting your income goals.
Allowing the Property to Fall into Disrepair — This is similar to tenant maintenance or repair issues. If you let the property start to deteriorate, there’s no reason a good tenant will want to stay. Maintenance and upkeep should be a main objective.
Being a landlord isn’t for everyone. If you chose to manage your rental properties yourself then there is essentially only one rule to operate by: be the type of landlord you would want if you were a renter. If you don’t want to be bothered with midnight phone calls, keeping up with maintenance or screening potential renters but still want the passive income rental properties can offer, then consider hiring a property manager. Property manager will handle all of the day to day issues in exchange for a percentage of the rent that is charged. In either case, owning rental properties can be a lucrative business but only if operated and managed properly.
For more detailed information about how to find and keep good renters click here.