Thursday, May 29, 2014

Top 3 tips for landlords

Whether you've been hired as a property manager or you're renting out your own property, being a landlord can be a trying task, having to handle tenant requests, property maintenance and all the other details that come with the job. 

While you can end up being good friends with your tenants, it's important to remember that your primary relationship is one of business.

Thankfully, there are a number of things that you can do to keep yourself sane, keep your tenants happy and your business prosperous.

1. Know your references

When screening potential tenants, make sure they can provide references as well as proof that they have the financial means to keep up with the monthly rent. It should also go without saying that a clean criminal record is paramount. 

Be sure to follow up on the references as well as their credit score - doing your due diligence can prevent a lot of costly headaches and bad experiences by keeping out the bad apples from the very beginning.

2. Treat your business as a business

While you can end up being good friends with your tenants, it's important to remember that your primary relationship is one of business. Establish rules for them to follow, like setting office hours during which they can contact you (to prevent calls in the middle of the night) or specific guidelines when it comes to paying rent on time. 

It's crucial to get all these rules down in writing before they even sign on as tenants, so you won’t be accused of making up rules on the spot. Be thorough - you may even wish to discuss it with your lawyer when drafting your lease agreement to make sure you have all your legal bases covered, and they may have some good ideas for your business as well.

3. A quality property leads to quality tenants

You can minimize worry about the kinds of tenants you attract by making sure your property is good enough to attract desirable tenants. 

A well-maintained lawn, working fixtures and well-kept interiors increases the value of your property while making it more desirable for people who are able to appreciate the work you put into it, which often translates into people who are a pleasure to do business with. 


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