When you set out to rent a property and maintain it as a landlord, you invest time and money in locating the right tenant. Your ultimate goal is to find a responsible tenant who will be a long-term renter, pay the rent on time, take care of your property, and return the property to you at the end of the lease in good condition. To find great tenants, make sure you screen each one using our tenant screening service. Even if your search for a great tenant is successful, you can lose your tenant if you don’t learn how to be a good landlord.
When you consider how to keep good tenant relations, you must understand that, by law, you have certain responsibilities to all of your tenants. When you perform your legal duties as a landlord, you have done much of the work necessary to make your tenants happy. The most important thing you can do to maintain a good relationship with your tenants is to keep your promises and perform your duties in a timely fashion. Do not promise to make a repair, for example, and then procrastinate or neglect to own up to your promise. You will be more successful in rental management, if you are a reliable person.
Before giving your tenant possession of the property, you will have them sign a lease agreement. Part of being a good landlord is writing a lease that clearly states the duties and obligations of both the tenant and the landlord. The more specific you can be in your rental agreement, the better chance you have of avoiding a misunderstanding during the term of the lease. LandLordStation.com offers a discussion about what constitutes a good lease agreement in the Landlord Forms section of our website.
As the landlord, you have a duty to give the tenant possession of a property that is clean, well-maintained and safe. Always change the locks between tenants so that the new tenant doesn’t have to worry about former tenants, realtors or other people having keys to the property. When the property is vacant (usually after one lease has ended and before another one begins) is a good time to make sure that all of the appliances are clean and in good working order. Also, be sure that the outdoor areas are clean, mowed and trimmed and that any fence on the property is secure.
Once that you have assured that your tenant has been given possession of property that is clean and safe, understand that it is your duty to keep it maintained. Be sure to respond to any tenant complaints and arrange for repairs as soon as possible. When performing routine maintenance or repairs, give the tenant notice in writing of the time you intend to enter the premises, and give them the opportunity to be present if they wish. Emergency issues should be dealt with immediately to fully discharge your responsibility as a landlord. Go the extra mile and, when you have to hire a repair person to fix something, accompany them to the premises and observe the repair. This will assure your tenant that you care about protecting them and their possessions. Also, share with your tenant our article about tenant maintenance tips to ensure that both of you are on the same team when it comes to taking care of your property.
In some situations, state law requires that the yard and common areas of a multiple-family unit must be maintained by you as the landlord. Whether you are bound to do outdoor maintenance by law, or as stated in the lease agreement, be sure that you maintain the grounds and perform other maintenance jobs in a timely fashion.
If you manage a multi-dwelling unit or an apartment complex, you may need to resolve tenant disputes. If that is the case, it is important to handle each situation fairly, legally and in writing. Make sure that your lease sets rules, in detail, for common areas, parking and behavior so that all of your tenants know what is expected of them.
As you can see, being a good landlord requires diligence and effort on your part. After using our tenant screening process to select the best possible tenants, and after allowing them to take possession of your property, it is important to take every action to treat them fairly and honestly. It is easy to learn how to be a good landlord when you use the good landlord tips from LandLordStation.com. We offer landlord information, and we have friendly and knowledgeable customer care specialists to answer your questions so that you can learn how to be a good landlord.
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