It can cost you significant time and money to attract and keep ideal tenants, but it’s far more costly to remove ones that are less than exemplary. Instead of waiting for a lease to end only to find you need to make costly repairs to your property before a new tenant is able to inhabit it, here are the best ways to attract, screen, and keep your favorite tenants for years to come.
Refine Your Screening Process & Have a Great Lease
It’s important to build a good relationship with future tenants, even if you’re just simply showing them a potential property. If you’re renting a single-family property, or one side of a duplex, make sure you give tenants a chance to ask important questions about their future neighbors, shared spaces, or the neighborhood in general. The questions they decide to ask and the first impression they give you is as important as the one you are giving them.
In the same vein, your lease agreement is an extension of you as a landlord and your expectations of how tenants should treat the property. Rules should be clearly stated, expectations on maintenance, as well as concise agreements and terms. The more straightforward the agreement, the easier it is to find tenants that can accept your formal terms. If a quality tenant decides to rent from you, it may not only be because the property is to their standards, but the lease agreement is as well.
Provide a Move-in Packet
Make moving day simple and as stress-free as possible for the tenant. This means a clean, completely vacated space for a tenant to move into. It’s also an excellent gesture to create a packet with all compiled information about utility providers, potential internet providers, and companies that are important to note.
By taking some of the tedious burdens off of your tenant, you’re putting your best foot forward. A great tenant will remember that act of professionalism and kindness later on when they’re thinking about resigning the lease, writing up a review on you and the property, or sending potential tenants your direction. Keep in contact; be available; be quick with maintenance.
Make Yourself Available
Moving into a new space comes with its own set of ups and downs. Even if you provided a thorough walk-through to the tenants prior to the move-in day, it’s important to remember that this is a property a tenant isn’t completely familiar with yet. Make yourself available in the case that something in the property isn’t working correctly, or in the case that an important electrical box or garage key can’t be found.
Being available, even if only by a quick email or text message shows that you care about your tenant’s needs, even if what they need doesn’t require the most immediate reaction. Establish that they can contact you immediately in the case of an emergency, and can contact you within your set business hours for nonemergency questions.
Keep Them Around
Finding the ideal tenant can take time, but once you’ve found them, give them every reason to stay. Be professional but kind. Make paying bills as simple as possible. Reward your tenants when they renew their lease and show them that you appreciate their loyalty by offering anything from an annual carpet cleaning to sending a holiday gift.