Finding a tenant who is happy, responsible, and satisfied with the property they have leased or rented from you is worth their weight in gold. Although they are responsible for keeping the property in good shape inside and out, you want them to stay and develop a long-term relationship with them. Just remember: Building and maintaining relationships takes effort, especially where property management is concerned. Trust and regular maintenance are an important factor.
Ideally, if you want to increase your tenant retention rates and decrease the amount of time your property is vacant, you have to keep that tenant happy so they will want to renew their lease or rental agreement when the time comes.
Here are 4 things you can do in order to accomplish that feat:
Be responsive to the tenant’s needs – One of the biggest failures exhibited by many landlords is their lack of responsiveness to their tenant’s needs. You have to be readily accessible whenever the tenant needs you whether they have an emergency repair request or simply have questions that only you can answer. You should provide tenants with additional ways to contact you. Tenant emergencies deserve immediate attention while other concerns or inquiries should be responded to within 24 hours. When you promise to repair something, deliver on that promise.
Get to know your tenants – A little personal attention can go a long way to building good landlord/tenant relationships. If the tenant allows you to do so, get to know the names of their children and pets. Reward those tenants who always pay their rent on time and keep the property looking good by sending them an occasional “Thank You” card. Letting them know that you appreciate these things makes it easier to keep them renewing their lease in the future.
Be on the same page – This is the best way to retain tenants whether you have one property or a dozen. You should provide a clear, concise lease or rental agreement that details what the tenant’s responsibilities are as well as your own. If there are pet, smoking, or other policies in place, be sure to go through those with the tenant so they understand the penalties involved with breaking the contract. This should be done prior to the tenant moving in.
Be respectful– Good renters view the properties they rent as their personal sanctuary and should be afforded the same respect that you expect when it comes to inspections and visits. Schedule a day and time when you will be there and alert them when you are on the way to the property. This shows the tenant that you respect their schedule as well as their privacy.
While there are no equations or formulas for keeping your tenants happy, the four helpful tips listed above are a great way to start.