It must be said that you are well and truly on your way to becoming a likeable landlord, merely by the virtue of wanting to read up on the subject. The effort counts, and with that, our comprehensive guide about the dos and don’ts will hopefully lead your efforts to tangible results.
Some might question the entire point of becoming a likeable landlord. It makes sense; you’re not obligated to be a ‘likeable’ landlord per se. However, if you intend to retain a decent tenant, you might have to go the extra mile.
In this section, we focus on what you can do in order to become a likeable landlord.
Offer a Warm Welcome
Starting your tenant-landlord relationship on the right note is imperative if you’re intending to be a likeable landlord. It all begins when you welcome your tenant to your premises. Moving into a new locality is not an easy task. Help your tenant out by providing them with the directions and contact details of the nearest departmental stores, groceries, and eateries. If you’re really serious about going the extra mile, consider offering your tenant a well-thought-out welcome basket loaded with day-to-day essentials such as kitchen or bathroom supplies.
Be More Available
Tenants might have genuine issues that they might need you to address and it doesn’t help their cause if they are unable to reach you for long periods. While we understand it is not humanly possible for you to be available at any given point in time, simply responding promptly addressing your unavailability to the tenant also helps. Furthermore, it is also in your best interests to be available to your tenant. For instance, consider a situation where your toilet is overflowing? You don’t want damage to your property, it’s better to be more receptive instead.
Pro-tip: consider creating a list of numbers of essential service providers such as the electrician, or the plumber, or even your rental property manager for that matter. This list will certainly come handy to the tenant.
Step Outside the Rulebook
You’re sure to be very inflexible if you always play by the book when the tenant has a special (occasional) request. This might include going beyond the contents of the lease agreement. For instance, allowing the tenant an additional week to bring in the monthly rent during a period of financial crunch goes a long way in establishing a solid tenant-landlord relationship. Or consider a special request where the tenant intends to make certain tactical structural changes and presents a sound justification for this change. Treat every idea and request on its merit, and allow some flexibility to come through.
Maintain a Track
End-of-tenancy disputes are better avoided. Instances of disagreements between the landlord and the tenants about the deterioration of the rental property are common. To avoid these unnecessary disputes, you can maintain detailed notes about the inventory you’re leaving behind in the property and the prevailing condition of the property. For instance, if you see some paint coming off, make a note of that. It doesn’t help the tenants’ cause to be unfairly accused of something they didn’t do.
In this section, we will focus on the things you must avoid if you intend to remain a likeable tenant. Some of these points are critical to retaining a good tenant.
Don’t be Overbearing
Yes, it is stated that a landlord must regularly keep inspecting their rental property in the form of timely visits to the tenant. Having said that, there is a manner in which you go about doing this. For starters, never overdo the frequency with which you’re visiting the tenant. Overdoing this might establish that you don’t entirely trust the tenant with your rental property. Secondarily, as a rule, always inform the tenant prior to visiting them. Not doing so is directly disrespecting the tenants’ right to privacy.
Don’t Jump the Gun
You might face problems during the course of the tenancy period. You might suffer the occasional mishap and damage to the property, and you might think that the tenant is directly responsible for the same. Even if we are to assume the tenant is to be blamed for the unfolding situation, you should still refrain from accusing the tenant or making a conclusion about their dependability without hearing them out and ascertaining the facts of the matter. Always allow the tenant the chance to explain the situation.
Don’t be Over-friendly
A solitary dinner party with the tenants’ and a solitary Christmas card will surely be appreciated by the tenant. However, rental property advisors have mentioned instances of tenants feeling cramped and uncomfortable because of overly friendly landlords who can be downright intrusive. It must be said that such landlords mean well. But, it doesn’t always sit well with the tenant and their right to privacy and association. It’s always important to maintain a balance through professionalism in such situations.
Don’t Compromise on Safety
The fastest way to alienate the tenant is by compromising on certain essential safety aspects and letting the tenant undergo some mishap as a result of this compromise. For instance, it is your duty as a landlord to ensure your gas pipelines and electrical equipment is in perfect condition. You have the convenient option of relying on the services of a safe gas engineer to regularly service the pipework. After all, it is your responsibility to ensure your property is safe for the tenant.
As you’ve already noticed, the checklist of being a likeable landlord isn’t very complicated. This is all the more reason to ensure you have these basics taken care of. You have another means to ensure this checklist is handled correctly – through the services of a quality rental property manager. A quality property manager will offer a robust property management contract. A solid property management contract is all you need, among other landlord services, if you intend to sit back in peace and reap the rewards from your hard-earned property investment.