It’s a well known fact that better landlords attract better tenants. But why? Well, look at it this way. If you consider your rental property as a business, then your tenants are your paying customers. In that case, wouldn’t you want to keep your best customers for as long as possible and attract new customers? The average landlord will spend between 20 to 40 hours to fill each vacant property each time, along with all of the financial expense that comes with new tenants. But a good landlord will have a much lower tenant turnover rate, saving money and time, and fostering a great customer relationship. So today, we want to share some tips with you about how you can go from being a good landlord to a great one.
Customise Your Lease
Most rental leases are more or less the same –and for the most part they should be. This ensures you have covered all your bases legally, and everyone has a single point of reference for if anything goes wrong. It will cover the basic things like rent, deposits and any other legal requirements. But not every tenant is the same, and the most successful landlords employ some flexibility. For example, pet friendly rentals are always in high demand, with very few landlords wanting to risk it. However, if you customise your lease to allow pets, but with clear rules around who is responsible for damage, paying for repairs, cleaning, fumigation and all of the other issues that can come with pets, you will find your property soars in popularity and your tenants are incredibly grateful. You can also put in your own preferences around things like smoking, tenant behaviour and even post forwarding. A customised lease allows you to be flexible and ensures you won’t get caught out.
Offer A Warm Welcome
It’s easy to get all the big things ticked off, but when it comes to renting out a property, it’s the little things that count. When a new tenant moves into your property, there are a few little things you can do to make them feel welcomed and valued as a tenant (which they should be, they are providing you with income). For example, when a tenant is first moving in, the last thing on their mind is picking up toilet paper. So to help them out and let them know you care, you could ensure each bathroom is stocked with a roll of toilet paper and a bar of soap ready for them to move in. Other ways to offer a warm welcome could be writing them a welcome letter, leaving a roll of labels with mail forwarding addresses pre-printed, or including a change of address pack from the post office with their move in pack. These little details go a long way to creating a good relationship with your tenants, which in turn will lead to longer tenancies and far fewer problems.
Make Repairs Quickly
You might not think that faulty plug is too urgent, but to the person living with it, it might be a real problem. When a tenant reports a problem to you, make sure you acknowledge that you’ve received their report, and outline what you intend to do about it. If it’s something that requires a repair, make sure it is done in a timely manner, and not left for weeks at a time. If you don’t have a maintenance contract with your estate agent, then you will need to have a good relationship with some local, trustworthy tradesmen who will be able to do the job quickly and to a high standard. Simply making repairs to your property will ensure your tenants are happy and your property stays in good condition – without picking up any long term damage.
At the end of the day, being a landlord is a job, so it’s important to approach it with professionalism. If you ever meet your tenants in person, be sure to dress neatly, and make sure you always follow the lease guidelines with regards to turning up at the property. And of course, remember to always keep your cool. If you end up getting into a disagreement with your tenants at any point during their tenancy, approach it calmly and professionally. You don’t want to become the next viral ‘crazy landlord’ YouTube clip or horror story that does the rounds online. Never yell or swear at your tenants, and remember that your tenant is your customer – so you should treat them as any other business would treat its customers.
At Northwood, we believe that renting out properties can be a truly rewarding experience for both tenants and landlords. That’s why we’re always on the lookout for people who need help to be great landlords, or landlords who want to be a part of our unique guaranteed rent scheme – giving them access to great tenants and a guaranteed income, every month. For more information, just get in touch with our team today.