If you’re new to renting out properties, you might be nervous about whether or not you’re doing a good job. Being a landlord isn’t as simple as it may look on the surface.
Renting out a single property is fairly straightforward, but when you start managing several properties, you might need some help. We’re here to offer you some of our top property management tips to get you started.
Keep reading to learn all about how to be a good landlord.
1. Vet Your Tenants
If you want to have a successful rental property, you need to make sure that you’re getting the best possible tenants. Good tenants keep your property in better condition, they pay rent on time, and they may turn into long-term tenants if you play your cards right.
There are several ways to identify good tenants when you’re sorting through your applications.
First, don’t be afraid to run background checks. While you can’t always disallow tenants based on their background check, and background checks aren’t the end-all-be-all of vetting resources, it’s a great way to get an idea of who your applicant is.
Make sure that you ask about their ability to pay and be sure to accept several forms of proof. Bank statements and pay stubs are a great place to start.
You can ask your tenants about their rental history, but keep in mind that young people may be on their first or second rental! Don’t miss out on a great tenant just because they have a limited rental history.
2. Use The Right Technology
Keeping up with all of your responsibilities is tough. Why not take advantage of technology to help you out?
Professional property management companies use property management software to help them stay organized, collect rent, and manage digital marketing plans (visit website for more info).
Renters tend to prefer being able to use technology to pay rent and make maintenance requests. If you make things easy for them, they’ll be happier in your building.
3. Always Keep Up With Maintenance
Too many landlords make the mistake of only performing maintenance when tenants request it. Do you also do preventative maintenance for your building? If not, it’s time to start.
Preventative maintenance might seem like an unnecessary expense and a lot of effort, but in reality, it will save you money in the long run. When you take care of plumbing, HVAC issues, and even basic tasks like painting and keeping common spaces clean, you won’t have to deal with as many expensive problems in the future.
For example, if you offer water heater maintenance for your tenants, you’ll never have to deal with a late-night water heater emergency. If you keep up with the HVAC system, you won’t ever have to find alternate housing for your tenants if they’re without heat on a freezing winter night.
4. Market The Right Way
How are your digital marketing skills? When you’re trying to find great tenants, you need to become a professional digital marketer.
The housing market is competitive right now, so reaching potential tenants is easier than ever. That said, you still want to utilize certain tools, like SEO and social media marketing, to reach as many tenants as possible.
Make sure that you take great photos for your rental listings, you maintain a strong social media presence, and your website remains on the front page of local searches on popular search engines.
5. Take Advantage of Professional Services
Being a landlord for multiple properties is a lot of work. While dealing with one or two properties is often manageable for the average person, if you have more than that, it might be time to ask for help. That’s why one of our top tips for landlords is to invest in professional property management services.
Property management services take care of leasing, vetting tenants, digital marketing, and even collecting rent. They can deal with maintenance requests and help you navigate any legal issues.
Don’t try to do it on your own. Property management is worth it.
6. Keep Up With Laws
As a landlord, you need to know all of the laws regarding landlords, tenants, and rental properties. Do you know all about service animals and the rights of their owners? What about eviction laws or general tenants’ rights?
If the answer is “no,” you’re setting yourself up for legal trouble.
You want to acquaint yourself with the Fair Housing Act as well as any local laws within your state or city. There may be laws about rent increases, eviction requirements, and what makes a property uninhabitable.
By keeping up with laws, you’re protecting yourself and your tenants.
7. Be Responsive to Tenants
Speaking of your tenants, if you want to keep getting good applicants and maintain long-lasting tenants, you need to make sure that you’re responsive to your tenants’ needs.
This is easier if you’re working with professional property managers, but you can also do it on your own.
Make sure that your tenants have an easy method of contacting you. You should be open to phone calls, texts, and emails. Some landlords also have a chat service for quick responses.
Tenants want to be able to reach you for maintenance concerns, questions, and even complaints about other tenants or rental conditions. If you show that you’re available, they’ll appreciate you.
It’s also a good idea to accept feedback from tenants. Don’t be afraid to send out polls and surveys to ask your tenants how you can improve your rental property. This shows them that you appreciate their input and it helps you improve and attract better tenants in the future.
Try These Property Management Tips
With these property management tips in mind, you’ll be well on your way to a successful career as a landlord. Whether this is your full-time job or it’s money on the side, these landlord tips will help you maintain a thriving property (or collection of properties) and happy tenants.
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