Renting property to tenants is a great source of income, but being a landlord entails hefty responsibilities. Before deciding on the tenants with the help of online platforms, you can do online tenant screening to ensure you know who you’re allowing into your properties. Not only do you have to maintain your properties to meet certain standards, but you should also foster good relationships with your tenants.
Failure to preserve good relations with tenants could end in property damage, vacancies, broken leases, and evictions. To avoid these unpleasant results, here are four tips to nurture a stronger connection with your renters.
1. Work with a professional property manager
It’s not usually that hard to communicate with tenants directly, but it’s less stressful if you hire a professional property manager to work on your behalf. Most of the time, your tenants will probably be easy to talk to, but if they ever grow upset, you’ll be thankful if you have a professional to handle the more difficult interactions.
Property managers can take care of your renters by tackling all of your responsibilities, from collecting rent to performing repairs. For instance, Green Residential in San Antonio handles these tasks and many more for their Texas landlord clients.
When a property manager handles all tenant relations, you’re less likely to get sued by a tenant for committing a simple error under landlord-tenant law. The laws are strict and clear, and the courts tend to favor tenants over landlords. Fortunately for you, property managers have a strong grasp of the law.
2. Never let problems go without resolution
This is great advice for any relationship, business or not: Never leave issues unresolved. If you have a problem with a tenant, it’s vital to talk with them about it or handle it in the form of an official notice, where appropriate.
For instance, if your tenant keeps leaving garbage outside of the unit for days at a time, don’t avoid the situation. Give them an official notice to inform them they may not place trash outside their door for any length of time, effective immediately.
Refuse is a pretty big problem for some landlords, and if you’re dealing with tenants who make a mess with their trash, the problem will only grow steadily worse the longer you avoid addressing it.
The same goes for any other concern you might have about a tenant. If they’re breaking the lease, for example, let them know you’re aware of the violation with a notice that advises them to correct the problem or vacate.
Don’t put off these types of communications. Handle them immediately.
The longer you hold onto issues, the more frustrated with your tenants you’ll become, and the more explosive you’re apt to be when you reach a breaking point. By addressing issues swiftly, you’ll weed out poor tenants and preserve your energy for fostering healthy relationships with your good ones.
3. Fix issues fast
Tenants like to have their complaints addressed and resolved quickly, so make sure you respond to their requests for repairs and maintenance as soon as possible. Even if it’s just realigning closet doors or replacing a screen on the bathroom window, you should make your tenants a priority.
Obviously, emergency situations should come first, but don’t delay a repair just because it’s not severe. The longer you delay in fixing an issue, the more a tenant will be tempted to feel unimportant to you.
An issue might seem small to you, but to a tenant it could be a major source of frustration. Fixing problems fast lets the tenants know you value them and their needs, even if it’s just a matter of convenience.
When tenants feel valued, they’re more likely to treat your property well, pay the rent on time, and regard you with respect. If you make your tenants feel like they don’t matter, they’ll stop caring about your property and you could be surprised by the damage when they’ve moved out.
4. Don’t argue with your tenants
Perhaps the best way to maintain good relationships with your tenants is to avoid arguing. Yes, even if your tenant is wrong, don’t quarrel.
That doesn’t mean you shouldn’t impose a fine, serve an eviction notice, or ask the tenant whether they can fix a problem. It just means you should avoid going head-to-head with an upset renter.
Don’t get involved in a bickering match. Serve your notice or place your phone call and leave it to your tenant to comply.
Set the right tone from the start
Cultivating a positive relationship with a tenant starts the first time you make contact. Set the tone for the relationship from the start by honoring your word and expecting them to do the same.
If they turn up late for a showing, let them know that being late will cut into the time you have to show them the unit. Make it clear that you’re in charge, and your tenants will be less likely to take advantage of you in the future.