Good tenants prefer to rent properties from good landlords. How can you ensure you’re one of those good landlords who is responsive to the needs of tenants while prioritizing the needs of your investment?
We have some ideas.
Good landlords collect rent and fix things when they’re broken. Great landlords are available and responsive to their tenants. They’re empathetic and fair. They’re also consistent and clear about their expectations.
Transparent communication builds good relationships. If you want to improve your reputation as a landlord, consider some of these tips.
Have a Clear and Consistent Lease Agreement
Tenants need to know what to expect, and a good landlord will communicate those expectations clearly and consistently.
It starts with your lease agreement, where all potential questions should be anticipated and answered. Before a tenant signs your lease, go over it in detail. You want a lease agreement that’s fair, protective of your San Diego investment property and your rights, and compliant with all local, state, and federal laws.
When your tenants know what you expect, they can perform responsibly. Make sure your lease agreement tells tenants how much rent is due and when it should be paid. Include information on grace periods and late payment penalties. Make sure everything in your lease conforms to the recent rent control and just cause eviction laws that have gone into effect in California.
A great landlord doesn’t keep tenants guessing.
Be Accountable for Your Own Responsibilities
Your tenants have expectations, too. They’ll want you to provide a safe and habitable home. They’ll want to know that you care about them and their needs. Make sure you’re willing to provide resources and respond to requests for help.
Be considerate as well. You aren’t permitted to show up at the property unannounced and demand a chance to look around. Leave tenants alone to enjoy the quiet and private home they’re paying for. Schedule maintenance and walk through appointments in advance, and explain why you need to get inside. Remember that even though you own the property, your tenants are living there. They are entitled to be left alone unless they have a question or need some help.
A great landlord is respectful of a tenant’s privacy and space.
Be Responsive to Maintenance Issues
One of the things that tenants find most frustrating is a lack of response or a slow response when a rental property repair is needed. When you receive a repair request from your tenants, take care of it right away. They might be asking for something minor, or maybe it’s a cosmetic issue that they’re complaining about. Still, the request deserves a response.
If you’re going to make the repair, make it right away. If you’re not going to make the repair, explain why it doesn’t meet your established standards for what needs to be repaired. Communicate transparently so they understand your reasoning.
When you do make a repair, schedule the work at times that are convenient for your tenants. Follow up with them after the work is done so you can be sure the problem was completely fixed. Ask if the tenants were pleased with the vendors and if they were treated respectfully.
A great landlord keeps the property well-maintained.
These are just a few of the things that can turn you into a great landlord. It’s important to establish and maintain a good relationship with your tenants. If you have any questions or need any help, please contact us at Harcourts Avanti.
Harcourts Avanti is a full-service property management company that manages long term as well as vacation rentals in Del Mar, Encinitas, Carlsbad, Cardiff, Carmel Valley, Solana Beach, and the surrounding San Diego areas.