8 Ways to Get Good Tenants to Stay Put in Your Investment Property
What’s every rental property investor’s dream? It’s to get a good tenant, who pays on time and takes care of the property, and stays put for years.
For many investors, however, this is a pipedream. Many landlords are lucky to get a decent tenant to sign on for another year.
Why is it so hard to keep good tenants in place? This is because investment property management takes a lot of work to do well.
You can’t just give someone a key and then disappear for a year until it’s renewal time. It takes work to keep tenants happy. If done right, they’ll continue paying rent for years to come.
Looking for tips on finding good tenants? Wondering how to keep those tenants in your self-managed investment property for years to come? Keep reading for eight easy tips.
1. Revamp Your Listing
When it comes to finding higher-quality tenants, it’s important to have a high-quality rental listing. Make sure the home or apartment is professionally cleaned. Hire a photographer to take photos.
Take time to write out the property description. A better listing may make the property feel like it’s too much for lower-quality renters, essentially scaring them off. In turn, you’ll attract the right tenants who can’t wait to call your property home.
2. Increase Rent
Another way of increasing tenant quality is by raising the rent.
Generally, those with a higher income, who can afford a higher rent, tend to be more responsible. They’ll take care of the property, preventing things from breaking or falling into disrepair.
3. Cater to Your Ideal Demographic
Depending on where a property is located, you might have a different ideal tenant in mind. If in a college town, you might be looking to rent out to college students, who are likely to stay put for two to four years at a time.
You can set up the home to cater to them by adding bicycle storage to the garage or having a back patio. There can also be built-in desks in the rooms.
If you’d prefer a young family, make sure the backyard is fenced in, a huge selling point to families with small children. Your language in your rental listing can also work to attract your ideal client.
For college students, share how easy it is to get to the local campus from your property. For families, list out nearby parks and trails that they’d likely be interested in.
4. Screen Potential Tenants
Tenant screening is very important once you start having qualified tenants applying for your property. They might look and sound nice, but you want to ensure they have a positive history before entrusting them with one of your greatest assets.
Tenant screening involves a background check, credit history, and eviction history. You don’t want to lease to someone who is likely unable to pay rent or who might use your property for illegal activities.
5. Hire an Investment Property Management Company
Finding and screening tenants is every investor’s nightmare. Investors like to find, negotiate, and acquire new deals. They don’t especially enjoy the landlord responsibilities that come with buy and hold rentals.
For happy clients and an easier workload, you should hire a rental property management company. They can take care of all the marketing, screening, and leasing responsibilities for your property, ensuring rent is paid each and every month with far fewer headaches for you. You can find more information on property managers here.
6. Respond to Maintenance Concerns Immediately
One of the most important aspects of positive landlord-tenant relationships is fast, clear communication. When a tenant has a concern, make sure they feel heard.
It’s important to act on these requests as quickly as possible. If you don’t fix a broken toilet for two weeks, do you really think they are going to stay once their lease is up?
Treat your tenants with the respect and dignity they deserve by keeping your word and taking action quickly.
7. Offer a Longer Lease Option
If you have a good tenant, and they are approaching their renewal time, it might be a good idea to offer a longer lease term. You would obviously benefit from a good tenant signing a two-year lease rather than a one year, as it locks in income for 24 more months without any vacancy.
And it also might be just the thing to convince your tenant to stay as well. Some people like the security of knowing they have a place to for two more years.
You could even offer a discount on their monthly rent for locking in a two-year lease instead of just one.
Also, don’t delay when it’s approaching lease renewal time. The worst thing to do is show up on lease day expecting a signature. While you’ve been thinking about it for months, your tenant probably hasn’t been.
Instead, send them a reminder three months before, and again a month before, so they have time to think about it beforehand.
8. Send a Christmas Present
Want to put a cherry on top? Make sure you send your tenants a Christmas present. It could be as simple as a gift card to a local restaurant or mall.
It can also be much more elaborate. Whatever you choose, it’s sure to surprise them. Tenants aren’t used to receiving anything from landlords, who are often viewed as distant, angry people who just want money.
Show them that you care about them with a little gift.
The Golden Rule
When it comes to maximizing returns on your rental, keeping tenants long-term, and enjoying zero vacancies, it’s all up to you. Your investment property management skills are what determines your tenant’s experience.
If it’s a great experience, there’s no reason why you can’t keep the same tenants for years. Remember, it always comes down to the golden rule.
If you were a tenant, how would you want to be treated? Would you want a landlord that didn’t fix plumbing issues for a month? Probably not, so make sure you don’t treat your paying tenants that way.
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