Landlords have been around for thousands of years, and they’re as relevant today as they ever were. Regardless of how much time you have or your current financial standing, you can do a few things to make sure you’re a quality landlord and not a bad tenant.
Good landlords provide excellent property services
As a president of a real estate investment company has said, “I’ve seen first-hand the value of great landlords. Great landlords care deeply about their tenants, treating them like family. They’re there for their needs, not just their wants.”
When people rent from a landlord, they usually search for quality, reliable housing. Whether you’re a first-time landlord or a longtime property manager, you should understand the tenants in your building and their needs. If you don’t know your tenants well, you could meet some whose needs are very different from yours.
In most situations, the rent you pay reflects how much you’re able to afford. For some tenants, that means paying a little more each month. For others, it can mean paying a lot more.
The rent control laws in most US states guarantee that residents living in apartment buildings with rent control will only be required to pay higher rent for a specific time. This is known as the “cap” rate. It’s a formula that measures the increase in the cost of living that a property has to incur to increase the rent by a certain amount.
On the surface, the cap rate formula looks simple. However, it can be tricky. Each state’s laws and regulations about them are different.
Respect their tenants
There can be several bad landlord-tenant situations. When a tenant has a problem, they need to contact the landlord. Landlords are not employees or managers of tenants; they’re tenants, too.
A tenant who’s respectful to you and your property will do more than keep you as a tenant– they’ll make you a much better tenant by example. A good landlord will never use their authority or responsibility to treat a tenant like an enemy. No matter how badly things go, a good landlord will never use their power to hurt a tenant.
Maintain their property
As a landlord, you should take care of your rental property. This includes keeping it clean, maintaining the appliances and equipment on the property, and removing the trash. While it’s nice to have some hobbies and interests, doing things that require work can feel very lonely.
Even if you have a family or a full-time job, you should make time each week to clean and maintain your rental property. Dangerous and costly maintenance problems will occur if you don’t keep your property in tip-top working order. This could include broken window glass, burned-out lights, loose or missing ceiling tiles, etc.
Poorly managed rental properties are like six-figure investments: they’re rarely profitable and take a lot of work. If a tenant complains, a landlord who doesn’t clean or maintain their rental property is not only neglecting their duties, they’re putting their tenants at risk.
Collaborate with their neighbors
All great landlords know how to collaborate with their neighbors. They form partnerships with other great landlords, who can then form partnerships with other great neighborhood associations that can help defend your rights as a landlord.
Collaboration is a two-way street. If your neighborhood association is good, you should be good. If they’re not holding you accountable, have issues, are not taking care of themselves, or need your help, you should step in.
Take care of their equipment
It’s not just your tenants who have needs. Your equipment needs maintenance, too. And it’s not just about what you have—it’s about how you use it. If you don’t keep your equipment in good working order, it could cause dangerous situations which might involve law enforcement, such as broken windows or door glass, carbon monoxide poisoning, etc. This could also lead to pricey repairs, increased energy costs, and even the loss of tenants.
Respond to their tenants’ needs
A good landlord never immediately says “yes” to a tenants’ request. They take the time to get to know their needs and wants, providing appropriate and thoughtful answers.
If your tenant wants to change the lock on their door, you need to be able to give them a proper and honest answer as to why this is happening and what they can do to prevent it in the future. If they want to add on to their rental unit, you need to be able to tell them honestly how much it will cost and why.
Offer a reason for staying
Even if you hate the place, you should try to find a reason to keep renting from a good landlord.
As a landlord, it’s important to make sure the rental property is in good order. That includes things such as the roof’s condition, plumbing, the condition of doors and windows, and the condition of the grass. Plus, if something is out of order or needs repair, you should be able to fix it as soon as possible.
As a landlord, you provide security to your tenants, just like you provide safety to your loved ones.
You should never be without protection if you’re lucky enough to have a family or even just a few good friends. Many of us get that way by being a landlord. If you always have someone you can turn to for help, you will be much more stable and less likely to fall into the pitfalls of absentee or poor-quality renting.