I’m not saying YOU are a bad landlord, but there is always a room for progress. And let’s face it, a number of landlords have a lot to work on. This however isn’t about the way they treat their tenants (even though there are a lot problems on that field as well), but more about how they are ruining their business without even noticing or knowing it.
Read the following 6 tips for being a successful landlord and consider whether you are already following them or not.
1. Know that investing is not a hobby
This is the number one reason why most of landlords literally ruin everything they own. This is YOUR BUSINESS, not your hobby, and it should be treated that way. When you treat your “role” with the same respect and organization that you’d treat any other of your business ventures, other people will too, which causes more success and money in your pocket of course.
Commit to it, read a book about quality business leadership, consider systems you have that can fix some maintenance concerns without involving your presence etc. Also, you can make your job a lot easier for yourself by teaching your tenants how to pay rent online – this will save you a lot of time, paper and energy.
2. Know who you should let in
When it comes to tenants’ part, one mistake the majority of landlords make is letting the wrong people in. This way, you are condemning yourself for things such as late rent, evictions and trashed apartments or homes. Sometimes, you just need to show no emotion and observe things from a logical point of view.
When screening for tenants, require the following:
- He/she has to make at least 3 times the monthly rent in stable income
- Had no evictions: ever
- Has no recent felonies
- Has good references from his/hers previous landlord
Next, don’t waste your time showing property to those who are not qualified – let them know about your standards right away. Also, check their vehicle, attitudes, punctuality and appearance.
One great tenant has the ability to afford the rent payment, is willing to pay on time, has a stable job, is clean and has housekeeping skills and has no contact with drugs, crime or any other illegal activity.
3. Tenants deserve respect…
Nobody said you have to like all of them – you can’t. On the other hand, however you are feeling about them should have nothing to do with the business relationship with you two. They should be treated equally, regardless to your feelings towards them. For example, why should you let a hot flirty blonde from third floor be late with her rent, and not do the same for 70-year-old Mr. Jenkins?
4. …But not too much
You may be thinking: “What? This is ridiculous!” but it really isn’t. Allow me to explain myself. Your job is to be fair – not everyone’s best buddy. You can’t let your tenants take advantage of your kindness. If you are expected to fulfill your duties as a landlord, expect the same from them. By allowing your tenants to break the rules you established, you are opening yourself up for so much struggle and financial losses. Being respectful is not the same as being nice.
5. Clear communication is the key
Be clear, be precise and professional with your tenants. Give them multiple channels to reach you and let them know which ones you prefer. Also, when there’s money involved, always communicate in written form so you have a clear evidence on how much they owe you, the exact date you expect them to pay etc.
6. Know the laws
The last thing you, as a landlord want, is a lawsuit. Make sure you read all of the applicable (city, state and country) real estate laws, as well as to keep them written somewhere in the back of your head. First of all ensure that you follow the law, and second, ensure they do to.
Finally, a successful landlord is not the one who tremors whenever the phone rings, it is someone who looks forward to the beginning of the next month because he knows his pockets are going to fill to the top. Success is possible if you take the right steps.
I hope this post has helped you to consider making some changes to improve the quality of your business. If you have more ideas and tips, feel free to leave them in the comment section below.