Renting property means dealing with tenants on a very regular basis, but it also means keeping up relations so that tenants stay happy. This is important if you want them to continue to stay in your property and pay the rent, without spending additional money on advertising and preparing your home or apartment for a new lease. You also want to keep tenants happy because reviews matter when you’re marketing to new tenants. The following tips will help you with keeping your tenants happy.
Communicate – It’s important that tenants know they can contact you and be heard, even if it’s over a small issue. Regular communication, updating your tenants on what’s happening in and around the property, and updating them on pending changes to the lease or real estate law can all help to improve your landlord/tenant relationship. One easy way to facilitate communication is to add a tenant portal, where tenants can log in to view information, email or contact you, and pay their rent. You can also offer a regular newsletter, or print a monthly brochure to send with a letter reminding them when rent is due.
Be Responsive – If you get an emergency request for a repair, you’re legally obliged to fix the issue in a reasonable time, but you should with any issue that is your responsibility. The more quickly and efficiently you handle repair problems, the happier your tenants will be. In addition, repairs are usually cheaper to fix right away, unless it’s on the weekend and you have to pay contractor weekend rates. For example, if the tenant calls to complain about a furnace issue, having someone to go out and look at it right away could prevent a major, expensive problem.
Invest in Your Property – You may have already spent money on your property more than once, but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t continue investing in it. You should usually set aside a minimum of 10% of the rent for repairs, maintenance, and upgrades. This will ensure that your property remains fresh, new, and a desirable rental, rather than falling into disrepair.
Maintenance – Regular maintenance is crucial to the appearance of the property, and you will have to keep up with it according to the Washington RCW Landlord/Tenant act. However, it’s easy and cost effective to go above and beyond requirements. Paying someone to take care of and clean up communal areas, mending fences regularly, inspecting furnaces and gutters twice a year, and paying for trimmers to keep trees on the property healthy are relatively inexpensive ways to make your tenant happy, and could also save you money by preventing disrepair.
Make it Easy – Make it easy to pay rent, easy to get in touch with you, and easy to ask for a repair. If you’re renting a single home, you don’t need social media or a client/tenant portal, but you should ensure that your phone number is readily available, and that you answer it when contacted. You can also provide email, but make sure you check it at least once a day.
If you don’t have the time or the knowledge of real estate law to manage your property effectively, a local Issaquah property management company may be the best choice for you. Contact SJA Property Management to learn more about our property management services, and how they save you time and money.