Every landlord dreams of having high-quality renters who will pay rent promptly and take good care of the property. Luckily for Orlando property owners, it is possible to get such tenants by making your rental units attractive and putting in place thorough tenant screening procedures. Once you find quality residents, it’s important that you continuously treat them well, to keep them from becoming problematic. Here are practical tips to ensure a smooth relationship between you and your tenants.
Set clear rules early
A primary source of conflict between landlords and renters stems from unclear rules, where both parties are not sure of what their roles and responsibilities are. For this reason, be kind to your tenants and give them clearly defined guidelines of what you expect of and from them. You should not wait until the tenant moves into the premises for you to introduce the laws. Make sure to include them in the lease agreement. Besides being to the point, the rules should be realistic and in compliance with both the legal and fair housing laws. Moreover, once you have set the rules, do not go changing or adding new ones while the contract is underway.
Help your tenants understand your rules
It is not enough just to have clearly written rules for your residents. What may seem clear to you, might be confusing for your tenant. Therefore, you need to ascertain that your tenants have understood what the rules are and that they consent to abide by them. The best way for you to do this is by sitting down with your tenant and going over the rental agreement with him or her. If they have any questions or concerns, be ready and willing to clarify them or direct them to an attorney if it is a legal question. Sitting down and explaining the rental agreement not only helps to explain the rules but also contributes to identifying and addressing contentious issues that have the potential of escalating into conflict.
Encourage prompt rental payment
One of the perks of having high-quality Orlando tenants is the uninterrupted flow of rental income. You want to make it easy for your clients to pay the rent each time it is due. For instance, instead of insisting that they use a single rent payment method, you could give them multiple options, such as automated payment systems, or bank standing orders. By so doing, a tenant will use whichever solution he or she feels is safe and convenient. You could also consider rewarding residents who pay promptly, as an incentive for them to continue making timely payments. Lastly, always issue your residents with rent payment receipts as an acknowledgment that you have received their payments.
Charge your units reasonably
The undoing of many landlords is their desire to make quick money. As a result, they either price their units exorbitantly high or they charge them at a below-market price to attract tenants, only to increase them ruthlessly once they find a renter. While that might seem like a novel strategy, it is likely to blow up in your face. Your renters will perceive you to be unscrupulous, and they will refrain from renting your units. Instead of charging exorbitant or hiking the rent unnecessarily, consider keeping up with the prevailing market rates. You should only increase the rent when it is justifiable and only after giving fair notice. You should be keeping up with market rates and determine the rental rate for comparable units.
Respond to their concerns promptly
Nothing transforms a high-quality Orlando tenant into a problematic one faster than reports or complaints that go unanswered. Many residents interpret this as a sign that you don’t care about them and that your only concern is the rental income. Consequently, they will try to lash back at you by deliberately delaying and at times withholding the rent. If you wish to keep your residents long-term, put in place measures for addressing their concerns each time they arise. Better still, why not schedule routine property maintenance to help identify and address any potential concerns before they arise.
Do not enter their premises unannounced
Even though you own the property, making spontaneous visits to your tenants is unwise. Courtesy dictates that whenever you wish to visit the units, be it to inspect them, carry out routine maintenance or for any other reason, take the time first to inform your occupants. In addition, states have strict rules that are governed by statutes regarding the noticing and entry of units. The only exemption to this rule is in the event of an emergency situation. It is best to review your state statutes and entry requirements for Landlords.
Remain personable but professional
Since your Orlando rental property is your business, your tenants are your trading partners. For this reason, be careful not to confuse the relationship. Even though you want to establish and maintain good rapport with your renters, be careful not to get too cozy with them. Friendship and business hardly go well together. Always remember that first and foremost your priority is your business relationship.