There are times when it can be very frustrating as a landlord, with all the new legislation regarding tenants’ rights, and the continual need for maintenance. If you’re wondering how to be a successful landlord during these difficult times, consult the list of habits below that will prove to be invaluable for you. By reviewing this list and carrying out the action items, you should have all the qualities of a landlord that will make you successful.
1. Good communications
Bad or insufficient communication is one of the signs of a bad landlord, and it will cause issues with your tenants and the vendors you do business with. Whenever tenants have officially requested some kind of maintenance, it should be addressed promptly. It’s also important for you to have a good conversation flow with your vendors. This will prove essential when you require something from them, and it will ensure that you don’t linger at the bottom of their list. Any important communications you have with tenants or others should be committed to writing. This is one of the characteristics of how to become a good Successful landlord.
2. Modern technology
Your job will be made much easier as a landlord if you have modern technology and software in place. This takes in everything from using a high-quality camera for property photos to installing online applications for potential tenants. Your camera doesn’t have to be a professional one, just good enough to take clear, excellent pictures of the unit. Most iPhones are equipped with digital cameras that have excellent clarity which can be used to take property photos.
3. Know the laws and regulations
Each year, it seems like there are several new laws passed that affect rental properties. If you fail to comply with any of these laws or regulations, it can cost you a ton of money in legal fees. Be advised that not all of these laws will impact your rental operation, and some may only apply to different types of housing. Still, you need to learn about any new legislation, so that you can comply. For this reason, subscribe to any real estate newsletters issued by your city authorities. This will help you keep abreast of any changing regulations, so you can implement them and avoid penalties.
4. Get organized
One of the best qualities a landlord can have is excellent organizational skills. This is even more important when you have more than one rental property to deal with. Today it’s smart to keep all your tenant screening data in digital format so that you can monitor them much better. If you’re someone who relies more on printed copies, make sure you establish a segregated file for all things related to renting issues. You should also scan them into your local computer so you’ll have easier access.
5. Tenant screenings
All landlords hope for the ideal tenant, which is a quiet family that treats the unit with proper respect. Unfortunately, you don’t get to choose who occupies your unit. State laws prohibit you from choosing tenants based on any kind of bias such as color, race, disability, or familial status. However, you do have some control over which tenant is ultimately selected. You can impose a minimum credit score, and a minimum income each month, and you can insist on spotless previous rental history.
6. Maintain good relationships
It’s very important to strike just the right balance between you and your tenants. You don’t want to be so imperious that tenants are reluctant to come to you. On the other hand, you shouldn’t get too close to them, because they may start to treat you like a best friend and ask for unreasonable concessions or favors. You can go a long way in establishing good relationships by simply communicating very well with your tenants. That’s how to be a good landlord, and maintain adequate rapport with tenants.
7. Develop proactive habits
It’s impossible to predict when or where any mishaps may occur with your rental property. For this reason, you should be proactive about resolving such issues and building time into your schedule to handle them. One great thing you can do in this area is to take some time to line up possible vendors when maintenance or repairs are needed. That will save you from fumbling around and trying to find someone with an actual problem occurs. Another good habit to have is to fully explain to tenants where all the features and amenities are, so they don’t come to you with all kinds of questions about it.