Being a landlord can be a pretty stressful experience. At Venture, we've always said that a good relationship between landlord and tenant is the key to a better all round letting experience. Here are our top tips to ensure your relationship with your tenant runs smoothly ensuring that all parties are happy with the tenancy more times than they are not:
1. Employ the right Agent. Look at the locality, does the agent you have in mind have a good presence in the area? Go in and talk to them and see how they work. We always encourage our landlords to call in for a coffee so that we can show them how we do various tasks and so we can answer any questions. This experience alone should have a massive impact on whether you feel comfortable dealing with them. Another tip is to know where their office is. Ask yourself, is it easy to get to? what is the footfall like? Do they outsource their property management to a 'call centre'? Do your research, after all you are trusting them with one of greatest assets.
2. Agree to necessary repairs quickly. Nothing niggles a tenant more than repairs that never seem to be completed. It's one of the main reasons why a tenant ends up giving notice. Get repairs looked at quickly and sorted.
3. Set the rent at a fair price. Ok, so everyone wants the best price they can get but offering the property at a fair price, means that the tenant is likely to stay longer and you'll get less voids. Voids can strip profit quicker than anything else. Tenants don't want to leave fair landlords who keep rents affordable and are quick to repair any issues.
4. Forget family and friends. It may seem harsh but moving in a relative or friend rarely works out. We've seen it countless times. Renting your property is a business transaction and should be treated as such, family and friends and tenants blur the lines and often ask for 'favours' in realtion to rent payments etc.... a road worth avoiding
5. Check the property over before marketing it. Would you move into a house with dirty carpets and a dirty oven? a tenant doesn't want to either. Always look critically at your property before it goes to market. If there is a garden, make sure the grass is cut. If a wall looks like it needs a coat of paint, it probably does. If you don't do this, it migfht look like you don't care too much about your property. Not a good signal to send out to a new tenant about to move in.
6. Reward good tenants. Ever thought of reducing the rent slightly for a good tenant that always pays on time and you never hear from? Might seem radical but we've experienced this several times resulting in a long tenancy with no void periods. Does the same tenant want a new kitchen? Offer this if they have been loyal and paid their rent on time in return for them signing a 12 or 18 month lease. After all a new kitchen will only enhance the propertythe next time it's on the market