When having a successful rental business, it’s crucial to find the right tenants. Good tenants always pay rent on time. They also take the initiative to contact you when necessary and are considerate in the treatment of your property. When you find a good tenant, it’s best to retain them long-term.
What are the benefits of having long-term tenants?
Unit turnover and property maintenance expenses are lower
Time and money saved by not needing ads and prospective tenant screenings
Peace of mind in knowing your tenant for quite some time
Best of all, you're able to enjoy a regular rental income
High unit turnover is very costly for landlords. Most of the time, tenants move because they find a more affordable property in the same location. Others relocate because of work requirements, or when they find good schools for their kids elsewhere. The tenant's reasons are often beyond the landlord's control.
But there are still some things you can do to find and retain good tenants. In this article, you will learn useful tips on how to achieve this.
How to Attract Long-Term Tenants
1. Offer a Reasonable Rental Price
Finding the best rental deal is often the priority for tenants. Properties largely being advertised online mean that many options are accessible to them. As such, competition is high to find tenants for properties. Setting your rental property at a reasonable price will attract more prospective tenants than nearby competitors.
2. Make a Good First Impression with Tenants
First impressions are vital in finding a long-term tenant. To make a good impression, treat all potential tenants with respect. Being polite and courteous makes a big difference. By doing this, you’ll show your tenant that you're professional and approachable.
3. Keep the Property in Top Condition
Potential tenants are looking for a well-maintained property that they can call home. By keeping your property in top condition, you'll be able to attract more tenants. You don't have to spend a huge amount to improve your property's look either. There are a few simple things you can do to make your property more attractive:
Repaint your property with attractive colors
Invest in a new kitchen countertop and floorings
Have your property professionally cleaned
Update the cabinets and other built-in furniture
Include essential appliances like washer and dryer
4. Provide Essential Amenities
By researching trends in amenities most tenants want, you’ll find the best options to make your rental property appealing. You don’t need to install all of them, but it will help if you provide some amenities that tenants prioritized. The type of amenities often depends on the age and lifestyle of the tenant. For example, most tenants look for a property with high-speed internet. They also want a unit with soundproof walls, appliances, large walk-in closet, and a balcony.
5. Screen Potential Tenants
It’s essential to know if prospective tenants plan to stay long-term when screening them. Asking lifestyle questions when you interview potential tenants can help determine this. For example, tenants with kids tend to lease long-term more often than single tenants.
How to Retain Long-Term Tenants
Once you’ve found a good tenant, you need to put in the effort to retain them long-term. You can follow these tips to best achieve that:
1. Regularly Upgrade your Property
All properties show signs of wear and tear after some time. One way to upgrade your property is by adding fresh paint. You can also consider replacing the backyard’s old fences. If you regularly upgrade your property, your tenants will be appreciative. Tenants who feel looked after will be encouraged to stay long-term.
2. Allow Your Tenant to Make Changes to the Property
Allowing tenants to customize the property’s interior will make them much happier. These changes don’t have to be major. You can allow them to make alterations as long as it won’t cause long-term property damage. For example, you can let your tenants change wallpapers or create a small outdoor garden. If they're allowed to personalize the property, they will be encouraged to stay long-term.
3. Encourage Tenants to Have Extended Lease Terms
Providing a reduced rate can encourage tenants to sign a long-term lease. For example, if your tenant renews yearly, you can ask them to extend it to two years at a lower rate. It's a win-win situation for you and your tenant. The reduced rate can be an incentive for them while you receive a guaranteed rental income.
4. Promptly Respond to Requests
Responding promptly to your tenants’ property maintenance requests encourages tenants to stay long-term. Aim to respond to your tenant's requests within one business day. However, there are some requests that you need to address immediately. Examples of these requests are broken bathroom fixtures or busted electrical wiring. Your tenant will feel valued if you’re quick to take care of them.
5. Explain the Contract to Your Tenant
Meet with your new tenant and go over the contract together. The tenant will appreciate you answering their questions quickly, should they have any. By doing this, you can also verify that the tenant understands the leasing terms and conditions. Whenever you make changes to the contract, you should discuss it with your tenant in person.
6. Take the Initiative in Lease Renewals
Remind your tenant at least 90 days in advance when their lease contract is about to end. If you do this, you will know your tenant’s plans and listen to concerns they may have. It would also give you enough time to find a new tenant if they decide to move out.
7. Ensure the Safety of Your Tenant
Tenants prioritize finding a property that is secure. They won't stay in a place where they don't feel safe. Because of this, you need to make your tenant's safety your main priority. For example, you can change locks, install security cameras and provide outdoor lighting.
Taking action will help you to attract and retain long-term tenants. Ultimately, having long-term tenants provide many benefits such as being able to save on costs and have regular rental income.