When a landlord lets a property, they entrust the lettings agent and the tenants with a possession worth many thousands of pounds. Every so often, you hear horror stories of tenants causing untold damage to the house or flat they rent, but it can be avoided. Read on to find out how to encourage tenants to look after a property.
Before They Sign Up
Get Tenant References
Prevention is always better than cure, and landlords can take steps to help themselves before the tenants move in. They must get references on potential renters. This doesn’t guarantee they’ll treat the property with care, but it will weed out some who won’t.
Inventory with Photographs
Putting together a thorough inventory with photographs is important. It shows the landlord is serious about looking after the place and should persuade the tenant to do so too. They know there is documented evidence of the contents and their condition from before the moving dates.
Make the Property Shine
If tenants move into a grimy pad and have to spend most of their first weekend in the place cleaning, that sets a bad example. Why should they care for the property if the landlord clearly doesn’t?
Call in the professional cleaners to blitz the building before the tenants arrive, and the landlord sets the standard. As humans, we often buy into the ‘leave it as you found it’ mentality, so this is important.
Tell the Tenants What the Landlord Expects
If a landlord wants a tenant to look after a property, surely, they should tell them that. In the tenancy agreement, make it explicit that it is the renter’s job to keep it clean and tidy.
The tenant should know they are responsible for keeping the windows clean, maintaining the garden, reporting any potentially damaging issues in a timely manner and so on.
Signing a legal document that states their duties in black and white is a decent step towards discovering how to encourage tenants to look after a property.
During the Tenancy
As with the professional cleaning, a landlord or lettings agency that fixes issues quickly sends a powerful psychological message to a tenant. If they believe the landlord cares enough to sort out the problems, they are more likely to care too.
It’s also a matter of respect. The landlord respects the tenant’s comfort, the tenant repays the respect by also caring for the property.
Book in Regular Inspections
If prompt action and mutual respect is the carrot, regular inspections are the stick. A tenant is more likely to keep a property in a better state if they know someone is checking up than if they don’t hear from the landlord or agent for the entire length of the tenancy.
This is great for peace of mind too. The landlord gains regular reports and can nip any potential problems in the bud.
Compromise At Least a Little
A landlord needs to compromise at least a little to ensure a healthy relationship with tenants. The owner may not be thrilled to hear a tenant wants to decorate but avoiding a flat “no” goes a long way to keeping the tenant onside.
Is there one room they could paint? Can the landlord produce a limited list of acceptable colours? Could tenant and landlord work together to design something they both like?
The house is the landlord’s property but, for the length of the agreement, it is the tenant’s home. Any renter who feels like they are at home is more likely to respect the building. If a little paint job helps them feel as if the house really is theirs, that might be worth allowing.
How to Encourage Tenants to Look After a Property - Next Steps
Keeping tenant’s happy means going the extra mile. It takes effort but is worth it when they return the property in great condition. Executive Property Management Solutions can take on as many of these tasks as you wish, in order to let you concentrate on bringing in business.
We offer two main property management packages, but we can tailor our services to fit your needs as well. Find out more about outsourcing your management tasks to Executive Property Management Solutions on the website and contact us today using the box below.