December 13

How to Rent to Long-Term Tenants

5 Tips to Build a Profitable Landlord/Tenant Relationship

Long-term tenants are a godsend. They tend to look after your property better, and you suffer fewer void periods. This means your costs are lower and your profits higher. You won’t have to work hard to replace tenants, and you have an easier life as a landlord.
Some landlords seem blessed with long-term tenants, while others are turning their property over to new tenants every few months. If this sounds like a problem you are having, I’ve got an uncomfortable truth for you. The problem is probably not the property or the location – after all, you find new tenants. The problem is more likely to be you.
Good landlords are like magnets – they attract quality tenants and those tenants stay longer. Bad landlords push quality tenants away.
In this article, you’ll learn five ways in which you can reinforce your credentials as a good landlord – a landlord the tenant never wants to leave.

1.    Be Cooperative From the Start

Choosing a new home is a big step for tenants. They must make sure that it is right for them. It’s unlikely that the best-quality tenants will make the decision to rent your property on the spot during the first viewing – unless they have an intimate knowledge of the area.
Applicants are more likely to want to go away and discuss the property, in private. Putting pressure on them to decide often works against you. Sure, you want to let the property quickly. You may have other viewings to conduct. But this will become the tenant’s home. Pressure tactics rarely work.
The best tactic is, to be honest. Let the tenant know that you are showing the property to others, but don’t use this as a scare tactic. Instead, be cooperative with the applicant that shows a keen interest but wants time to decide. Give them time, and tell them you won’t let to another tenant without giving them first refusal.
This cooperative approach will give a great impression from the start. You’ll have shown that you have the tenant’s best interests at heart and that you can be flexible – a great foundation for a long and good landlord/tenant relationship without conflict.

2.    Welcome the Tenants to Their New Home

As a landlord, you have plenty of opportunities to make great first impressions. Once the tenancy agreement has been signed and the tenancy deposit paid, your next chance to show just how good a landlord your tenants have got is the day they move in.
Providing a welcome pack is a small but incredibly inviting gesture. It shows that you care about your tenants and that you are approachable.
In the welcome pack, you should include a description of the local community. Include all the local hotspots – the places to eat and drink, for example – as well as community amenities such as sports halls, schools, shops, the local police station, and so on. Include a map with all these places marked, as well as the nearest bus stops and railway station. Don’t forget to include the address and phone number of the local doctor’s surgery.
Think about the last time you moved home. A break is needed to recharge through the day. What better way to do so than with a cup of tea or coffee and a biscuit – yet what is it that is usually buried out of sight in the boxes being moved? That’s right: tea and coffee. Provide some basic supplies to help the move-in go smoothly:

  • Tea
  • Coffee
  • Milk and sugar
  • A pack of biscuits
  • Cleaning supplies

Make sure that you include all the user manuals for all appliances in the welcome pack. Finally, don’t forget to leave a card with your contact details – including an emergency ‘out-of-hours’ number.

3.    Ensure Your Tenants Feel Safe in Their New Home

Before your tenants move in, make sure that all window, door and gate locks are secure and in working order. With modern technology, you could also provide remote security options such as connected video displays that allow the tenant to view their front door at any time and from anywhere. New smart locks enable the tenant to configure who may enter the property. Outside of the property, make sure that security lights are working.
Detail all these security measures in the welcome pack, and show that you are concerned about the tenants’ safety in their new home.

4.    Make the Property Maintenance Free

Okay, so we know that there isn’t such a thing as a maintenance-free property, but you should aim to make your tenants’ home as close to it as possible. You do this by ensuring that your tenant understands their responsibilities and when to contact you about repair and maintenance needs – which is always sooner rather than later.
You’ll need to provide a way that makes it easy for tenants to report repair issues (we provide a repair reporting service for this) and make sure that you respond to reports quickly. Keep the tenant informed about what is going on, and have the repair done in a timely fashion, always – even if you are on a beach, halfway across the world, when the repair issue is reported.

5.    Respect the Tenant’s Privacy

You cannot enter your property without permission – it is the tenant’s home, and they are entitled to their privacy. Except in the case of an emergency, it is illegal for you – or any of your representatives – to cross the property’s threshold unless you are invited to do so.
If you do plan to visit or make a property inspection, make sure that you give plenty of warning. A minimum of 24 hours is required by law, but the earlier warning is better. Even if you have pre-agreed a timetable of property inspections, always contact the tenant a day or two before turning up at the property. Be prepared to reschedule if it is inconvenient for the tenant – and never break your appointment with the tenant.

Build Good Relationships to Develop Long-Term Tenants

Renters want to rent a good, well-maintained property in a good location. But if their relationship with you as the landlord is poor, they are unlikely to become the long-term tenants that will boost your rental profits.
By following the five tips in this article, you’ll start on the right foot and set the foundation for a good, long-lasting relationship with your tenants that will pay real dividends. Good landlord/tenant relationships must be worked on. You cannot take your foot off the brake. Our landlord clients do this effortlessly – because we develop and maintain those important relationships. To learn how effortless property management could benefit you, contact Ezytrac today at +44 0 1522 503 717.
Live with passion
Brett Alegre-Wood


long term tenants

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