What should you do to keep your tenants happy?
If you’ve been in the renting your property in Malta or Gozo game for a while, you know that finding a good, reliable, clean (the list goes on) tenant is no easy task. And like any worthwhile relationship, it takes hard work to maintain. A ‘good’ tenant is not easy to find, especially one who shares your values and pays the rent on time. So here are a few ways the experts at QuickLets suggest you use to keep your tenants happy and have them onboard for the long term.
At the end of the day, a happy, satisfied tenant does not only mean your regular rent is paid without stop gaps, but also that your property is in good hands and is taken care of. Having a high turnover in tenants takes up time, money and can be tricky. You don’t want to be forking out utility, cleaning, repair and other bills while your property is left vacant while you wait to find another tenant.
Think long term and everyone will benefit.
Your tenant would appreciate transparency
As a landlord, the best way to build a solid relationship with your tenant from the get go is to be straightforward with them. Go through your lease agreement together and make sure everything is crystal clear in terms of expectations and needs. We all have a tendency to be polite in the beginning of a relationship, but this could lead to miscommunication and frustration further down the line. If you expect your tenant to clean the balcony and trim the grass – say it, agree to it before signing on the dotted line. No matter how much you just want to get it done.
Be responsive to your tenants when they reach out
Many tenants will only contact their landlord when something has gone seriously wrong like a major repair is needed urgently. Try to be available and responsive and respond quickly. You could have a template that you ask them to fill out which includes things like what the problem is, and how long it has been occurring when they are available for you to send over a contractor to repair it. Once the issue is resolved, you can ask your tenant for feedback and to send you monitoring updates of the issue.
Landlords need to implement maintenance or service requests promptly
If you receive a complaint about a leaking pipe or a broken fridge, aim to respond quickly. This will not only save further damage from occurring but will also build trust between you and your tenant. This shows you are a reliable landlord or property manager. You could schedule in regular maintenance checks with your tenant to visit your rental unit and ensure everything is well kept as there are some standard repairs you should be prepared for.
Ultimately this is the tenant’s home, if they have to deal with maintenance and repair gripes for long periods because of their landlord’s delayed response, it takes away how much they can enjoy the property as their home. Even though the issues the tenants are experiencing with your property is not your fault, it’s important that you take action to help remedy the issue and do so with in a well-mannered attitude.
This means stopping a dripping tap from becoming water leak or letting mould get out of hand. Tenants will be content if their rental property is safe and habitable.
Be welcoming and cooperative
On attitude: Try to adopt a pleasant if not friendly attitude. Being positive and having a can-do attitude will help your tenants feel comfortable and confident to approach you with issues that may otherwise spiral out of control and cause you more damage and expense in the long run.
Could you adopt a pet-friendly policy?
This is often a contentious one. Would you consider having pets in your property? Many renters nowadays have a furry friend accompanying them. Could you lay out very clear pet policies and ensure they are complied with? Many landlords are worried about pets creating noise or damaging the property. However, if you build a trusting relationship with your tenant you can be more certain that they will treat the property like their home. You can also charge a small fee for the pet to pre-empt damages or extra cleaning costs. Most tenants will happily pay for this. But you’re more likely to lose a tenant who has a pet if you do not allow it.
Respect your tenant’s privacy
This is a big one. There are two parties’ rights in balance here. The landlord’s right to enter their property, and the tenant’s right to privacy. Key to maintaining a good relationship with your tenants is ensuring you don’t just enter their property without giving them notice. Aim to give the tenant at least 24 hours in written notice before going to the property. To avoid issues and accusations, its also best to aim to enter the property while the tenants are at home. Not only does this respect the tenant’s privacy but also safeguards their belongings.
It is worth clarifying that the landlord’s right to enter the property is limited to carrying out repairs, when showing around prospective new tenants, and when an emergency occurs.
All in all
The landlord and tenant relationship does not need to be a tedious one. Ideally you set out clear boundaries and expectation from the outset, maintain a positive and helpful attitude and build trust and respect. This will make your landlord experience much smoother and ensure you have a long term tenant to occupy your property. Of course there are situations that are less than ideal. If you need a property manager to take over such tasks or simply help out, get in touch with the helpful and insightful agents at QuickLets to help lighten the load.