6 Best Ways of Retaining a Tenant

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6 Best Ways of Retaining a Tenant

The best path to finding success when managing a rental property is to find long-term renters. With residents signing lease renewals regularly, you will have a steady income you can use to expand your portfolio or improve your current properties to entice tenants to stick around for a long time.

That said, searching for high-quality renters is not an easy feat. It may take a while to land them but when you do, ensure you create a habitable home and make the tenants happy. This way, you won’t be continuously spending money on marketing or maintenance fees.

But how do you find the perfect renter? Here are 6 ways you can get long-term renters in your unit:

1. Screening Potential Renters Properly 

Opting to do a screening process might require considerable time but it also protects you from problematic residents. It’s helpful to check the rental history of a candidate to make sure you don’t end up with someone who regularly skips paying the rent or violates the lease. Always verify the employment and income status to know if they’re a good fit.

If prospective renters show an excellent rental history with no record of eviction and have a steady income, they likely can be trusted to meet the rental obligations. Note that while conducting the screenings, you need to consistently abide by the provisions of the Fair Housing Act to ensure that the process is legally compliant. 

person in an orange suit looks over documents with someone in a gray suit

2. Obtain Feedback from Renters

Learn about the experiences of the tenant. Ask them how they’re doing, what works for them, and what needs improvement. Measuring the satisfaction of the renters clues you in on how to build better rental experiences to turn current renters into long-term ones.

Once you get the feedback, you can proceed with upgrades to offer more value and make the renters happy. Design anonymous surveys or speak directly with the tenants to get a better idea of their needs and concerns. The more they can be open, the better the data you get to improve your business.

Providing feedback is a win-win. The tenant can supply information that helps in you make better decisions when providing upgrades and the tenant gets a more comfortable living space. What’s more, if you invest in additional features that tenants need, they’re far more likely to extend their lease over time, making it advantageous for you. 

When a tenancy ends and the renters decide to move out, you can also view this as an important stage to learn from their rental experience. Hold an exit interview and check what they liked and what needed to be improved. 

Here are some things you ask when conducting an exit interview:

  • What are your reasons for leaving?
  • What kind of rental property are you moving to?
  • What type of incentives are you looking for to extend your stay?

This helps you tweak your rental processes, policies, and the type of updates and incentives to make for the renters stay longer.

3. Develop a Solid Landlord-Tenant Relationship 

Having a good relationship with the tenants paves the way to creating a harmonious long-term tenancy. To attain this, gain the renter’s respect and respect their privacy. Otherwise, poking into their business can be categorized as landlord harassment. Under the law, renters can end the lease early if they feel subjected to this.

A great strategy for building trust with your renters is to be reachable. Be responsive to messages and calls. Even if you’re busy with other tasks, inform them that you’ll get in touch soon. This is especially important when renters experience property emergencies since they want quick access to landlords to help them handle the situation.

As the situation is being handled be sure to provide tenants with updates. Finally, once you’ve finished addressing an issue follow up with tenants to see if they’re satisfied. 

4. Show Initiative with Property Maintenance

Regularly inspect your rental space and spot signs of property damage. You shouldn’t depend solely on the renters to report property concerns. As a landlord, you’re responsible for providing a clean and habitable living space so be conscientious and avoid delaying the repairs.

person using caulk to seal in a shower

Designate a budget for maintenance so you can easily replace items affected by normal wear and tear or get them fixed. Most of the time, renters move out when a landlord doesn’t prioritize property maintenance in a rental place. With that in mind, be attentive to even minor issues and get them repaired right away.

With little time to maintain your unit, you can always outsource this duty by hiring a property management company to keep your rental in excellent shape. With a solid network of vendors, you can even end up paying lower fees for any repairs.

5. Consider Property Renovations

Though it can be expensive upgrading your rental home, it can also lead to more benefits. Updated rentals draw in more renters, motivate current renters to renew leases, and allow you to increase the rental rate. Improving your property is an essential strategy to retain your renters for a longer period. 

What’s more, updates don’t have to equate to more expenses since some changes can be quick and affordable, such as repainting the property, adding modern lighting, or replacing cabinet hardware and bathroom furnishings.

6. Exercise Flexibility with Rental Policies

Consider being lenient with rental policies. For instance, if you don’t allow pets, it may be time to change your rules. There are a lot of rewards associated with being a pet-friendly unit. You can say yes to conditions and require pet screening, additional pet rent, and place restrictions for more protection. 

Bottom Line

Focusing on what the renter needs makes it easy to win their loyalty and retain their tenancy. Cultivating good relations, being accessible, and prioritizing maintenance are effective ways to keep them.

If you’re looking for a reliable property manager for your rental, contact JMAX Property Management today!