A good landlord-tenant relationship takes some effort from both parties, and as a landlord, it all starts with finding the right tenants – those that you can have a professional and trusting relationship with. In order to find them, I post my properties on ApartmentLove.com. Their professional and expertly managed listings make the process easy from start to finish.
Welcome your tenants
Welcome new tenants the same way you would welcome guests into your home. A small gift can go a long way in getting your new landlord and tenant relationship off on the right foot.
In a previous blog post, I said that in all my rentals I welcome new tenants with a small gift pack as a way to start the new relationship. I usually include a welcome card, a bottle of wine and flowers. It makes a big impact and I’ll tell you how I know this; I had a tenant living in one of my properties for 15 years who recently moved out, and guess what was left for me as a parting gift? The same bottle of wine I gave him 15 years ago. It goes to show you that he never forgot and my gesture was appreciated.
Giving back doesn’t start and stop with that welcome gift- it continues throughout your landlord-tenant relationship. I always make an effort during the big holidays, my tenants’ birthdays and throughout the rest of the year by making sure my rental property is in perfect condition at all times.
Holidays are all about giving, right? Christmas is the big one, obviously, but don’t forget about all the others. A small gesture on Thanksgiving, Easter, or even Valentine’s Day can be a great way to make your tenant feel appreciated and foster a good relationship. And I’m not talking about a big investment. A bottle of wine is great, but so is a little box of chocolates or a $10 gift card. You don’t have to spend a lot to make someone feel good. It’s all about the gesture.
Everyone loves getting a little extra attention on their birthday. I know I do! So I highly recommend keeping a record of your tenant’s birthday(s) so that you can send a small gesture on the big day. A gift card in a small amount is a great idea, but even a free e-card will do the trick. The point is to let them know you care and that you remembered their important day.
Being a great landlord
It’s not just about giving gifts to your tenants, it’s also about giving back to your property. If your tenant calls you and says, “my dishwasher is broken”, you need to fix the problem swiftly and properly. You need to be the type of landlord that is attentive and doesn’t let any issue linger. It shows your tenants that you care about their happiness and that you value the property. And don’t forget to make a follow-up call or send an email a few days after the problem has been fixed to make sure everything is running smoothly.
All good things must come to an end eventually, and if your tenant needs to move on, a good reference from you can help them secure new housing. It’s an easy way for you to give back and thank them for being a good tenant. It’s also possible they may ask you for a reference for a new employer or some other situation. Unless you have a good reason not to, give them the reference and help them out.