If you have good tenants in your rental, it’s wise to keep them. Keeping tenants in place saves you the time and money of advertising — plus the expense of cleaning and maintenance, and the stress of a vacant unit.
Retain tenants with the five tips below for landlords on how to keep your best tenants.
1. Be Responsive
Tenants want to know they can rely on you when something goes wrong. Thus, if you are not responsive to their requests for maintenance, they won’t be inclined to stay. When tenants contact you, respond quickly and fix the problem as soon as you can. If it’s an issue outside your purview, offer suggestions. Keep them up to date as you make repairs, so they stay informed.
When you are helpful and proactive, tenants will appreciate your care and they’ll be more likely to renew the lease. Your responsive nature will help avoid misunderstandings that can cause resentment.
2. Offer the Right Amenities
The right amenities can sway a tenant who might be thinking of moving. Investing in your rentals also boosts property value, so you can charge more rent and earn more when you sell the property. Tenants want landscaped properties with outside seating areas, on-site laundry facilities, comfortable common areas and energy-efficient features. By spreading the cost of improvements over time, you can keep your apartment competitive within your market and retain top tenants.
3. Communicate Well
Good communication is important when it comes to keeping renters — whether you’re talking to tenants yourself or using a property manager. If you have staff working on site, train them in customer service. This benefits renters, who will enjoy being treated with courtesy, and helps you know what’s going on at your property, so you can be proactive when issues arise.
When you see your renters, be friendly. Go the extra mile by asking about their lives or by sending them a nice surprise on their birthday. Even something small, like a gift card for groceries, will be appreciated as it shows you took the time to remember.
4. Keep the Property Clean
While tenants are responsible for keeping the inside of their units clean, it’s your job to keep the common areas and exterior looking their best. Clean your property yourself or invest in landscaping and maid services so your common areas and yard look great year-round. This will help you quickly fill vacancies that arise while encouraging existing tenants to renew.
5. Incentivize Lease Renewals or Referrals
Last but not least, if you want tenants to renew their lease, give them an incentive. You might keep the rent flat if they renew or discount the rent if they sign a longer-term lease (e.g., two years). If tenants are happy, they’ll enjoy getting a bargain — and the peace of mind can be worth it for you, as well. Consider rewarding renters who refer new tenants your way, too, either with a small gift or cash incentive.
While some tenant loss is unavoidable — life circumstances change — these tips can help you reduce turnover, which lessens workload and helps you be a more profitable landlord.