Posted on Dec 07, 2017
Welcoming new tenants is an easy way to start the landlord/tenant relationship off on the right foot. It communicates that new tenants are appreciated, cared for and welcome in your rental; and generates goodwill that can smooth over friction down the road. With that in mind, how can you make new tenants feel welcome?
The best way to welcome new tenants to their apartment is to clean the unit thoroughly before they move in. A dirty rental can create a negative impression; tenants may even call you and demand it be cleaned.
Clean the property yourself or hire professional cleaners — even if the previous tenants cleaned at move-out. Investing in deep cleaning shows tenants your expectations for property management. They may be more likely to keep the unit clean or notify you of any problems when it’s clear you care about upkeep.
Provide new renters with a list of practical information. If there is parking on site, where is it? Does parking cost extra? If tenants have access to basement storage or on-site laundry, where is that? What are the local utilities so renters can have them transferred in their names?
Make sure tenants have your up-to-date contact information in case there’s an emergency.
Think generally, as well: Where are the nearest hospitals? What is the non-emergency police number? What does a new tenant need to know about the area?
On move-in day, show up and greet new tenants personally. A simple hello and a handshake can be a thoughtful gesture on your part.
Tenant Welcome Package Ideas
You can put together a welcome package for new tenants on any budget, so there’s no need to spend a lot of money on this gesture. New tenants will have everything packed, so practical welcome basket ideas include essentials that will make them more comfortable as they adjust. Items might include:
- Dish soap and kitchen sponge
- Paper towels
- Toilet paper
- Hand soap
- Bottled water, energy drinks or another beverage
- Wine or beer for tenants 21 and older
- Small selection of healthy snacks
- Age-appropriate toys, if there are children in the rental
With these thoughtful items, your tenants can take care of their basic needs without rummaging through boxes looking for bathroom supplies.
To personalize the basket to your area, think about what’s unique and exciting in the neighborhood. If there’s a cute coffee shop, consider picking them up a pound of coffee and a few mugs. Alternately, get new tenants a gift certificate for a nominal amount ($10, for example).
Help your tenants explore the area by gathering takeout menus from local restaurants. It’s worth visiting these restaurants yourselves and asking if they have coupons for new residents; you may be able to save the renters some money.
Welcoming new tenants helps them acclimate. It also shows that you’re responsive and responsible as a landlord. Tenants will be more accountable when they know you’re involved with the property management because you’ve met them, left them relevant neighborhood information, and given them a welcome basket. Since happier tenants are more likely to keep renting from you, this helps ensure steady income from your properties.
For more helpful information on creating a welcoming atmosphere for tenants, join the American Apartment Owners Association. Members receive landlord tips as well as discounts at home improvement stores and on landlord/tenant forms, plus several other perks.