Being a landlord isn’t for everyone, but for those who are a successful landlord, it can be a very lucrative business. Here are six things every landlord should know and put into practice:
1. Provide a Quality Property
The quality of your tenants will likely correlate with the quality of your property. Keep your rental properties repaired and up to date in terms of cabinetry, flooring, paint and appliances.
2. Create Policies – And Enforce Them
A successful landlord does not run their businesses in a fly by night manner; the best landlords have established policies and property rules. Most importantly, they enforce them. Not doing so can cause tenants to not take you seriously and potentially disrespect (or damage) your property. Be sure to enact a late fee for late rent payments and enforce this policy as needed. Always have a move-in inspection report and a move-out inspection. Keep set, reasonable office hours for yourself and enforce those boundaries of your time with tenants.
3. A Successful Landlord Must Be Organized
Keeping things organized is another key to being a successful landlord. Use a filing cabinet to keep all relevant forms neatly alphabetized and organized. Maintain an up to date list of relevant phone numbers (tenants, repair personnel, vendors, etc.) as well as documents of all your procedures.
4. When it Makes Sense, Outsource
While you may be handy enough to take care of a number of basic repair types, at some point there will be cases where you are simply not fully qualified to handle them. Don’t “go where you don’t belong” in terms of your expertise, and don’t hesitate to outsource repair jobs to qualified professionals as needed.
5. Don’t Rent to Family or Friends
This is a tough one for some landlords, but it’s a trait of the most successful landlords. It’s simply too hard to retain professionalism and enforce your policies with people when you have a personal relationship with them.
6. Screen Every Tenant
Your tenants are your bread and butter, and they can make or break your enterprise. Looking into the past rental history, criminal record and credit history of potential tenants can yield valuable information about their character and help you to decide on the ideal candidates. Make use of a quality tenant screening service to assist you with this important step.
Many property owners attempt to be successful landlords, but not all of them are. Use these six tips to help you connect with the best prospective tenants and ensure a profitable and successful business going forward.