A lot of attention is given to screening and finding good tenants. However, very few landlords emphasize retaining good tenants.
Lets first define exactly what is a good tenant. A good tenant is one tenant that pays rent in full on time, and properly maintains the property with a spirit of conscientiousness.
Here are a couple of good tips to help ou keep your good tenants.
Tip 1: Provide Rent Discounts
Everyone loves a sale. Tenants are no exception. You put more money in your tenants pockets and they will like you...trust me. Give tenants discounts if they qualify and meet standards that you determine up front and in writing on your lease, and they will appreciate you for appreciating them. The types of discounts you offer can vary. For example, if a tenant pays rent on time on or before the day rent is due for 6 consecutive months, give the tenant $50 off or $100 off rent on month 7. Or, provide tenants with a $100 voucher they can use at any time during the remainder of the lease. You could give a tenant half off the rent for the 13th month if they sign another 1 year lease. You can also provide discounts on rent in August, which is back to school month if they have children, or December, because of Christmas. Another good time is July. Tenants love the possibility of having a few extra dollars in their pocket to celebrate the 4th of July. Remember, your incentives should be based on MONEY, not ancillary things that are cute and fluffy. People value monetary discounts above anything else.
Find ways to reward your good tenants with discounts around the time of the year that matters most to them or give them a voucher to choose to use for a month of their liking. A good tenant will be pleasantly astounded, and the benefit for you as a landlord down the road could be worth 10 times more than the small discount you provide for the tenant. It doesn’t take much to set you apart from most landlords and this strategy certainly can do that for you. Use this one sparingly and only with the best tenants.
Tip 2: Offer Unique and Pro Active Maintenance and Repairs
This tip will benefit you down the road because of the bonus upkeep to your property. Pro active means preventive maintenance above and beyond what you already do as a good landlord. Some examples include, clean the gutters and downspouts regularly, provide landscaping and seeding for the lawn, provide and routinely change the AC/Furnace filter, or provide and routinely change the 9 volt batteries for smoke alarms. Provide and pay for services usually reserved for the tenant. You will not violate terms of your lease if you go above and beyond.
Some more unique services may include providing a house keeping or cleaning service twice a year, have the windows washed inside and out twice a year, or clean the carpet once or twice a year. As long as you keep the relationship between your tenant and yourself on a business level, the ideas are endless. Find opportunities that are inexpensive but bring the WOW factor. The key here is doing the things that other landlords won’t do for “good tenants”. Don't be afraid to show your appreciation for your tenants. Good tenants are usually good people and respond favorably to fun unique services that show you value them. Plus, good tenants want to live where the landlord cares tremendously about the property. You want your tenant having an experience renting from you that they won’t get from other landlords. Small things make the biggest difference.
A good tenant is one of the most valuable resources you have as a landlord. You put tremendous amounts of time into finding them, so invest the right amount of time and energy into retaining them.
Every time you manage to keep a “good tenant” in your property you eliminate a vacancy, and even more significant, you eliminate the biggest landlord nightmare, THE BAD TENANT!
For more great tips, check out my book on amazon. Click on the book below.