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Good Tenants: What To Look For And How To Find And Keep Them

Mark Taylor , Principal/Licensee in Charge | 27 May 2020

Good tenants are essential to a positive rental experience for landlords, but how do you know if you have found one? And more importantly, if you have, how do you keep them?

Good tenants help maintain the value of your investment property and give you peace of mind. In this tough COVID-19 market, it is paramount to identify and secure good, quality tenants and keep them in your investment property.

What To Look For 

#1 They Pay Rent On Time: Paying rent on time is one of the most fundamental aspects of any tenancy and a key feature of the rental agreements your tenants will sign upon accepting the lease. A good tenant will consistently pay rent on time, which ensures your investment property continues to deliver an ongoing income stream to you, the landlord.

However, prompt payment isn’t always a given if you have an unreliable tenant. Thorough reviews of rental applications by experienced property managers are essential when finding new tenants to ensure there’s no history of late payment with their previous rentals, as well as reference checks that confirm their employment status and financial ability to meet the rent requirements. 

#2 They Care For The House As Though It Was Their Own: A tenant that cares about your property is instrumental when it comes to maintaining the value of your investment and keeping your mind at ease. As well as not causing damage to the premises, a good tenant will keep the property clean, be respectful of neighbours and let property managers know when problems arise. They tell you about maintenance issues and improvements.

Good tenants are also invaluable when it comes to identifying areas for improvement, as they have first-hand experience living in the property and a desire to make it better. These changes, like adding air-conditioning, addressing a damp problem, installing a dishwasher or re-painting walls, not only add value to the property, but also increase the chances of the tenant extending their lease.

#3 They Stay Long-Term: Keeping a tenant in your property long-term is ideal, as it saves you time and money trying to replace them if they leave. The way to achieve this is by looking after your tenant – the happier they are in your property, the less likely they are to want to move on. Addressing issues promptly, communicating regularly with tenants and building good relationships are pivotal to a long tenancy.

#4 They’re Easy To Communicate With: It is important that your property manager has a philosophy that centres on pro-activity and excellent communication, because we know it forms the basis for strong relationships and trust. 

Encouraging tenants to raise any issues with you also relies on developing positive relationships and fostering open communication. A tenant that meets you halfway in communication is a great asset in ensuring your property is well cared for and allows you to address any maintenance issues and improvements quickly. 

So How Do You Find And Keep A Good Tenant?

#1 Engage An Experienced Property Manager: A great property manager is the first step in finding a good tenant for your property. Experienced property managers know what to look for in prospective tenant applications to set the tenancy up for success, as well as understanding how to manage relationships on an ongoing basis to make the tenancy a positive one for tenants and landlords alike.

#2 Focus On The Presentation Of Your Investment Property: A well-presented property will attract a better tenant, so consider if there are any improvements you need to make before listing the property for rent. This might be as simple as tidying gardens or replacing shabby flyscreens, or a new feature that will also command their attention including new paint, carpet, air-conditioning or a dishwasher.

#3 Market And Advertise Your Property Professionally: Good marketing is often overlooked by property managements but we know that advertising a rental is just as important as advertising a sale. In a tough market, you need your property to stand out and be priced competitively to avoid extended vacancies.

How you market and advertise your property can play a big role in the number and quality of potential tenants who will want to inspect and subsequently apply for your property. Professional photography of the exterior and all rooms, great copywriting describing the best features and quality signage all help make your property more appealing to good potential tenants.

Choosing the right channel to advertise, such as premium placements on popular real estate websites, also contributes to the applicant pool by increasing the chances good tenants will see your advertisement.

#4 Complete Application And Reference Checks: Completing reference checks on prospective tenants is an essential part of finding reliable tenants and giving you peace of mind. At a minimum, your property manager should confirm a tenant's employment status and rental history, including if the bond has been returned in full, either by by calling references or using professional databases. They should also review the application in details to look for any inconsistencies or unexplained gaps in rental history.

Like To Learn More?

To find your next quality tenant, get in touch with our team of specialists today. 

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