Ten Best Landlord Tips

By E-Renter Tenant Screening
Posted on July 3, 2006 under Landlord and Tenant FAQs | icon: commentBe the First to Comment

The following tips or rather simple suggestions will help you run your rental business smoothly, as well as, hassle tangle free relations with your tenants.

  1. Never rent out your place without checking up on your prospective tenant’s credit history, landlord plus other references and background. Incomplete screening and tenant selection can result in numerous problems, such as, late rent payment or no payment at all, or a tenant who has no respect for your property, or is careless of the damage he / she causes, or else you can get a tenant who allows undesirable friends to move into your property along with him / her, and worse.
  2. Ensure you get all important terms of the tenancy in writing, beginning with rental application, lease or rental agreement, notices to tenant e.g. entering tenant’s apartment for maintenance / repairs, etc., handling of tenant complaints and repairs i.e. when and how they were handled, etc., even going so far as to noting down conversations or discussions with your tenant that bear any relevance to the tenancy.
  3. A Landlord must establish a clear, fair system of collecting, holding and returning security deposits. Inspect and record the condition of the rental unit, document and if possible video-tape it before a tenant moves in. This will help prevent disputes over security deposits when he / she moves out.
  4. A good landlord always stays on top of repairs and maintenance to his / her rental unit. If the property is in a deplorable condition, the tenants will have every right to withhold rent, sue for injuries caused as a result of broken steps, etc, or even move out without notice.
  5. Make your property burglar proof as you do not want to be held liable for tenant losses. Skimping on essentials could cost much, much more in the long run.
  6. A good landlord always respects the privacy of his / her tenants and notifies them whenever he / she plans to enter their unit and will give as much notice as possible, at least a minimum of twenty-four hours, or the minimum required by state laws.
  7. Environmental hazards such as lead must be disclosed, as increasingly, tenants are holding landlords liable for health problems related from exposure to environmental poisons on the rental premises.
  8. Rental property managers must be chosen carefully, as if he / she is incompetent or commits a crime, it is the landlord who will be held financially responsible. You need to screen employees and conduct background checks, the same way you would a tenant, as well, clearly spell out the manager’s duties in order to prevent future problems.
  9. For someone in the rental business, it is important to purchase sufficient liability and other property insurance. A well-constructed insurance programme will protect your rental property from losses due to fire, storms, burglary, vandalism, personal injury and discrimination lawsuits.
  10. Resolve to resolve disputes with tenants without resorting to lawyers and litigation. Any conflict over rent, repairs, access to rental unit, noise or any other issue that does not warrant eviction, can be sorted out by meeting with the tenant and talking it over.In case, that does not work, try mediation through a neutral third party, which is often available at little or no cost from a publicly funded programme. If the dispute is over money and all attempts to resolve the conflict fail, the next resort is to go to the small claims court, a place where one can represent oneself without hiring a lawyer. When a tenant moves out without paying rent and damage to the property is over and above the security deposit amount, the small claims court can help you collect unpaid rent or obtain reimbursement for property damage caused by your tenant.

As long as you follow all the above scrupulously, you will be the best landlord in the rental business and will never have to resort to lawsuits or chase tenants for unpaid rent or damage to your property.

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