Jan 19 2017

Ways to avoid turnover in a rental business

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If you are a landlord, then you know that turnover is an expensive issue, one which should be avoided as much as possible.  Of course, renters come and go over time, but there are ways you can minimize the risk or frequency of it happening.  Below are ways to avoid turnover in your rental business.

Keep in Touch With Your Tenants

One of the best ways to prevent turnover is to keep in touch with your tenants.  Just like a good manager at a restaurant, a good landlord will check in with tenants to make sure they are enjoying their time and if they need assistance with anything.  When was the last time you went to a restaurant and the restaurant manager stopped by?  You may remember him or her wanting to know if you loved the food, the wine, and perhaps you need more napkins.  They see what you need before you need it, and offer their help.  

Likewise, a landlord should send a short and sweet email every so often to make sure they are happy.  Not all tenants will be outspoken about what they need.  On the other hand, it is possible that your tenant has a small list of things they need fixed or complaints about the neighbors, but they have never made the time to bring it up to you.  Make sure you let them know that you are available if they need assistance.  Your hospitality will keep them happy and make an impression that you care about their well-being.  You never know—your involvement can be the difference between them leaving or staying when the lease ends.

Keep up with Maintenance

If you are aware of any maintenance issues, be prompt about fixing them.  Be aware of any preexisting conditions of your rental that may need frequent inspection, and let your tenants know if you need to check on the state of that condition.  Be sure that your tenant is aware if this is a reality of the property, and allow them ample notice when you need to stop by.  

In addition, if your tenant notifies you of a broken fixture or appliance, make sure you repair it quickly.  It may be wise to have a network of plumbers, carpet cleaners, installers, and repair people available so that you can take care of these issues immediately.  Alternatively, you may be able to make repairs yourself.  If this is the case, you still need to be timely and invest appropriately so that your tenants know you care about their experience.

Update Amenities

Near the end of the lease, you may want to update an amenity such as windows.  Tell this to your tenants and they may be encouraged to stay.  Some tenants are always looking for the next best thing at the end of their leases, so it is best to let them know that you are always trying to improve the grounds, even in a small way.  Depending on the upgrade or renovation you are proposing, you may also have the opportunity to raise the rent to make up for costs.  This is something to consider when researching rent price and updating as needed to make your rental competitive.

Ask Questions to Potential Candidates

Before the candidates even move in, you should ask them questions when they visit the property for a showing.  If they are serious about applying, that may be the perfect time to get to know their future intentions before they turn in their papers.  Find out why they are moving and how quickly they want to move in.  Chances are that if they are looking to move quickly, they may have run into trouble.  It is possible they were evicted or that they foreclosed on a home.  

While this is not always grounds to reject a tenant, it is something to consider when looking for a long-term tenant.  While there are no guarantees, you will get a sense as to the reliability of your tenants fulfilling the lease.  Be confident in your decision after you run a credit check, check their criminal history, and any indication of eviction.  

Keeping tenants is easy with these simple rules. When you have a great tenant, make sure they stay by offering competitive rent prices, providing great service, and making your property enticing.

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Hey! I'm Kacie, wife and mother of 3. I write about my family's finance: how we save money, improve our spending, and plan for the future.

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