I quickly found that in becoming a landlord, I immediately boarded the roller-coaster of different experiences. I’ve had amazing tenants and I’ve had dreadful ones. Before I started, I was bombarded by people trying to advise me against it. They threw generalizations at me about tenants not paying rent, trashing my house and calling me at 2am because they’ve clogged the toilet. In my short years as a landlord I have made a lot of mistakes and had some horrendous people rent from me. However, I’ve also had some brilliant ones and I assure you, I’ve not once unclogged a toilet at 2am! Being a good landlord is all about establishing a relationship with your tenants. If the people renting from you are used to terrible landlords they will automatically assume the same will come from you. For this reason, I have compiled a list of my 10 top tips on getting good at the landlord game:
Be ruthless with your policies
No successful business was ever run on thin air and being a landlord is exactly the same game. Tenants quickly catch onto inconsistencies and you can end up in a lot of hassle if you’ve made up rules as you go. I’ve found that the easiest way to establish a good working relationship with your tenants is by a written policy given at the start of the contract.
Invest in quality
If you invest in the quality of services you’re providing then this can only benefit both sides. This will never be a rule you can stick to at any given time and I’m by no means saying you should be replacing cream carpets every time someone has a wine spillage but the standard of upkeep on your property will only have a positive effect on the standard of tenant you attract. I find that prompt repairs and replacements when reasonable is a worthy long term investment!
Give yourself office hours
I mentioned earlier that I have not in my time unclogged a toilet at 2am in all my time as a landlord. That is a result of office hours made clear in the written policy that must be strictly abided by. If there is an emergency then tenants can leave a message and it is up to you to decide whether it is dealt with immediately or whether it can wait until the next working day.