Updated December 6, 2021
Even though many might tell you it is very easy to rent your property, whether it's an apartment, house, or office space, it’s not quite that simple. For you to have a smooth ride, from the first contact with your tenant to the last one, you should follow these simple steps. Here are some guidelines to follow when you first start communicating with your new tenants.
1. Send the Tenant the Lease Before Your Meeting
It is of utmost importance to show your possible tenant the lease conditions and agreements. This way, neither you nor your possible tenant will waste time negotiating a contract you don’t agree upon.
According to James Belleci, landlord and Essayontime’s Legal Advisor, “It’s important that your lease contract has the needed clauses to keep you out of harm’s way. Send it to the tenant prior to your meeting. This way, [they’ll] be able to read the entire contract thoroughly and acknowledge it. ”
Apart from this, you will both be able to agree upon the clauses included in that contract. Transparent contracts lead to fruitful partnerships. You don’t want to end up with unpaid rents and the impossibility of recovering your money.
2. Discuss All of the Policies on the Lease Agreement
Well, the thing is, you both have to agree upon the policies stipulated in the lease agreement. Vague policies can lead to major disagreements that would affect both parties.
Try to focus on the following clauses:
- Rent Amount
- Lease Duration
- Payment Date
- Utilities (Who is responsible for paying them?)
These are the most important clauses in the lease contract. Other clauses, such as pre-emtions, future investments in the property, contract notice period, etc. will be decided together with the tenant.
3. Demonstrate Appliances / Heating/Cooling System
I will tell you a funny story to show you why you should show and demonstrate the appliances to your future tenant. I had a tenant a couple of years ago, mid-twenties, young, he seemed quite friendly and everything. At the time, I wasn’t doing the show and demonstrate appliances routine but, now, I’ve learned my lesson.
Two months pass and the electricity bill comes in. Lucky me (not!), it was worth two times the monthly rent. I desperately called him and I asked the guy what just happened. He was using the electric stove to heat the entire place. He told me, ”I didn’t know the apartment has a central heating system. I didn’t ask because I’m quite a shy person.”
This is why you should demonstrate your appliances!
Apart from showing your tenant that you have these systems, they should be able to handle tough situations. Every heating system is different, they have different standards, gauges, valves, etc. Your tenant should be able to operate it all by themself. You don’t want to get a 2 AM call telling you that your central heating system is not working anymore and you have to replace it.
4. Provide Emergency & Utility Contacts
You have to do this for the safety of your tenant and your property, as well. You never know when the power goes down because of a short circuit or when the water pipe gets broken. I guess, you don’t want to turn your property into a burning furnace or an Olympic pool, do you? Give your tenant contacts for the most important persons.
5. Introduce Tenants to The Neighbors / Give Contact Numbers
It is important to let your neighbors get to know your tenant. You don’t want to get a 2 AM call from your neighbor telling you that your apartment is being robbed and police are on their way. Let them know who your tenant is.
Last, but not least, introducing your tenants to your neighbors will help them befriend each other. The better your tenant feels and the healthier their personal life is, the longer they will stay.
All owners have that trusty neighbor who knows everything that goes around in the neighborhood. This neighbor might be useful for your tenant, as well. With their permission, give your tenant the neighbor’s contact information.
Apart from that, if you have trustworthy contractors, plumbers, electricians, etc., give your tenant their contact numbers. You will both benefit, your property is safe and sound and your tenant is pleased that problems pass easily.
Renting your property can be quite adventurous. You need to follow some guidelines in order to do it with ease. By keeping in mind these 7 steps, you can easily go through the rental process. Don’t forget, if you feel your tenant is not trustworthy, you should search for another one.
About the Author: Joan Selby is a content marketer, former teacher, and fancy shoe lover. A writer by day and reader by night. Find her on Twitter and Facebook.