How to Make Tenants Love Your Property

By Brittany Hawes on March 24, 2018

If you’re a landlord, you want to make tenants love your property. After all, happy tenants are the tenants with the least complaints, rent paid in full and on time, and are the ones who will leave shining, online reviews for your business. As we all know, online reviews and social media posts are becoming the things that more and more Internet users are turning to when making decisions, so it’s extremely important to have a positive online presence.

Now you know for sure that the best people to have living at your property are happy tenants that are satisfied with their new living arrangements. But, as a landlord or property manager, how will you make tenants love your property? The answer is simple: be a great landlord and make sure your property is one that can have tenants fall in love with it.

If you’re an unreliable landlord with a tendency to be wishy-washy and late to respond, tenants will not respect you and will be looking to leave from your property as soon as possible (perhaps even before the lease is up, which is an issue in itself). If the property is unclean, uncared for, and full of unresolved problems, you can be sure that you’ll be getting a ton of angry e-mails and phone calls from an unsatisfied tenant who won’t be renewing their lease when it comes time to make that crucial decision.

In short, the recipe for making a tenant a happy tenant is a caring, reliable landlord and a property that really shines. You can easily make sure these things are true about yourself and your property by continuing your reading of this article.

make tenants love your property

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Becoming a Great Landlord

First, we’ll touch on how you can begin the process of becoming an excellent landlord. The number one complaint I’ve heard from friends and family members, ages ranging from 20-50 years old, is that their landlord isn’t behaving in a professional manner. After listening to their complaints, I had to conclude that these complaints were, in fact, bothersome and weren’t being dramatized or the product of a misunderstanding.

One complaint I heard was of the landlord always showing up unannounced. The property belongs to the landlord, technically, but it’s a matter of courtesy to give tenants a phone call or send an e-mail at least a day or two in advance so the tenant can be prepared for your arrival. Tenants like to be present, if possible, when someone comes over to their home. They also like to “be in the know” if a maintenance team is scheduled to arrive and work on certain parts of the house, so they can clear things out of the way, or make plans to go somewhere for the day.

If the tenant has reached out to you about a problem on the property, don’t schedule a fix without notifying the tenant first and working with them to schedule a time that works best for everyone involved. Most tenants are willing to change their schedules, if possible, to accommodate changes to their home, especially if you give them a proper heads-up.

Another complaint I heard was about landlords’ punctuality and availability. I myself had a nightmare experience at the beginning of my current lease where the upstairs bathroom sink sprung a leak and flooded the entire living room and my bathroom. My bathroom ceiling collapsed, revealing a gigantic mass of mold. My belongings were drenched in this fungal water, and I lost many of my things. Our living room carpet was ruined, doors were warped because of the water damage, and we had to throw out belongings. The leak didn’t get fixed for hours, which is why so much damage occurred. We called the office, called their emergency line, and sent in numerous maintenance requests, yet the response rate was incredibly slow. It took hours for anyone to show up. This happened during the middle of the day, not at all during a late or early time of the day.

Because of the lack of punctuality and availability, both we and our property manager had to deal with the consequences. We lost many of our things, had to deal with maintenance people showing up for weeks to fix the damages, and felt stressed during our first few months of the new school semester. Our property manager had to replace all of the carpets in the house and deal with repercussions from his supervisor.

As this story suggests, it is vital to be readily available to your tenants. Our phone calls and messages weren’t taken seriously by the business and they failed to respond in a timely manner, causing problems for everyone involved. Have more than one way for tenants to contact you. An e-mail account is necessary, as well as more than one phone number in case of an emergency. If you do receive a phone call about a perceived issue, take it seriously and respond as quickly as possible, especially if the tenants state that it’s an emergency. Tenants will appreciate your punctuality and how much you care about their happiness.

Finally, you should be approachable and considerate if you want to make tenants love your property. Many complaints I hear about landlords and property managers are about how rude some were to their tenants. Friends have told me that their landlords gossiped about them behind their backs, telling others how late they were on rent, how messy their property was, or how much they like to complain. This is clearly unprofessional and will cause hostility between you and tenants once wind of the gossip gets to the tenant. Keep all conversations civil and professional when speaking with or about your tenant. If you speak in an unprofessional way about tenants, no matter how poor of a tenant they may be, this will still reflect badly on yourself.

Make yourself approachable to tenants. Reach out from time to time and check on them. See if they’re happy or they need anything. Show them that you care about them and their well-being and they will be happy that you’re reaching out and not being an “invisible landlord”. Treat them like a good neighbor and not someone that is beneath you or a nuisance. Your relationship is then sure to be a respectable one.


Making Your Property Feel Like Home

Now that we’ve touched on how you can become a great landlord or property manager to make tenants love your property, we will move onto your property itself. It’s not enough to just have a wide variety of amenities or cheap rent. Although a low rent and many amenities might be part of the initial reason why tenants chose to rent your property in the first place, it’s going to take a lot more than that to make tenants love your property and re-sign at the end of the lease.

To make tenants love your property, tenants must feel like your property is their home, even if they are renting it. You can make tenants feel at home by being a great landlord and also making sure that your property has all of the following things taken care of BEFORE tenants move in:

  • The property has been properly cleaned
  • There are no unresolved maintenance issues from past renters
  • Property is free of potential health hazards such as bugs, pests, and mold infestations
  • Make sure any safety issues have been addressed and properly handled (broken locks on windows and doors, damaged entrances, etc.)
  • The outside of the property looks just as amazing as the inside
  • All plumbing is in working condition
  • Your property looks, smells, and feels like a fresh start! The last tenants that used to live there should only be a vague memory; not a constant reminder to your current tenants
make tenants love your property

Infographic by Brittany Hawes

All of these things will ensure a wonderful first impression to tenants upon moving in. There will be no initial friction and you can both have a good start to the lease. A happy beginning will lead to a happy ending for both of you.

One of the most important steps to get done is to make sure that everything in and outside of your rental building is tidied up. If your previous tenant caused any damages to the home, you should fix things before your next tenant moves in. Some things to check for are:

  • Holes in the walls and ceilings filled and fixed
  • Floors are swept and mopped
  • Lawn is mowed, raked, etc.
  • Roof has no leaks
  • Cracks or gaps that allow pests to get into the home are filled in
  • Clean air filters
  • Light bulbs are changed
  • Carpet is cleaned
  • Pet stains and fur has been removed
  • Any mold or mildew is removed from the premises

I cannot stress enough how important the cleanliness of your property is. I have friends who signed leases for units that were advertised as “sparkling clean” and “comfortable.” They showed up with all of their belongings only to find that their new homes were completely unlivable. One friend said she found the toilet backed up, dog feces left on the carpet, holes in the walls, and a basket filled to the brim with smelly garbage. Another friend said her entire balcony was filled with trash, the refrigerator already stocked full of old groceries, and the locks on the doors weren’t working. Both of these friends immediately canceled their leases, gave the properties negative reviews, and looked for new homes.

Keeping your property clean might seem like common sense, but it should be noted nonetheless. An unclean home can mean you lose out on a great tenant. You might even attract unsavory people and practices onto your property if your property has a reputation for being dirty.

Another measure to take before the tenants move into your property is to assure that the property is to their liking. If you make a promise to change something small that will make tenants more comfortable living in your apartment, follow through. Otherwise, you’ll come off as forgetful or uncaring.

If you really want to go the extra mile, why not give your property a bit of a makeover? If it’s an older building, you might consider dressing it up some. A fresh coat of paint in a fun color could bring new life to an old house. Consider soft colors for the bedrooms that match well with the carpets. For the outside, choose a new color that complements its surroundings. Fresh paint on the windowsills and new blinds can make any old building feel new. You could even add a walkway to the front door with solar lights lighting the way. Flowers make houses feel like homes and invite butterflies and other beautiful flower-seeking insects to the property.

If there are any old and dying trees that are dropping too many leaves in the yard, hire someone to come and remove it. Some wood-carving artists will remove trees for free as long as they get to take the lumber to use for their art, if they have the means to remove the tree. Some artists will bring in chainsaws and other tools for free to remove the tree from your property. Another thing you could do is replace old carpet and tile with something that is more up to date and will match better with your newly painted walls. New appliances will make potential tenants more ready to sign the lease. This might ease you of future headaches if the old appliances stopped working.

Do you feel ready for future tenants now? If you follow the above advice and have the drive and determination, you will be able to make tenants love your property. To recap, you need to be a landlord or property manager who is considerate, approachable, available, and capable. Make your tenants feel comfortable with you and you’ll have a sense of mutual respect. Also, your property must be capable of being loved. Make sure your property is properly cleaned and updated. A new makeover can help with that!

By Brittany Hawes

Uloop Writer
Florida State University
Hi there! My name's Britt and I'm a senior majoring in English major at Florida State University. I have these crazy, big dreams of traveling the entire world and writing novels in my spare time. I love music, food, and the Japanese culture. I plan on teaching English in Japan upon graduation from Florida State. My first YA novel, Twisted, was published by Deep Sea Publishing Company in 2014. It won a Readers' Favorite Book Award that same year. Alongside schoolwork, I'm working hard on the second book in the Twisted series as well as a number of other novels.

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