Retaining tenants is good for business, and it’s good for your property. When you can keep a resident in place and renew a lease agreement, you’re avoiding vacancy and turnover costs. You’re also ensuring there’s more stability and continuity for your property.
If you have a good tenant in place, we recommend you work extra hard to keep them there. Here are five simple tips on how to retain your residents.
1. Share Expectations with Tenants During Move-In
Your plans for tenant retention begin before those tenants even move into your property.
Think about the move-in process and what you can do to make it easier for your new residents. Moving is stressful. There are dozens of details to manage. When you are clear about your move-in procedures, tenants feel like they understand what will happen and when it will happen.
Make sure you discuss your expectations. Go over the lease agreement in detail and answer any questions. When tenants understand what they’re responsible for and what you expect from them, they’ll feel less unsure of themselves as they settle in and begin living in their new home. They also won’t hesitate to get in touch with you if there’s any confusion.
Be an open and transparent communicator. Listen actively. Be responsive and available. This will get your relationship off to an excellent start, and good relationships lead to better retention.
2. Provide a Positive Rental Experience in Roseville
Make it difficult for tenants to move! The best thing you can do to keep good tenants is to provide a pleasant and stress-free rental experience. You can do this in a number of ways:
- Invest in a good relationship. This starts with communication.
- Check in once in a while. Tenants shouldn’t hear from you only when something’s wrong, like rent is late or the water needs to be shut off for repairs.
- Provide thoughtful cards and gifts on birthdays and holidays.
- Share resources tenants may find helpful, such as local school information or new restaurant openings in the area.
You should consider conducting routine surveys to find out what’s going well for your tenants and what they wish to see improved. This will give you ideas for how to keep those tenants renewing their lease agreements year after year.
3. Make Sure You’re Making Maintenance a Priority
An extremely important part of retaining tenants is being responsive when it comes to maintenance. A lot of landlords don’t realize just how important it is to respond to maintenance requests right away – even if they’re minor. Tenants will notice what you do and what you don’t do. They’ll pay attention to how quickly you take care of the problems for them.
Emergencies will always require your immediate attention in order to keep the property safe and habitable, but if you want to make a good impression on your residents, you’ll treat routine repair requests with a sense of urgency as well.
When you respond quickly to maintenance needs, tenants feel like you’re taking their needs seriously and that you care about their comfort and happiness. One of the main reasons that tenants leave rental properties is because repairs were not taken care of in a timely manner. Don’t lose tenants this way; make the repairs quickly. Not only does it retain tenants, it also protects the condition of your investment.
Not only do you want to respond quickly, you want to make sure you’re working with a great team of vendors and contractors who will respect your tenants and their home.
4. Accept Online Rental Payments
Making life easier is a great way to retain residents.
Tenants today are looking for ease and convenience. They are busy. They are pursuing their work and their studies and their passions. They don’t want to be hindered from living their best lives.
One way to provide that convenience they’re looking for and to ensure your rent comes in on time is by providing an online payment platform so your residents can easily and securely pay rent online. We have a whole portal that our tenants use, and that’s one of the reasons it’s such a good idea to work with Roseville property managers.
While independent landlords don’t have access to the same resources that property managers have, you can still figure out a way to collect online or digital rental payments. You can download an online banking and payment platform. You can use one of the various payment apps that are available.
5. Make Strategic and Reasonable Rental Increases
When you rent out a property that’s bound by California’s rent control laws, you’re already going to be careful with the amount that you raise the rent.
Be careful even if you’re exempt from rent control.
Raising the rent every year when the lease renews is typical, and most tenants in Roseville will expect a slight increase. Right now, with the rental market so hot, rents are higher than they’ve been in many years. This means you should feel absolutely entitled to raise your rent when it’s time to renew the lease with your residents. However, keep the amount reasonable and market-driven.
When you have great tenants in place who pay rent on time every month and cause little trouble, you want to retain those tenants. These are the residents you’re hoping to renew year after year, so implement a small increase that matches inflation and the market rental values. You don’t want to be at the high end of what similar properties are renting for. Keeping a good resident in place is more valuable than a couple of extra dollars in rent every month.
Your tenants will take a look at the market and see what else is out there. We recommend that you raise your rent enough to cover your higher expenses, but leave the rental value just below market rents. This will show residents they’re getting a value with you, and they’ll be more likely to stay.
These are just five ways to retain tenants. We can tell you five more. Contact our team at Action Properties to hear more.