What's the secret to great tenant relations?
For all the hype in the media about ‘rogue landlords’ and ‘nightmare tenants’, most landlord/tenant relationships run pretty smoothly.
If you’re new to property letting (or even if you’re not!) what are the key things you can do to create a good relationship with your tenant?
1. Craft clear and detailed Tenancy Agreements
…and make sure everyone knows what they’re signing! If you’re letting through an agent, they will already have their own form Tenancy Agreements which will contain fairly standard clauses as regards responsibilities and commitments on both sides. Make sure you have read through the agreement properly and that your tenant has too – then there’s no room for misunderstanding when it comes to issues like pets in the home, or access for inspections and repairs.
2. Know the laws
Gov.uk has a great, clear breakdown of the legal responsibilities of landlords in England and Wales, so make sure you check this out.
Although a good agency will appraise you of your legal responsibilities such as following fire safety regulations and getting your annual Gas Safety checks completed, it’s a good idea to find out exactly what’s required for yourself.
3. Schedule repairs promptly and considerately
Most tenants will avoid bothering the landlord unless they really have to, so when they do contact you to let you know something is wrong, make sure you deal with it promptly and considerately.
That means getting the repairs scheduled as soon as possible, but also being considerate to your tenants wishes. As this is their private home, would they prefer to be at home when the maintenance crew arrive? Do they have to work and, if so, can you arrange for yourself or a representative to let the workers in?
If you’re planning on looking after maintenance yourself, be realistic. Can you be available whenever needed, or is it worth finding a company who can be on call with contractors to take care of it for you?
Take care of your tenants and – nine times out of ten – they’ll take care of you.
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