The process of becoming a successful landlord involves painstaking research, preparation, and learning the best practices in the industry. When you devote time to learning the ins and outs of being a landlord and real estate laws, you can ensure that you’ll be able accomplish your goals over the long haul.
So if you’re aspiring to become a landlord, looking to enhance your skill set, or are in need of a property manager, you can use these best practices as your roadmap for success.
1. Renovate regularly to maintain your edge.
With many new, flamboyant modern housing developments in the works, almost every seasoned landlord that is well-versed in best practices has seen a sizeable number of city renters turning away from lower quality units. Thus, investing in your investment, so to speak, will certainly pay off in dividends.
As a new landlord, you’ll learn through experience that even something seemingly mundane like a fresh paint job, new flooring or carpets, and regularly swapping out some fittings here and there are some of the best practices that can substantially transform the theme, look and feel of a property to improve its aesthetics and generate more inquiries and prospects.
2. Manage your cash flow diligently.
Maintaining your financial spreadsheet as a landlord is another aspect of the industry best practices that will help pave the road to your success. Costs such as interest, upkeep, strata and council rates may need to be factored into your rental rates. If you can’t factor them in without losing your competitive edge, you can adopt strategies such as negative gearing to offset those costs.
3. Handling rental bonds.
It’s a well-known fact in the industry that bonds can be a major point of contention between landlords and tenants. Landlord best practices also include preparing for a reasonable amount of wear and tear, and situations that go beyond the norm.
As their landlord, it’s a best practice to advise your tenants to document any pre-existing defects and damage before signing any rental agreements. To help things start off on the right foot, you’ll need to double-check the document and discuss any discrepancies you find at the outset.
4. Regular maintenance of the property.
The lack of maintenance, updates and repairs is one of the main concerns tenants often raise. As a landlord, one of the best practices also entails maintaining your rental property to a decent and liveable condition. Critical repairs like ceilings caving in, broken water pipes, or dangerous electrical problems will need to be resolved within 48 hours or sooner. Thus, you’ll need to set aside a budget to quickly resolve such hazards as they come up.
Non-critical repairs like broken appliances and kitchenware are expected to be repaired or replaced within a reasonable amount of time. Fortunately, all repairs and rental property costs involving maintenance are tax deductible. Thus, it’s a landlord best practice to ensure that such repairs are done as soon as possible to retain good tenants.
5. Make time for tenant concerns.
Dedicating time to address your tenants’ concerns is the mark of a good landlord, and this also involves best practices like ensuring that they receive the property in a clean and liveable state. You’ll need to promptly address any safety issues that may arise, and make sure all of your tenants’ queries and requests are promptly fulfilled.
6. Be reachable and responsive.
If you decide to work with a property manager, it’s crucial that you select one who responds in a timely manner to tenant requests, and is capable of quickly rectifying issues. Ideally, he or she will also be skilled at diffusing conflicts among tenants. A good landlord adopts best practices to make sure open lines of communication are maintained, and makes time to remedy property issues. Using a free property management app is a great way to maintain constant and direct communication with your tenants and property manager.
Giving property managers the freedom to implement repairs without authorisation, up to specific amounts can significantly decrease the turnaround time for necessary repairs.
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