Property management requires dealing with a variety of challenges. Every day can bring something new and unexpected to the table. And many issues demand a quick reaction because tenants have to live in a safe, clean, and maintained property.
Efficient property management juggles all the daily tasks without compromising on quality.
In this article, we share 10 useful property management tips. Following these recommendations will cut your stress, save time, and allow you to gain more control over the management process.
1. Understand relevant laws and regulations
Make sure to study your state’s landlord-tenant laws. You have to comply with these rules at all times. Plus, keep an eye on any additional regulations that govern how you can conduct your rental investment business.
All the following aspects of management need to reflect the legal requirements:
- Tenant evictions
- Collection of security deposits
- Screening procedures
- Consequences of breaking a lease
- Late payment fees
- Drafting lease agreements
These are just some of the property management matters that have legal ramifications. Seek qualified advice whenever you are unsure about a legal question.
2. Draft a financial plan
Use all the financial data you have at hand to plan for the future. You want to generate consistent revenue together with the potential to increase your return on investment along the way.
When picking a new investment property, use online data to predict the revenue stream. The main variables you should follow include location, size, amenities, and level of luxury of the property.
3. Enforce the rules in your lease agreement
Nothing feeds an unhealthy relationship with your tenant quicker than a failure to enforce the rules. It’s important to follow up on every clause in your rental agreement. Otherwise, the tenants may start to take advantage of your relaxed attitude.
Making exceptions is an approach that won’t serve the goal of growing your investment.
4. Ask for renters insurance
Does your state allow mandatory renters insurance clauses in lease agreements? If yes, you should require renters insurance from all your tenants. You can avoid hefty lawsuits by adding a clause about compulsory insurance. On average, the annual expense for a renter won’t be high.
5. Prepare written rental agreements
Oral agreements may be legal in your area, but they are highly ineffective compared to written rental agreements. Sometimes it’s impossible to prove that your tenant agreed to a particular clause without a signed document.
When drafting a rental agreement, you should make sure that all the rules comply with state laws. Not adhering to landlord-tenant laws could result in costly legal consequences.
6. Screen prospective tenants
Tenant screening is a crucial task in property management. Checking the background of your applicants allows you to weed out high-risk tenants. For example, you wouldn’t want a renter who has no regular income or has been charged with multiple accounts of property destruction.
Among other screening methods, you should contact their previous landlords and verify their current employment status. Interviewing the person is another step that shouldn’t be missed. Make sure to always comply with the legal principles laid out in the Federal Fair Housing Act.
7. Consider hiring a professional property manager
Professional property management is a great option for landlords new to the business. Hiring a property manager offers substantial value to experienced landlords as well. Not everyone has enough time to deal with all the unexpected demands that come up on a regular basis.
8. Minimize tenant turnover
Try reducing your tenant turnover rate. Empty rental units result in expenses while generating zero income. A high tenant turnover rate is one of the biggest issues that landlords have to deal with.
There are two main approaches to cutting vacancies:
- When you already face empty rental units, it’s time to step up your advertising and marketing game. Use both offline and online marketing methods. Find ways to benefit from word of mouth advertising.
- Give your renters plenty of reasons to stay for longer. Be proactive when dealing with maintenance issues and respond promptly. Offer incentives for lease extensions.
9. Utilize online marketing resources
You can find plenty of practical marketing channels online. Use popular rental listing sites and upload high-quality visual material, such as professional photos and video walk-throughs.
Social media opens another avenue that is worth considering. You can use local discussion groups, paid highly targeted marketing, and posts with the potential for going viral.
10. Conduct proper maintenance
Quick responses to emergency repair and maintenance requests are important. But it’s also critical to delivering regular maintenance on time.
- Timely maintenance decreases vacancies because your tenants are happier and experience a higher quality of life.
- As a landlord, you are legally required to keep the rental property habitable. Serious delays in maintenance and repairs may cause habitability and legal issues.
- Regular maintenance preserves the value of your investment.