- March 9, 2018
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If you’ve recently invested in multifamily property, you have probably already begun to notice what makes a good tenant as opposed to a bad tenant. Being a landlord is tough enough as it is. Make it easier on yourself by finding quality tenants that you are happy to rent to over and over again. Creating positive relationships with your tenants will help to ensure that your property remains occupied for greater lengths of time by people who meet and exceed your expectations as a landlord. Following some simple guidelines will make your job easier.
Set Your Criteria
The first component to successfully leasing units within your multifamily property is to get clear on who your ideal tenant is. What sort of income bracket will your ideal tenant fall into? What is your stance on pets and smoking in your units? Will you be running criminal background checks on your applicants? Are your prospective tenants friendly, reasonable, communicative, and punctual? Understanding your expectations as a landlord will help you to express those expectations to any potential clients, setting a strong foundation for a positive experience on both ends.
Once you are familiar with your ideal client, it’s time to begin advertising your multifamily property. Find local bulletins, newspapers, rental websites, and social media that are likely to attract these types of renters. Working with a realtor can help to offer some clarity and direction when it comes to listing your property.
Screen Your Applicants Fully
Once your multifamily property is listed, you’ll begin the process of interviewing applicants. Avoid potential setbacks later down the line by implementing a thorough screening process. Let applicants know that they will be asked to submit to a credit check and criminal background check, and that their reported income will be verified. If an applicant is hesitant to agree to these terms, it’s oftentimes a quick, red flag indicating that they may not be your ideal tenant.
Obey Laws and Guidelines
In your new role managing a multifamily property, you will need to become familiar with associated rules and regulations. The Federal Fair Housing Act will offer you a clearer vision of the guidelines landlords are required to follow by the federal government. This act was put into place to help avoid discrimination against particular genres of people in relation to their ability to secure housing. It is based upon an applicant’s race, sex, national origin, religion, familial status, or any disabilities they may have. In addition to following these standards, landlords will need to understand the local markets housing codes and any other applicable laws.
Verify Rental History
When it comes to securing tenants for your multifamily property, being well-informed is imperative. Check your prospective tenant’s rental history by following up with prior landlords. Pay attention to how long they have stayed at prior residences, whether or not they were on-time with their monthly rental payments, past evictions, and how many complaints they received and/or submitted.
Meet Them Personally
If you want to be an effective landlord in your multifamily property, you will want to know who you are renting to. Anybody can make themselves appear like the ideal tenant on paper, but a face to face meeting can help to you see more clearly. If a prospective tenant is late, unprepared, or a no-show, you may want to consider leasing the unit to another applicant with seemingly greater interest. If an applicant is outright rude or refuses to the parameters of the application process, this too could be an indication of problems to come.
Be a Good Landlord
At the end of the day, your example will be the thing to draw in the right tenant’s for your multifamily property. Being an attentive landlord will show your tenant’s that the property means something to you, and encourage them to treat it with the same respect. Continue to attract quality tenants by being prompt in your response to and rectification of problems, whether those are neighborly disputes, property repairs, or maintenance issues in common areas. Word of mouth goes a long way and your tenants are sure to spread the news.
Looking for Multifamily Property in the Baton Rouge Area?
Whether you are looking to solely invest or to actively manage a multifamily property, we are eager to help you close your commercial real estate transaction quickly and efficiently. At SVN | Graham, Langlois, & Legendre, our dedicated team of commercial real estate professionals is here to support you on your real estate journey. From beginning your search to correctly marketing your property to the ideal client, we are here to support you from start to finish. Check out our database of available multifamily properties in the Baton Rouge area and contact us today to begin your search.