Sometimes, you may wonder why you have difficulty attracting or keeping tenants, or why you don’t make as much money with your investment as you can. While you can consider some outside factors or the quality of your rental property itself, you also must take a step back and look carefully at some of your own behaviors or actions. Identify some of the bad habits that landlords are guilty of that causes them to lose rental income.
Not Allowing Pets
Most property owners simply do not allow pets in the property entirely. While this is understandable, as pets can cause a lot of damage in the unit, it can also cost you potential income. A great majority of Americans are pet owners, and by enforcing a strict blanket policy against pets, you are losing potential tenants over it. If you are still uncomfortable with having pets in your property, you can take measures such as charging monthly pet fees, restricting certain liable breeds, and encouraging tenants to buy insurance that covers pet liability.
Procrastinating on Maintenance
Putting off maintenance tasks, especially ones requested by tenants, ultimately brings more trouble than its worth. After all, if you don’t enjoy it when tenants are late with their rent, they you should not handle repairs in the same way. If you avoid taking care of repairs as needed, the problems will only escalate and further damage your property. Take care of even small, cosmetic repairs to keep your tenants happy and the income coming in.
Excessive Late Fees
Encouraging your tenants to pay their rent on time is important to ensure a respectful relationship and receive the money necessary to pay off property bills and invest in repairs. Charging late fees to ensure timely pay is not unreasonable, but make sure you set fees that actually cover the damage created by the fee delay. If you charge far more than reasonable, you can find yourself repelling tenants or landing in legal trouble.
Bad Screening Protocol
It’s not your fault if and when you end up with an irresponsible tenant you must throw out. When you have multiple irresponsible or dodgy tenants, however, it may be a sign of a larger problem. Most likely, the tenant screening protocol you or your property manager enforce is too relaxed or inadequate to weed out problematic tenants. Rather than constantly blaming bad tenants, enforce a more detailed and stricter screening process to mitigate the issue from the start.
Misusing Security Deposit
The income you receive from a tenant’s security deposit is supposed to repair damage beyond typical wear-and-tear, necessary cleaning, and late rent fees. However, some landlords still misuse security deposit funds to cover refurbishing, minor repairs, cosmetic improvements, and appliance upgrades, instead of saving them for urgent repairs. You should avoid a massive legal issue and make better use of the money by spending it only on genuine emergency repairs.
Learn to control some of your bad habits by using the right support systems. Learn more about how Home365 can help you improve your property management skills.