Managing your first rental property can be a fantastic learning experience. At the same time, however, it can be a bit overwhelming for fledgling landlords with little to no property management experience. While you’re liable to hit a few snags during the adjustment phase, managing your first property effectively and efficiently is a challenge that you will more than likely be able to rise to. To help ensure a smooth transition into your new role as landlord, put the following pointers to good use.
Invest in Well-Maintained Properties
Any property you invest in should be reasonably well-maintained. Properties that have significant damage or have fallen into extreme disrepair may ultimately cost you a lot more than they stand to make you. Before committing to purchase your first rental property, make sure to have it thoroughly examined by experienced electricians, plumbers and building inspectors. In some cases, properties that appear to be exceptionally well-maintained are plagued by problems that aren’t noticeable to nonprofessionals. So, no matter how meticulously maintained a property appears to be, avoid skipping this crucial step. Lone Star State residents on the hunt for homes for rent in Pearland, TX are unlikely to take a chance on a property that lacks proper maintenance.
Don’t Ignore Small Issues
Failing to nip small issues in the bud stands to cost you a fair amount of money – and tenant goodwill – down the line. So, the next time one of your renters reports an issue with plumbing, electricity or other utilities, make a point of addressing these problems posthaste. The longer such issues are allowed to linger, the more pressing they’re likely to become – and the more expensive it will be to fix them.
As a property owner, the last thing you want is a reputation for poor upkeep. Unsurprisingly, tenants who are dissatisfied with your approach to property maintenance won’t hesitate to voice their dissatisfaction online. Depending on where they post their complaints, anyone who Googles your properties is liable to see them immediately. So, no matter how hesitant you are to devote time, money or effort to repairs and other maintenance tasks, indifference to such things won’t do you any favors with current or prospective renters.
Hire a Dependable Maintenance Staff
As revealed above, good maintenance is a tenet of solid property management. Since many landlords lack the time and expertise to attend to every upkeep task on their own, hiring a dependable maintenance staff can provide you with tremendous peace of mind. The maintenance personnel you work with should be knowledgeable and well-versed in plumbing, electrical work, basic carpentry and landscaping. This will help minimize the frequency with which you seek outside help on maintenance matters and ensure that problems with the property are taken care of in a timely and professional manner.
Never Handwave Tenant Concerns
As any seasoned property owner can attest, addressing tenant concerns is a large part of the job. Furthermore, the way you react to these concerns can have a profound impact on your relationships with renters and your professional reputation. If you adopt an indifferent or hands-off approach to questions, complaints and requests on the part of your tenants, don’t be surprised if you’re unable to retain renters long-term or attract new ones.
Of course, this isn’t to say that every concern a tenant presents you with is going to be reasonable. In fact, you may even receive some requests that are downright ridiculous. Still, taking the time to hear tenants out and provide them with thoughtful responses can illustrate how committed you are to their satisfaction. Even if you’re unable to give everyone the exact response they’re hoping for, it’s important to make all of your renters feel heard and respected.
Investing in your first rental property can be equal parts exciting and stressful. Although people with no property management experience tend to view being a landlord as easy, it’s actually a multifaceted role that requires one to make a variety of difficult decisions. So, while you’re likely to make the occasional mistake, you stand to learn quite a bit from your first foray into rental property management. First-time landlords on the hunt for helpful pointers would do well to remember the tips discussed above.