Repairing damage to rental properties is one of the biggest concerns of every landlord. Security deposits certainly add peace of mind, but they may not be enough to entirely protect the asset.
Below are four ideas landlords can implement to help ensure the safety and quality of their rental properties.
1. Don’t rely solely on the security deposit.
Security deposits are one of the most effective ways to hold tenants accountable for the state of their apartment. However, landlords can place too much faith in the security deposit they collect. Sometimes, deposits may not be enough to fully cover the damages a tenant inflicts on the apartment. Landlords should aim to return the tenant’s entire deposit, and use it as an incentive for tenants to properly maintain their apartments.
2. Establish expectations with tenants – and help them meet them.
Landlords and their tenants are on the same team. Landlords must learn to communicate with tenants well enough to develop a positive relationship. One of the best ways to do this is to create a tenant orientation program, as detailed at landlordtalking.com. A tenant orientation program can help clarify for tenants what they need to do to maintain the property.
3. Rely on the lease agreement with the tenant.
Here’s some good news: landlords don’t need to reinvent the wheel every time they have a problem with neglect or damage. Instead, rely on the lease agreement to help when something goes wrong at the property. If the lease is as detailed as possible, it can document exactly what is expected from tenants.
4. Maintain the highest quality properties possible.
Of course, one of the best ways landlords can ensure that properties stay in great condition is to show the property in the best condition possible and complete ongoing maintenance as scheduled. If the property is shown in the best condition possible, it will attract the type of people who are most likely to keep it in that condition. And if ongoing maintenance is completed as scheduled, and repairs are made promptly, it increases the probability that the tenant will rent long-term.
No matter the type of property, landlords can take steps to ensure that the property is treated well by the tenants.