Handing the keys to the right tenant – For experienced landlords this is a common problem, for new ones however, a non-paying or disorderly tenant can seem pretty daunting. A tenant appears good on the face of it, moves in, then suddenly decides to be difficult and not pay. Here are a few tips to find a reliable tenant who will not trash your property.
Do your research
It is crucial to find a good tenant if you want to ensure a happy rental period. Do not estimate this part of the process and be ready to conduct in depth investigation on potential tenants. It is often useful to get a reference from a previous landlord or employee. Many landlords like to write out a relevant reference template asking questions such as, “Do you think (name) is responsible when left in possession of another’s property.” Or “would you trust (name) to house sit?” Be prepared to obtain credit records as these can prove extremely useful in seeing a potential tenant’s reliability. It may even be useful to find out what the tenant’s occupation and look into the company’s profile to see how stable it is.
A thorough investigation is important, however it is always best to meet up and discuss tenancy in person – in this way you can get a good judgement of character. You can never underestimate the importance of character judgement. Meeting up in person can also determine if there will be a good landlord-tenant rapport, making any difficulties down the line a lot easier to deal with.
Don’t be Naïve
Ask an estate agent for advice if needs be and do plenty of research first to get any tips. Remember when meeting the tenant that you have the upper hand. The tenant is clearly interested and wants to rent your property if they have gone to the trouble of meeting up. Therefore, don’t accept any kinds of promises, especially payment related. Draw up a clear contract and make sure it is legally fool proof. Ask for a deposit, especially if you have furniture or electronic items in the property. Normally one month should cover it. And don’t forget, always make sure you’re covered against any eventuality with the right landlord insurance!