Being a landlord can be challenging, but it can also be very rewarding. Landlords can earn a lot of money, or they can spend a ton of money on legal fees and lose more than they make. You can self-manage your rentals or be hands-off if you hire the right team and outsource it.
Either way, doing it right, and doing it well, will save you money and heartache, probably legal fees, and can attract quality tenants who will take care of your asset.
No matter what strategy you pursue as a landlord, here are a few things you should do no matter what.
Treat your business like a business, always.
Open business bank accounts, keep track of your receipts, cut unnecessary expenses. Legitimize and protect your asset with appropriate entities and insurance.
Build quality, lasting systems.
This is the next step to treating your business like a business. If you build systems and you’re able to do routine things routinely, you’ll be able to respond to issues that come up with your tenants or issues that come up with the property. This will allow you to be a great landlord over a long period of time and make a lot of money while owning a particular asset.
Know the laws.
Make sure that you’re using all the right leases and documentation based on the requirements of your state. Hold deposits in the right type of bank account. Check out American Apartments Owner’s Association’s Website for a breakdown of requirements by state.
Take care of your tenants.
Your tenants may come into some hard times, or may have some financial or personal difficulties. After all, they are human, and they deserve empathy and to be heard. Ensure that they know that the lines of communications are open and that you’re going to take care of them.
I do not suggest posting an eviction notice on the door of a great tenant that always pays on time if they are one day late. If they’re communicating with you and telling you that they are going to bring you the rent payment, hold them to that and come up with a payment plan.
Build trust with them and let them perform. If they don’t, then you need to hold on to what that lease says and take further action, but a good tenant deserves the benefit of the doubt, at least once.
Do exactly what the lease says.
Stick to your word and do exactly what the lease says, no matter what. Anytime that you agree to a lease with a tenant, you need to stick to that lease. If you break that lease even one time, you’re telling your tenant that that lease is not important, and giving them the freedom and flexibility to do the same. If you uphold the lease, your tenant will respect you and will understand that the boundaries are written right in black and white within the lease, and any violation on that will not be tolerated.
Treat your venders well.
Pay them on time, pay them appropriately, and treat them fairly. But also hold them accountable. If you asked them to do a job, make sure that they do it well, and then compensate them in a timely manner.
These are just a few of the things good landlords do. It is by no means an exhaustive list, and there are plenty of additional things you can do as a landlord.
Being an awesome landlord is not only fulfilling, but can also be very lucrative. You need the right tenants to preserve your asset and build your wealth, so it is imperative that you do your best to be the best landlord that you can be! This will allow you to find and keep great tenants!