Recently we’ve changed the way we do business with our landlords; we’ve listened to our tenants, ditched the bad landlords and kept the good ones. But what makes a good landlord? We met up with professional landlord David Garner and asked him for his 10 Top Tips on how to be a good landlord;
1. TREAT EVERYONE EQUALLY
Whether your tenants are commercial, domestic, students or professionals, everyone should be treated equally. It doesn’t matter if you’re renting a one-bedroom flat or a multi-million pound leisure centre, you should be treated with the same respect and courtesy
2. SORT OUT YOUR PAPERWORK
Make sure all your paperwork is completed properly at the beginning of a tenancy and you’ll save headaches down the line. Tenants should be properly referenced and inventories and deposit details given to all parties. The more transparent you are the better your relationship with your tenant will be
3. USE LOCAL KNOWLEDGE
The key to successfully letting your property is finding the right local agent. An in-depth knowledge of the local market is invaluable. Work closely with the agents and ensure they understand the standards you wish to maintain
4. UNDERSTAND WHAT A CUSTOMER IS
Treat your tenant as a customer, not as someone you do business with
5. DON’T MOVE, IMPROVE
As a landlord it’s not just important that you maintain your property, you should aim to improve it too. Managing agents can help with this by monitoring the property and suggesting upgrades and fixes along the way. The sooner the job is done the better.
6. THINK OUTSIDE THE BOX
Remember that the outside of your property is as important as the inside. Tenants are less likely to look after gardens and communal areas than owner-occupiers, so keep on top of the externals.
7. WOULD YOU LIVE IN YOUR PROPERTY?
My golden rule of investing is whether I’d live there myself. If I’m not prepared to live in a property myself then I won’t offer it for rent. I often buy property that requires refurbishment and will generally undertake the works immediately – nobody wants to live in a house that’s less than perfect
8. DON’T FORGET IT’S A TWO-WAY STREET
Even though your tenant is your customer, it’s a two-way street. If you keep your side of the bargain as a landlord, you should expect the same high standards in return from your tenants. And if you have any problems, make sure you use your managing agent to mediate
9. TRY AND ALWAYS GIVE BACK DEPOSITS
There’s an urban myth going around that most landlords do everything they can to keep a tenant’s deposit at the end of a tenancy. The reality couldn’t be further from the truth. If you’ve kept a tenant’s deposit then you’ve failed as a good landlord
10. LISTEN TO YOUR TENANT
Property is a learning curve for everyone, even experienced landlords. So always keep an open mind to suggestions from tenants and managing agents, and try to be constructive on how you can improve as a landlord. The moment you become complacent, you’ve let your eye off the ball