Cheltenham
The Cheltonian > Articles

Six ways to be a good Landlord

Good landlords keep tenants for longer and make better returns

1) A warm welcome
Key benefits: – informative and useful – establishes confidence between the two parties – generates a good relationship – creates awareness about the property and what’s expected during the tenancy – helps avoid unnecessary questions later. Giving your tenant a warm welcome and providing key information about the property and the tenancy before it begins is extremely useful for both the tenant and landlord... and some landlords like to provide a handy ‘welcome pack’ too. Creating a ‘welcome pack’ helps tenants understand how to work appliances, such as boilers, and helps them to settle into a property quickly.

2) Clear communication
Key benefits: – creates confidence and respect – helps build good relationships – helps uncover problems with the property or tenancy – potential longer tenancies – promotes openness. Good communication between a tenant and landlord is vital for a successful relationship... and tenancy. Establishing a good level of communication with your tenant can be beneficial as it will help them feel respected. They are likely to enjoy living in your property more... and possibly for longer too. Breaking down the communication barrier can also help resolve issues quickly and will help you identify any problems with the property or tenancy. A history of good communication is also beneficial if rental payment problems arise – a relationship built on openness and good communication gives you scope to help, resolve and provide advice
going forward.”

3) Repair and refresh
Key benefits: – helps maintain the property – can help avoid costly repairs later – a better living environment for the tenant – may help extend the tenancy – encourages the tenant to take pride in the property. If a property is well maintained then there will be less chance of large maintenance issues arising later. Landlords should regularly inspect the outside of the building and check the roof, windows and gutters. Regular internal inspections are also advised. Keeping on top of maintenance issues is highly beneficial for landlords as it can help them avoid large bills for major works, plus it also helps create happier tenants who will take pride in the property and will want to look after it.

4) Firm but fair
Key benefits: – builds trust and respect – promotes honesty from the tenant – allows you to deal with problems swiftly. Firm but fair landlords have good relationships with their tenants... but aren’t afraid to act quickly if a problem occurs. Items such as the Tenancy Agreement and rent payment dates, for instance, must be clearly defined from day one. However, in addition to being firm, a landlord should also be fair. It’s important that Tenancy Agreements are not weighted against the tenants. This would not help the tenant/landlord relationship.

5) Quick response
Key benefits: – creates trust and confidence – stops problems escalating – can help minimise contractor costs – peace of mind for both the landlord and tenant Being able to deal with unexpected issues is vital but, as most problems happen when you least expect them, it is helpful to supply your tenant with contact details for use in an emergency. A tenant needs to know that they can get in contact with you should they need to but, of course, being available out-of-hours can be tricky. If you are not going to be available during the evenings or at the weekends you should ideally consider asking a second-party to receive calls.

6) Expert help
Key benefits: – saves time – reassuring support – valuable source of information – practical help – expert advice Instructing a specialist property management agency, such as Belvoir, to manage the tenancy for you can be highly beneficial for many landlords. A letting agent can manage a tenancy and do many of the jobs expected of a landlord. They can carry out references and background checks, compile photographic and written inventories, perform regular property visits and inspections plus provide reports on these, advise of safety guidelines, collect rent, identify maintenance issues and provide use of their recommended trades-people and contractors. They can also supply the Tenancy Agreement put together by legal professionals and make sure the tenancy is complying with current legislation. The services of a good property management agent can be a lifeline for landlords with little time – or a simple solution for those who simply want a little extra help.

In association with Belvoir – the lettings specialist. For further information, please contact: Belvoir Gloucester and Cheltenham.
Tel: 01452 387334 or 01242 221188;
www.belvoirlettings.com/gloucester; www.belvoirlettings.com/cheltenham