How to Find Good Tenants (And Keep Them)
An investment property can be a huge asset. As a landlord, to make the venture as profitable and stress-free as possible, you will want to attract high-quality tenants who will stay long-term. However, this isn’t just about knowing what makes a good tenant.
Of course, choosing an attractive investment property with excellent features will go a long way towards getting your dream tenants to rent the property. But you will also need to market it appropriately.
What is a good tenant?
A good landlord will go to great lengths to find a qualified tenant for their rental property. A good tenant makes life easier on the landlord as it takes away the worries surrounding a stranger taking up residence in their investment property.
A good tenant will possess a range of different qualities. From small things like paying the rent on time and treating the property like their own, to bigger tasks such as keeping up with maintenance and keeping the property clean, a good tenant will tick all the boxes.
A tenant who looks after the property takes pressure off the landlord, and allows for both tenant and landlord to find any potential maintenance issues before becoming too big and costly.
Good tenants respect the property they are living in. They communicate openly and honestly with landlords to make sure that the property remains in good condition so that everyone is happy.
How can you attract the right applicants?
Spending time and money creating a property that attracts the right tenants is one of the best investments a landlord can make. Obviously, if your property is attractive to tenants, it will:
- Make your life easier,
- The quality of tenants you attract will be better,
- It will alleviate stress, financial and time pressures, and
- Make your investment work harder for you.
But how can you maximise your chances of attracting the right applicants for your property?
1. Choosing the most attractive property
Some things can be added to any home – appliances, new paint or flooring – but many desirable factors can’t be changed.
This is why it is important, when you are looking at buying an investment property, to consider every aspect of potential properties from a tenant’s perspective.
The first and most obvious consideration is location. Being close to transport and retail centres, schools, parks and universities will increase your rental value, and so will a nice view.
Another factor to consider is the neighbourhood itself. Is it safe, do people want to live here, are there any rowdy neighbours in the area?
It is a good idea to talk to your agent and do your own Google searches to understand what the neighbourhood is like before buying.
A major concern for many tenants, especially in the cities is parking. Nowadays, tenants often expect double car accommodation. So at the very minimum, make sure you look for a place that has off-street parking for at least one car.
2. Added features
It is important to have the right features as part of your property can potentially make or break a deal. In many cases, extra features enable you to charge a higher rent and have the added bonus of reducing the amount of time your property is left vacant.
Every week a property sits vacant (and this can occur even in periods of low vacancy rates) is almost 2% of your yearly income that you won’t get back. For this reason alone, reducing vacancies is crucial for every investor.
It is important to make sure your property is at the top of its game. In a market where there might be 50 or 60 other similar properties available, it is not just about getting top dollar, but also about leasing your property faster than others.
Popular features that will attract good tenants include:
- Good quality kitchen
- Air-conditioning / heating
- Good quality fixtures and appliances
- Quality blinds, shutters or curtains
- Good cable connection for internet and Wi-Fi, a strong signal for smartphones, and multiple power points to facilitate simultaneous connections across a multitude of platforms
- Outdoor area
Always try to present your property well, price it to meet the market, and employ the services of a property manager who can oversee the whole operation.
3. Have professional photography
No listing is really complete without great pictures. If the property has spacious bedrooms, stunning features and inspired decor, why shouldn’t it be shown off?
Don’t leave the interior of the property up to a tenant’s imagination. Pictures can create visual interest, allowing potential renters to picture themselves living their lives in the space. Photographs can really bring a property to life and drive people through the doors come inspection time.
4. Create a memorable property listing
Writing a compelling listing is one of the first things landlords can do to attract tenants to a property. Listings that include a strong hook in the headline, descriptive yet concise information and make it easy for potential tenants to get in contact are ideal.
Taking the time to write a memorable listing helps attract a larger pool of quality tenants eager to see the property for themselves.
What to avoid
Just as there are some things tenants will be willing to pay more for, there are also features that will detract from the value of your property.
A dark property will always put tenants off, as will one that is dirty or in poor condition. A dark property refers to one with limited windows and, therefore, minimal opportunities for natural light.
Remember you will not be the one living in the property, so even if you like dark or brightly coloured rooms, for others, they may be a big turn-off. Try and stay as natural as possible to appeal to the biggest market.
What can I change?
Some quick changes such as a fresh coat of paint, new fittings such as door handles, a new kitchen benchtop, and modern light switches can go a long way in having your property appeal to good tenants.
But if you want to make bigger changes, be careful not to overcapitalise on your property. When considering making more significant changes, it is important to talk to your property manager. They can advise you on where you could best add value and the expected rental return after these improvements.
Renting your Property
Finding good tenants to sign on the dotted line can sometimes be a long and drawn-out process. However, taking small steps to ensure that your investment property is up to scratch in terms of features and attractiveness, along with securing the help of the right agency, can go a long way towards getting the right tenants for your property.
Get a free rental appraisal today for more advice on finding good tenants and keeping them. Also, read our guide to finding a property manager who will help you attract the best tenants and maximise rental income.
DISCLAIMER - The information provided is for guidance and informational purposes only and does not replace independent business, legal and financial advice which we strongly recommend. Whilst the information is considered true and correct at the date of publication, changes in circumstances after the time of publication may impact the accuracy of the information provided. LJ Hooker will not accept responsibility or liability for any reliance on the blog information, including but not limited to, the accuracy, currency or completeness of any information or links.