Six Ways to Retain Quality Tenants

Happy tenants moving into new rental home
Happy tenants moving into new rental home

As a landlord or property manager, you already know the value of good tenants. Those who pay their rent on time, take great care of your rental property, and keep the lines of communication open and pleasant. Tenants like these are hard to find, so when you do come across them, it’s essential to make an effort to keep them. This way, you’ll maintain a steady rental income and avoid the stress and expenses that come with marketing a vacant rental unit. Without further ado, here are six great ways to retain quality tenants.

1. Stay on top of maintenance tasks

Being proactive about property maintenance is one of the easiest ways to keep quality tenants around. Keep up with regular property inspections and make quick fixes to your rental unit before they become larger issues. Doing this leaves a good impression with your tenant and shows them that you’re committed to providing a nice home for them to live in. Being a landlord that is proactive about routine maintenance also helps your tenants avoid the frustration of living in a home that’s falling apart – and this could be a major deciding factor when it’s time to renew their lease.

2. Adopt fair housing practices

Everyone loves a good deal – this includes your tenants. It’s no surprise that tenants who feel like they’re being cheated are more likely to look for a new residence. To avoid this situation, we suggest you adopt fair housing practices. For example, when setting rent, offer a reasonable price that is comparable to similar properties within the area, or current rental rates within the market. 

3. Get familiar

Creating good rapport is another great way to keep good tenants around. As a landlord or property manager, being friendly and establishing open lines of communication between yourself and your tenants is a good business practice. Send your tenants a welcome basket when they move in and be easy to contact in case they need assistance with anything regarding their new home. These little gestures go a long way when building trust and goodwill.

4. Allow some personalization

The difference between a house and a home is how comfortable tenants feel in the space. When tenants come home to their art hung up, or their favourite colour painted on the walls, it helps them feel like the rental unit is truly theirs. To retain your tenants, we suggest you allow some level of personalization. This will increase their attachment to the home, resulting in an increased likelihood of them renewing their tenancy. 

5. Offer renewal incentives

If you’ve got a great tenant whose lease is coming up for renewal, offering a renewal incentive might be the perfect way to influence their decision. You could offer monetary incentives like a rent discount over a period of time, or you offer property upgrades like new appliances, paint, landscaping etc. Most tenants will be appreciative and swayed by your efforts to keep their business.

6. Know what tenants want

As a property manager, knowing what tenants want is an essential part of your job. Not only will a home that caters to renters’ wants help you perform well in the rental market, it will also help you retain quality tenants. Check-out our blog to help you figure out what renters are looking for in a newly renovated home. 

Tenant retention is the name of the game for all property managers. With these six tips, keeping your tenants happy and in your rental property will be easier than ever.

Need help managing your rental?

Get in touch with us today!

Five Property Management Technologies Property Managers Should Be Using

Property managers using management technology
Property managers using management technology

There’s no doubt that property managers have a lot on their plate. From dealing with contractors to marketing rental units and working hard to keep tenants happy, most property managers have a lot of work to do on a daily basis. Luckily, in this day of modern technology, there are tons of tools at your fingertips to help you stay organized, streamline tasks and manage your workload. To help you stay on top of your game this new year, we’ve shortlisted five of the best technological tools every property manager should be using.

1. Appfolio Property Manager

Appfolio Property Manager is a commonly used tool in the real estate industry. This cloud-based technology is an excellent choice for property managers who want to monitor their rental units – anywhere, at any time. The Appfolio’s property management software offers an all-in-one solution for accounting, marketing, leasing and management functionality for everything from single family to commercial rental units. Using Appfolio, property managers can do everything from posting vacancy ads on hundreds of listing sites to screening tenants and collecting rent online. 

2. Buildium Property Management Software

 Another favourite amongst property managers, Buildium’s software lets property managers tackle business operation, accounting and leasing tasks from a single platform. Buildium also helps you manage your growth as a property manager. You can easily find, win and onboard rental properties in your area into your portfolio. That’s not all – the Buildium Property Management software allows property managers to create their own custom sites – this way you can have an online platform to host all your available listings.

3. BeenVerified

Your success as a property manager is highly dependent on the quality of your tenants. That’s why the BeenVerified app is a must for every new property manager. With this app, you can conduct thorough background and credit checks, get access to public records and any other essential information that will influence your tenant selection. The BeenVerified app is user-friendly, and a perfect option for anyone who is just getting into the property management game.

4. Salesforce Essentials

Widely considered the best CRM tool, Salesforce helps property managers manage and better their relationships with tenants. Salesforce Essentials allows you to streamline communication with your tenants and respond to their queries and concerns in a timely manner. This CRM tool also makes automating document and form filing, and data retrieval a piece of cake. Another selling point for Salesforce Essentials is that it’s also available as a mobile app – making it the perfect choice for property managers on the go.

5. Rentmoola

Figuring out rent payments can be a pain for both landlords and tenants alike. But, with the help of apps like Rentmoola, sorting out monthly payments is easier than ever. Rentmoola is a simple, easy and secure rent collection solution that lets tenants pay their rent in a method that’s most efficient for them and their property managers. This could be via credit, debit, auto payments and more. Rentmoola also provides real-time reporting tools to help you keep track of rental income.

Property management doesn’t have to be an overwhelming job. With these amazing technologies in your toolkit, you’ll be able to get a handle on your workload in no-time!

Need help managing your rental properties?

Get in touch with us today!

Five Signs You Need to Hire a Property Manager

couple hiring a property manager
Couple hiring a property manager

It’s common knowledge that owning property comes with major advantages. It’s a great long-term investment strategy, a great way to generate passive income, and you’ll be able to benefit from the property’s appreciation if you decide to sell later down the line.  However, in order to reap these benefits, landlords have to be knowledgeable about the field, and have a ton of skills in their repertoire. So, before you add Landlord to your resume, here are some telltale signs that you’ll need to hire a property manager to help you with your investment.

1. You’re easily overwhelmed

Landlords and property managers need to know how to cope with stress – especially if you’re looking after multiple properties at a time. Landlords usually deal with competing deadlines, tenants’ complaints, property maintenance, inspections and tours amongst other things. With a to-do list this long, multitasking and staying calm in high pressure situations are two essential skills for success. If you’re someone who is easily overwhelmed and prefers to handle one task at a time, hiring a property manager may be the way to go. Experienced property managers like the team at Cornerstone do a great job of handling tenants’ queries and overseeing the upkeep of your investment property. This way you can sit back and enjoy the benefits of property ownership.

2. You’re not a marketer

Finding quality tenants to occupy your rental relies heavily on good marketing and sales tactics. In this day and age, you have to keep up with the best practices of digital and traditional marketing, photography, networking, and apartment staging if need be. This is where property managers come in. A good property manager will be able to use good visuals and copy to advertise your rental on online classifieds. They should also be able to help with off-site marketing strategies and confidently sell your rental’s best features to potential tenants during viewings.

3. You have several rental properties

Managing multiple rental properties at once is a full-time job! If you’re someone who has invested in property to generate passive income on the side, you may not have time to deal with multiple tenant inquiries, renovations, viewings and more. In this case, working with a property management company would be incredibly beneficial. It will lighten your workload and ease the stress of dealing with multiple properties at once. Management companies will also ensure your rentals are properly taken care of by assigning a different supervisor to each one of your units.

4. You live in a different city

For property owners who don’t live in the same city as their rental units, working with a property manager can significantly improve your situation. Hiring a local property manager means you won’t have to commute back and forth at the slightest inconvenience of your tenants. You’ll be able to rely on them to use their skills and assets to keep things running smoothly on the ground without your constant supervision.

5. You don’t know your landlord/tenant laws

If you plan on being a successful landlord, you’ve got to know your local landlord/tenant laws. And, if you don’t have time to learn, then you’ll need to work with a property manager.  Every municipality has specific regulations that guide the landlord-tenant relationship. These guidelines outline your role as a landlord, what you’re responsible for; and vice versa. A good property manager should know the landlord/tenant law and advise you on how best to deal with tricky situations that arise between you and your tenants.

Being a landlord is a job that requires time and a diverse skill set. Luckily, if you find yourself falling short in one of the areas mentioned above, you can hire skilled property managers to help take the stress of property management off your plate!

Need help managing your rental property?

Get in touch with us today!

Seven Essential Qualities to Look for in A Property Manager

Property manager with heys to a rental home
Property manager handing over the keys to the tenant's new home

Some landlords often struggle to decide whether or not they should hire someone to manage their rental property. After all, who will look after your investment better than you can? Although the search for a good property manager may be tedious, it’s one that is well worth it once you find the right fit. Getting someone to look after your rental property means you won’t have to deal with the stress of tenant screening, maintenance and much more. So, for landlords on the hunt for the perfect property manager for their rental, here are seven essential qualities to look for.

1. Excellent communication skills

It goes without saying that the person or team you choose to manage your rental property must be excellent communicators, both oral and written. Your property manager will represent you and will be in constant communication with everyone from tenants and real estate agents, to contractors and possibly other property owners. This means that their ability to communicate effectively will affect the service you get from contractors, the quality of tenants attracted to your property, how fast your property is rented and everything in between. So, when looking for the right property manager, be sure to assess their communication skills.

2. Patience

Property management can be stressful at times. From unruly tenants to contractors running behind schedule, there are lots of trying situations that property managers encounter on a regular basis, and it’s essential to be able to handle them with grace. When interviewing potential property managers, try to gauge their listening skills and assess how well they’ll be able to deal with complaints and stressful situations.

3. Professionalism

Professionalism is another important quality to look for when on the hunt for the right person to handle your rental. Needless to say, your property manager will be conducting a lot of business on your behalf, and they’ll need to be kind yet assertive in these settings. Look for someone who is respectful, knowledgeable, well put together and has excellent customer service skills. 

4. Tech Savviness

Anyone who is active in the real-estate world knows that the industry is quickly becoming digital. New technologies are being introduced, companies are focused on digital marketing, and rental ads are now posted on platforms like Hamilton Homes for Rent, rather than in newspapers. Having someone who is familiar with common technology used in the industry will ensure that you’re able to provide a service comparable to other property owners in the market.

5. Organized

The work of a property manager often has them dealing with a lot of different situations simultaneously. They could be renewing a lease, renovating a rental unit, overseeing eviction proceedings, and scheduling viewings of a recently vacated home all at the same time. Property managers have to be incredibly organized in order to stay on top of all the demands that come along with the job.

6. An investor’s mindset

When searching for a property manager, you want to choose someone who is going to care for your investment as if it were their own. The best way for property managers to do this is to approach property management like they are real estate investors. This will help them see the “bigger picture” and guide the business decisions they make on your behalf. When a property manager has an investor’s mindset, they’ll know what to spend money on to make your rental stand out in the market, when to offer rent concessions, how to get a good return on investment etc.

7. Basic marketing skills

Marketing your rental property to potential tenants is one of the biggest responsibilities of a property manager. They should be able to write about your property, select appropriate photos and point out its selling points in such a way that that your rental appeals to renters. A good property manager should also know about the community your rental is located in as this will help them market its most attractive amenities.

Looking for the perfect property managers for your rental? Get in touch with us today!

Five Common Repairs All Property Managers Will Encounter

Property manager repairing rental home

Whether you like it or not, your rental property has a lifespan. It’s only a matter of time until the plumbing needs to be fixed or doorknobs need to be replaced. As a landlord, handling repairs is a big part of your job. The landlord-tenant law requires all property owners to maintain their rentals, ensuring the space is livable. Luckily, when you work with a property manager these are fixes that we can deal with instead. For landlords and property managers ready to roll up their sleeves and get their hands dirty, here are five common repairs all property owners will encounter.

1. Plumbing

Plumbing is one of the most common fixes landlords have to deal with, and it’s one we suggest you tend to quickly. A seemingly small leak under the kitchen sink could end up dramatically increasing your next water bill. Depending on the cause of the leak, this is a repair you can possibly take on yourself. However, if you don’t know your way around those pipes, you might want to get a plumber to take on this project. 

2. Clogged toilets

While fixing a clogged toilet isn’t always your job as a property manager, it is a situation that comes up quite often. When the toilet in your rental property is clogged, you have to first figure out the cause. If your tenant clogs the toilet themselves, they’re responsible for getting it fixed. However, not all clogs are the tenant’s fault. Sometimes it’s a symptom of a larger issue with the main plumbing line or your drainpipe. If this is the case, then it’s something a landlord has to handle. And, with problems this big, we suggest calling a pro.

3. Leaky ceilings

A leaky ceiling is arguably one of the worst things that could happen to a home. If left unchecked, it could destroy everything from drywall and hardwood to flooring. Leaky ceilings, if left unchecked, also lead to mold which could make your rental inhabitable, and would cost a fortune to get under control. So, when your tenant calls you about a leak from the roof, put it at the top of your priority list.

4. Furnace repairs

Furnaces play an important role in regulating the temperature in your rental. So, furnace repairs should be another fix at the top of your priority list. To prevent the furnace in your rental from breaking down, you should get it serviced yearly and your tenants should replace the furnace filter every three months. However, if problems still arise despite regular maintenance, property managers should have a furnace specialist ready to help when needed.

5. Rundown appliances

Appliances in every home are used quite often, so it’s no surprise if they break down every now and then. Luckily, most of these issues can be easily fixed. New heating elements can be easily installed, and old dishwashers and stoves can be replaced. If the appliances in your rental property need replacing, we suggest visiting a used appliance store first. These stores have a great selection of stoves, dishwashers etc. that are almost as good as new.

Being a landlord or property manager comes with a lot of responsibilities and handling maintenance and repairs for rental properties is one of them. Luckily, with the right skills and resources handling these emergencies for your tenants should be no problem.

Need help maintaining your rental property? Get in touch with us today!