If you’ve ever moved to a new city, you know how stressful the process can be.
Not only do you have to deal with the normal hassles of moving like packing and cleaning – you also have to leave familiar surroundings and get used to a completely new area.
You have to figure out where all of the good attractions are located, learn to navigate a new system of roads, and try to make new friends in the midst of the madness.
If your tenant is moving from a different city into one of your Baltimore County rental properties, show them that you’re a good landlord by helping make their transition to the area as easy as possible.
How to Help Your Tenants Transition to a New Neighborhood
1. Provide a custom map
Chances are your new tenants can use an app on their phone to see a basic map of their new city.
However, that map probably won’t show the best restaurants, the easiest route for them to get to work during rush hour, and other tailored information.
That’s where you come in!
If possible, pick up a map of the local area and mark notable locations for your tenants, including local grocery stores and restaurants.
You’ll probably want to talk to your tenant first to see what locations are important to them so you can customize their map accordingly.
For example, if they have children in school, they’ll probably want to know where the campus is located. On the other hand, if your tenants are college students in Towson, they might be more interested in the local night life.
Take the time to find out what matters to your tenant the most and make sure they understand how to access those locations easily.
2. Give tenants gift cards to local restaurants/stores
If you’ve lived in Baltimore County for a while, you probably know of some restaurants that are popular with locals but unknown to people from other areas. Share your knowledge with your new tenants, and consider giving them a gift card to one of the popular locations in the area (especially if it’s to a local pizza place on moving day!).
If your rental property is in in White Marsh, tenants may have too many options to choose from. Giving them some guidance on where to start could prove to be very helpful and help build a great landlord-tenant relationship from the beginning.
If you’re not sure which restaurant to choose, give them a gift card to a local grocery store.
3. Provide your tenants with a few move-in necessities
Moving is a big life change, and sometimes basic needs can be forgotten in the process.
Consider helping your tenants by providing them with some of these items when they move in to your property:
- Toilet paper
- Paper towels
- Cleaning equipment (glass cleaner, sponges, etc.)
- Bottled water
- A roll of address labels
- Change of address booklets
- A copy of the tenancy agreement
Doing this really shows that you care about the tenant’s transition to your property and might save them from making an unwanted trip to the grocery store when they’re already tired from moving.
If you’re feeling extra generous, include a few snacks or small gifts (flowers, pre-made gift baskets, etc.) – this is another great way to set the tone for a healthy tenant/landlord relationship!
4. Leave a personalized note on the kitchen counter on move-in day
Leaving a personalized, handwritten note for your tenants shows that you really care about their move-in experience. Here’s what you should include:
- A statement letting the tenants know that you’re happy to have them in your property
- Your contact information
- Your office hours (the time they should contact you for anything other than an emergency)
- Payment information (rent amount, due date, late payment policies/fees, and instructions on how to pay)
- Maintenance policies
You don’t have to write a long letter – a couple paragraphs welcoming them to their new home and re-stating important information about their lease will work just fine. If you decided to buy a gift card for your tenant, leave it next to the note on the kitchen counter!
5. Make a great first impression during the walkthrough
You should be proud to show your property to a prospective tenant.
Make sure all of the rooms in the home are clean and painted properly and that everything is in good working condition. Tend to the outside of your property too by mowing the lawn and trimming back any overgrown shrubbery, and consider planting a low-maintenance garden in the yard to add curb appeal and a welcoming feel.
Also, answer any questions your tenants have during the walkthrough. Some tenants don’t hesitate when it comes to asking questions about your property and the local area, but others might be a bit more reserved about their concerns.
Without being too intrusive, let them know that you’re there to help make their transition as easy as possible and address their concerns. You might even want to introduce them to their new neighbors if you know them and feel comfortable doing so.
Don’t forget to educate tenants about your rules and expectations when they move in. That way, you can avoid confusion and conflict with them in the future and set yourself up for a positive experience.
6. Follow up with tenants after they move in
Once your tenants have moved in, wait about a month to check in on them and make sure everything is okay.
They may have new questions for you that they didn’t think of at the walkthrough, and this is a great time to answer those questions and make sure they’re happy in their new home.
Following the steps here will help you get and keep happier tenants, which can result in more timely rent payments and more thoughtful care of your properties – it’s a win-win!
And remember, if you’re a landlord looking for help with your job responsibilities, our Baltimore County property management team would love to assist you. From and throughout Maryland, we can help you keep and retain the best tenants possible.
In fact, our screening services are so effective that less than 1% of the tenants we place get evicted! If they do get evicted within the first year, we re-lease the property for you for free.