Learning how to retain your Essex tenants, and encourage them to sign lease renewals at the end of their lease terms, is something all successful property owners do at some point during their career.
In fact, learning this skill early on will save you the time and money it takes to advertise a vacant property, screen for new tenants, draft a new lease agreement, and prepare your property for new tenants.
Not to mention, retaining tenants grants you a consistent stream of income, and helps you keep your vacancy rates low.
Whether you employ an Essex property management company to help boost your property retention rates, or you self-manage your rentals and approach tenant retention yourself, there are always new tips to add to your arsenal for satisfying your tenant, and making them want to stay year after year.
Keep reading to find out some of the best tenant retention tips both you and your property manager can implement to secure long-term resident retention in your investment property.
The 5 Essential Ways to Boost Retention Rates in Your Rental
1. Build Strong Landlord-Tenant Relationships
Property management companies always stress the importance of first impressions when it comes to the landlord-tenant relationship.
And there’s a reason for that: how you begin a lease term with new tenants sets the tone for the rest of the tenancy.
That said, it is easy to forget to build on those relationships as your tenants settle into your property. This is especially true if your tenants always pay their rent on time, rarely complain or cause problems, and take care of your property the way they are supposed to.
But remember, when it comes to higher retention rates, it is this relationship with your tenants that matters most.
Do not spend all of your time and resources marketing vacant properties, dealing with problem tenants, and seeking new investment properties.
Instead, take the time to solidify relationships with good tenants that you hope to keep on for another lease term.
2. Say “Thank You”
Expressing your gratitude towards tenants that are worth the lease renewals you send out at the end of each lease term is another way to encourage high quality tenants to stay.
Try giving your best tenants something meaningful when it comes to rewarding them for their great tenant behavior.
Of course, a discount on rent is always welcome, since 58% of tenants prefer lower rent rates when it comes to incentives.
However, here are some unique ideas you can try should your budget allow:
- Reserved Parking Spaces. Loyal tenants are sure to appreciate a reserved parking spot. Perhaps a covered spot or one that is closer to the property is something you can offer as an incentive. This works especially well for properties in urban areas where parking space is limited.
- Deep Clean. Many property owners offer an annual carpet cleaning for tenants that sign lease renewals. However, taking it one step further and offering a house-wide deep clean is sure to make your tenants that much more satisfied.
- Buy a Gift. Depending on your budget, and how much you value your tenant, consider buying them a unique gift that you wouldn’t normally purchase for an adequate tenant. For example, annual passes to the local zoo or amusement park, new furniture, or even something electronic such as a TV can go a long way when it comes to tenant satisfaction.
As you can see, there are plenty of ways to reward your tenant for being a good tenant and signing lease renewals with you. Sometimes, all it takes is a small incentive to push them in the right direction and convince them to stay.
3. Make Tenant Satisfaction a Year-Round Priority
Just as it is important to work on your tenant-landlord relationship throughout the lease term, it is important you check on the level of your tenant’s satisfaction throughout the lease term as well.
If you wait to find out your tenant does not want to renew with you come lease renewal time because they were not happy with some of the things you or your Essex property management company did or did not do, it’s too late.
Check on your tenants year-round to make sure any minor issues they are having are addressed immediately.
This proactive approach may be just enough to show your tenants that it’s worth their while to stay in your property for another year.
4. Get Feedback from Tenants and Make Improvements
One thing all our property managers in Essex encourage their clients to do is collect feedback from current tenants to find out what improvements, if any, can be made.
Again, waiting until lease renewal time to find out your tenants are unhappy is too late.
Chances are they have already made their mind up and are on the way out, no matter what you do to try to stop them.
Here are some helpful feedback tips:
- Attempt to meet with your tenants face-to-face for a more personalized meeting
- For tenants that cannot meet in person, make an online or mail-in survey available so they can participate at their own convenience
- Consider offering a small incentive to get tenants to complete the survey, such as a one month rent discount
- Take the time to work with your property management company once results come in to make needed improvements
In addition to maintaining an open line of communication with your tenants throughout their lease term, implementing an annual satisfaction survey can help you lower tenant turnover rates, and make your rental property business more successful.
5. Offer 24/7 Rental Property Maintenance
Around the clock maintenance is something that all tenants appreciate when it comes to leasing a rental property.
When you fail to pay attention to the overall maintenance and repair procedures you have in place, and problems ensue, tenants are sure to look elsewhere to live once their lease is up.
Make sure your tenant knows from the start what to do in the case of an emergency versus a minor repair issue.
Give them all of the appropriate contact information – property manager, contractors, emergency maintenance, and the after-hours call center – so that when they need something, they know exactly what to do and who to call.
In addition, it is crucial you stay on top of the relationship your property management company and vendors have.
If that relationship is broken, this will surely carry over into any work performed on your investment property for your tenants. This can bother tenants to the point they do not want to sign a lease renewal with you.
Your tenants need to feel good about where they live, especially if they are going to sign lease renewals come the end of their lease terms.
And as the property owner, whether you enlist the help of a property manager or not, it is your responsibility to make sure they are nothing short of satisfied.
If you own rental property in the Essex region, and hope to reduce your property vacancies, get in touch with Bay Management Group today. We provide superior customer service to both property owners and their tenants, and believe that how we treat our customers is the most important aspect of our business.
With effective maintenance procedures in place to guarantee tenant satisfaction, the ability to regularly check in on tenants to ensure they are not having any issues, and the desire to collect and utilize any feedback we receive from your tenants, we can help you improve your property retention rates. It is our job to place long-term tenants in your rental and make certain they are happy.