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As a landlord, your occupancy rate is one of the determining factors in your success. If your property is continuously rented and your vacancy rates are minimal, your cash flow will almost certainly be positive and healthy. The challenge lies in maintaining this momentum.

Try These 5 Tips

Keeping a rental property occupied isn’t as easy as most third-party observers think. It’s not as simple as putting a “For Rent” sign in the front yard when one tenant moves out and signing a lease with a new tenant the next day. Turnover is complicated and comes with plenty of hurdles. The best thing you can do is prevent turnover by increasing your retention rates. With that in mind, here are several tips you may find helpful:

1. Onboard the Right Tenants

First impressions go a long way. If you want your tenants to feel at ease in your property, it starts with onboarding. Whenever you bring on a new tenant, make it a point to personally meet them and answer any questions they might have.

Small touches like “welcome gift baskets” go a long way. For $100, you can buy some snacks, housewarming gifts, or gift cards to welcome your new tenant into the property. This creates positive associations between you and the tenant, which can give you some leeway later on, should any issues arise.

2. Keep Tenants Happy

It’s a whole lot easier to retain an existing tenant than it is to find a new one. This means your best bet for keeping your rental property occupied is to sign long-term lease agreements with tenants (and to get them to stay on board by signing new lease agreements). In order to accomplish this, you have to keep your tenants happy.

One of the best ways to keep tenants happy is by listening to them. If they have an issue with the property and/or reasonable request, address it right away to Xpert Foundation Repair if they are having issues on the foundation. In fact, you should go above and beyond. If you’re planning to remodel or upgrade something, don’t wait until after your tenant’s lease agreement ends. Instead, ask them for input on what they’d like to see and involve them in the process. This helps them feel like your property is truly their home.

3. Hire a Property Management Company

Being a good landlord requires availability. You have to be ready to jump into action at any time. Unfortunately, most landlords have other jobs, careers, and family obligations that make it difficult to be available around the clock. If that’s the case, there needs to be a backup plan in place. Otherwise, tenants will quickly grow frustrated with you and look for the first opportunity to leave.

For landlords with a busy schedule, it helps to have a local property manager. A good property management company will handle tenant screening, onboarding, maintenance and repair requests, rent collection, property inspections, and more. 

4. Proactively Market Your Listing

Don’t wait until your current tenant notifies you that they won’t be signing a new lease agreement to begin searching for your next tenant. It’s smart to always be marketing your property.

Make sure everyone in your personal and professional network knows that you have a rental property. Keep them aware of when your current lease agreement is set to expire and let them know that there’s a possibility of a vacancy. 

Build relationships with real estate agents, mortgage brokers, and anyone else who comes in frequent contact with people who are looking for housing. As they say, your network is your net worth. 

5. Keep a Fair Market Rent

Nobody wants to overpay for a rental property. If your rates are on the high end of the market, you’re going to have more trouble keeping tenants in your property. On the other hand, if you offer an affordable rate that’s in line with the standard going rate of the neighborhood, you’ll keep your tenants for longer periods of time. (After all, they won’t be able to find many places that are cheaper.)

Putting it All Together

If you can keep your rental properties occupied for the majority of the year, it makes your job much easier. It also increases your chances of generating positive cash flow from your investment. Use the tips outlined above to find success!

About the author

Kyrie Mattos