Category: Renter (3)

Written by Sally Norton for Vogue Real Estate Australia

As you might already be aware, investing in rental properties in Australia can be pretty lucrative. However, being a successful landlord involves more than just collecting your tenants’ rent checks. The success of your rental property business will also depend on how well you cooperate and communicate with your renters. For this reason, we will discuss how to build an amazing relationship with your tenants. 

Keep tenants you cooperate well with

It is a common misconception that managing a rental property boils down to making your rental property stand out. Yes, investing in advertising is important. However, it is far from being the only way you can run your rental properties successfully. In fact, ameliorating your relationship with your current tenants might be even more critical for your financial stability. 

Essentially, finding responsible tenants can be a long and painstaking process. Take into account that you can never be too sure if potential tenants intend to fulfil their rental duties solely based on their applications. Additionally, reviewing tenant applications can add to the amount of workload that you already have. In sum, you should work on keeping those tenants that you cooperate well with. 

Make an excellent first impression

Start building a good landlord-tenant relationship from day one. As we know, first impressions are essential. Be sure to behave cordially but still professionally during your first meeting with new tenants. 

This means you should be very clear and transparent when you discuss:

  • what the tenants’ rental duties are,
  • what you do not tolerate,
  • and most importantly, what you can do for them.

You must acknowledge your fair share of duties and responsibilities instead of focusing exclusively on what the tenants can and cannot do. Also, let them know that you are there to answer any questions or concerns that they might have.

Be honest and transparent and it will help you build an amazing relationship with your tenants.

A landlord interviewing potential tenants with a smile on her face, showing how to build an amazing relationship with your tenants

Set clear rules and boundaries

Naturally, you want to run your rental properties as smoothly as possible. Hence, your tenants should be well informed about what might not be allowed and what the consequences might be if they violate the rule. So, one way to build an amazing relationship with your tenants is to discuss your rules and terms openly.

By setting a level-playing field from the outset, you also establish an atmosphere of trust and respect for yourself and your property. And this does not mean that you are soft on them. Set some boundaries – clearly but fairly. Also, do not be intimidating or demanding while you are doing it.

Good property maintenance is important

It makes sense to invest in repairs and maintenance of your property to improve your relationship with your tenants. So, instead of investing in advertising to find new tenants, you might want to switch up your approach a little bit.

Investing your money in repairs and furniture will improve your current and future tenants’ quality of life. This is why, in the long term, it makes more sense to invest in improvements to your property than to rely on marketing to improve your property’s success.

These kinds of improvements will show your tenants that you genuinely care about their well-being. It is especially true if the renovation aims to fix those issues that had bothered your tenants in the past. Although some repairs or maintenance work may not be initially welcomed by the tenants currently occupying the premises, in the end, they will be thankful for your determination to improve the rental property. 

If you, however, intend to do a significant renovation, you might be struggling with storage space where you can place furniture and other items that stand in the way of construction work. So, renting a storage unit is the way to go. Of course, storage can be a solution to many problems when you lease property in Australia. Old and new tenants can use the rented storage unit to temporarily store some of their surplus belongings when they are moving in or out of your premises. Such an amenity can make you and your property stand out and win your points with your current and prospective renters. 

You can help your tenants move in or move out by providing access to your safe storage unit.

A family with child packing for moving out of a rental property in Australia 

Keep the distance

Once your new tenants have settled in, the best way to maintain good relations is to keep a reasonable distance from them. Of course, this does not mean you should literally avoid approaching them. What we mean is that you need to be mindful of your tenant’s personal space and privacy at all times.

Don’t invade your tenant’s privacy unless you have a compelling reason to knock on your tenant’s door and talk to them in person. Even if the matter is urgent, in Australia, it is common practice that you give your tenants a heads up at least 24 hours before you turn up at their door. 

Your tenants will surely appreciate you being so considerate. Also, keep in mind that they could take legal action if your visits or communication with them becomes too intrusive. 

Be friendly, but don’t be a friend

So, no matter how well you get along with your tenants, certain boundaries have to be set. It is not only good for the tenant’s sense of privacy – this is also good for your sense of self as a landlord. 

Try to keep your relationship with your tenants strictly professional.

A man shaking hands with a tenant 

As we have mentioned before, try not to blur the line and become too friendly with your tenants. If you start to perceive your tenants as friends, this might prevent you from using your unbiased judgment in matters that require you to be impartial. Likewise, your renters might lose the impression they can rely on you to solve serious legal and administrative problems.

Therefore, if you start drinking beer with your tenants regularly, you run the risk of undermining your role and reputation as a landlord. (Not to mention, some people might find your attempts to socialize as a violation of privacy rather than an attempt to build an amazing relationship with your tenants.)

Image Sources:

  • https://www.pexels.com/photo/man-and-woman-near-table-3184465/
  • https://www.pexels.com/photo/woman-in-brown-coat-sitting-beside-boy-in-blue-and-white-plaid-dress-shirt-7415100/
  • https://www.pexels.com/photo/young-happy-woman-smiling-and-talking-with-colleague-6457584/
  • Man in Black Suit Standing Beside Woman in Brown Coat · Free Stock Photo (pexels.com) 

Written By Sally Norton for Vogue Real Estate Australia

Asking many questions to your landlord is not always pleasant, and many people avoid it. The reason is, they want to be a good tenant who likes everything about the property and the lease. However, proper communication between the tenant and the landlord is the key to a successful collaboration. That’s why you need to learn about everything you can and make things better in the house. Here are the top questions to ask landlords when renting a home.

How long is the lease?

If you’re making any long-term plans, the first thing you should ask your potential landlord is about the length of the lease. It’s important to know about the lease plans of your landlord, so you can make your own. Also, be sure to ask about the long-term lease, like a 2 year or longer, if you need it. However, don’t expect a long-term lease at first. Most landlords do shorter contracts at first until they see that they’re satisfied with their tenants. However, if you really want to stay at the place for a longer period of time, make sure you ask about the long lease – it may work.

What’s included in the lease?

Make sure you find out all the details about your rental agreement. Don’t be shy to ask what’s included in the contract and the rental payment. Very often, rental payments include utility bills or some other maintenance. It’s very important to know what are your responsibilities other than paying the monthly rent.

a person signing a rental agreement
It’s important to know the details of your contract, so include this on the list of questions to ask landlords

Can I decorate the apartment?

Landlords have different policies when it comes to decorating the apartment – making holes in the walls, painting the walls, etc. Be sure to ask what’s their policy about it and if you need special permission to make any changes to the apartment.

Apartment maintenance

Apart from the apartment decoration, one of the top questions to ask landlords is about the urgent maintenance of the apartment. Sometimes, if anything happens in the apartment, you don’t need to fix it yourself.

Some landlords have agreements with certain contractors who take care of their property. Also, there’s another option of the property manager taking care of any issues in the building. Either way, be sure to ask your landlord everything about it before you actually need something to be fixed.

Can I have any pets?

Pet policy is one of the top questions to ask landlords when you need to move into a new apartment and want it to be pet-friendly. Depending on the building and the apartment, these can be very different. That’s why if you have a pet or plan to have one, make sure you ask your landlord about the pet policy on their property. This is also good to know about the other tenants in the building, especially if you have any allergies.

a dog in a pet-friendly apartment
One of the important questions to ask landlords is whether the place is pet-friendly.

Can I bring any guests?

One of the top questions to ask landlords is about who can visit you at the apartment and when. This is important for various reasons. You want to know if you can bring somebody for a sleepover, how long they can stay, can they use the building’s parking or any other amenities. Also, rules are good to know if any of your neighbors are having a party or something that can bother you.

Do I have insurance?

Insurance is one of the most important parts of your future stay in the new apartment. What’s essential to know is what’s actually included in the insurance in the tenancy agreement. Very often, it covers only the property, without your possessions. So, this is one of the most important questions to ask landlords and check if you need to take out an additional insurance policy.

Do you plan to sell the apartment and when?

It’s one of those questions to ask landlords that are a bit personal, but you need to ask it anyway. If you plan a long-term stay, you need to know if your landlord plans on selling the property. This will help you make some plans for your stay.

a question mark
Even though some of them seem personal, don’t be afraid to prepare the questions to ask landlords for extra safety.

Relocation

After you’ve found a good neighborhood and a perfect apartment, it’s time to start planning your relocation. Here are some tips for a having a stress-free and safe move into your new home:

  • write everything down – it’s essential to organize your move and write all the tasks down. A moving timeline will help you stay focused and productive so you can finish everything on time.
  • pack your items safely – make sure you have high-quality packing supplies when you start packing for the move. This will keep your items safe during transport.
  • hire moving professionals – skilled movers can help you have a safe relocation anywhere in the world. They will ensure a fast and stress-free move without you feeling tired and overwhelmed after it.
  • have a cleaning session – when moving into a new apartment, you want to make both your old place and your new one spotlessly clean. If you can’t make it on your own, arrange for professional cleaners to help you out.
  • update your address on time – don’t wait long until you update your address for the mail, subscriptions, and deliveries. It’s good to do it in advance, so you can start receiving all the mail to your new address.

Conclusion

Moving into a new apartment is not always easy and stress-free. That’s why you need to do whatever you can to make things as smooth as possible. After you get the answers for the top questions to ask landlords, you will know all the details about your move and be ready if anything unexpected happens.

 

If you are renting, you probably know that is a battle that never stops. You are always in search of a nicer place to live under better conditions. And the most common question is ‘how much do you pay?’. You have overheard that question probably a million times at dinner parties, on dates, and at work. Our monthly rent is something that always occupies us. Beside the endless search for lower rent, renters also have to deal with the fear of eviction and price increaseBut although rents seem to rise higher and higher each year, there is always a way to find a good deal. For this purpose, we have made renter’s guide 2019, so follow these steps on your way to a better renting experience. 

Searching for a place  

Searching for a place to rent can be quite a challenge, especially if you are doing it for the first time. Since that is time-consuming and exhausting process, you need to make a plan and make sure you are managing your time wisely. Also, a good idea is to ask someone with experience for advice. Longtime renters know approximately what to look for and where to look for it, as well as the price range.  

Determine your budget 

First things first – figure out what the amount you would be able to spend on renting costs on a monthly basis is. When calculating this, have in mind that you should always leave some money for unforeseen circumstances, because they do happen. A lot. Additionally, you will probably have to put down a security deposit and an application fee. So, keep that in mind and plan ahead.  

Go through listings of properties for lease and compare prices
Go through listings of properties for lease and compare prices

Pick a neighbourhood 

Although you certainly have some preferences already, our advice is to pick a neighbourhood close to where you workBecause at rush-hour, it can take much more time to drive back homeAnd you can use this time in better ways, right? Your commute can affect your daily life and free time big timeAnd before you decide, go through listings of properties for lease, compare prices and make a selection of places or neighbourhoods you can afford.  

Play it smart 

Some researches show that renters are likely to find better deals during the fall and winter months when fewer people are moving. One of the tips from our renter’s guide is to, if you have that possibility, wait for the fall.  

Manage your expectations 

Depending on the area you are looking for, apartment hunting can be pretty intense because of stiff competition. If you are looking for a neighbourhood with apartments or houses in short supply, bidding can become a war. Sometimes, renters even choose to pay more than the listed price, in order to get the place they want. But, unless you want specifically that one place in that neighbourhood, there is really no reason for you to pay more. There are plenty of neighbourhoods with affordable prices, so maybe it would be better to skip.   

The best way to explore the places for rent is on foot
The best way to explore the places for rent is on foot

Find a house or apartment that suits you 

Exploring neighbourhoods on foot is definitely the best way to do that, if you have a chanceLandlords often like to rent to locals, so you can stumble upon a property that is not listed onlineThe second-best resource is certainly the internet and you will get the best results by using both. Look for reliable listing sites for rentals, and start making a list of properties that interest you. If you want to be on the safe side, you can always hire a professional real estate agency to help you out.  

See it with your own eyes, if you have a chance 

Once you find the property you like, contact the landlord or your realtor and ask to set up a time to view it. Seeing the place for yourself is key to ensuring you will not get scammed or deceived by an online listing. In case you are searching for a property from elsewhere and you don’t have a chance to visit, ask a friend or real estate agent to do that for you.  

Don’t wait too long to apply 

Don’t wait too long to apply – better submit an application form as soon as possibleEspecially if the market is tight in the chosen area, landing your dream apartment can come down to being the first one to apply. When you start filling the application, have key pieces of information handy. 

After you sign the lease 

Most likely, a landlord will require a deposit at the lease-signing. The deposit can range from some small amount to two months’ rentdepending on the landlord or the deal they have with the real estate agency. Have in mind that every deposit should be refundable. However, some landlords will try to find reasons not to refund part or all of the deposit, and that is why it is very important to know your rightsIf you are not sure about that, check out the Tenancy Union website to get more information. They usually justify it with cleaning or wear-and-tear, but if you clean the place yourself and there is no damage, you shouldn’t accept it.  

A few personal details are enough to make the new place feel like home
A few personal details are enough to make the new place feel like home

Renter’s guide 2019  

Once all this is behind you, it’s time to relax and adjust. Keep in mind that a few personal details will make the new place feel like homeDisplay few photos, put your books on shelves and cover your bed with your favourite sheets. Take a walk through the neighbourhood and introduce yourself to your new neighbours. In the blink of an eye, you will have your favourite coffee shop and restaurant. People will start saying hi, and you will know you are finally home. We hope our renter’s guide has helped you and that you will enjoy the new chapter of your life!