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5 Ways to Reduce Tenant Turnover and Expensive Vacancies

Finding tenants and filling vacancies can be a stressful and time-consuming process, from creating your listing to organizing viewings and collecting applications. However, it’s also one of the most important parts of being a landlord. Every day the property sits empty is lost revenue.

As such, landlords need efficient processes to find and secure great tenants in order to minimize expensive vacancies. In this article, we take a look at what you need to know in order to reduce tenant turnover and efficiently find new tenants.

1. Create and share a quality listing

Your rental listing will consist of two important parts, the written description (read our tips on writing the perfect property description) and the photography (read our tips on getting great photography).

Once you’ve got these assets it’s time to decide where to share your listing. You can create a free rental listing with Landlord Studio. But we also recommend sharing your listing on sites like Zillow, Zumper, and Facebook Marketplace.

Using sites like these allows you to quickly and efficiently get your listing in front of thousands of prospective tenants and you’ll quickly see enquiries coming in.

Related: 12 Free Rental Listings Sites To Advertise Your Property

2. Manage and screen tenant applicants efficiently

In order to keep vacancies to a minimum, you’ll need to efficiently manage your tenant application and selection. From dealing with inquiries to arranging viewings and then collecting and screening applicants.

It’s important that you handle your applicants efficiently. Not responding promptly, for example, may result in tenants assuming the property is already rented and looking elsewhere.

With Landlord Studio you can streamline this process by collecting and prescreening applicants using our inbuilt prescreening questionnaire. This allows you to quickly see who meets your minimum criteria and then either reject the applicant or efficiently run a tenant screening report on them using our tenant screening feature.

Our tenant applications system is designed to help you make an informed decision and secure the best tenants fast.

3. Have a strong lease agreement

The lease is the legal document that outlines the rights and responsibilities of both the landlord and the tenant. It allows the tenant to occupy and use the property for a specific period of time under certain conditions.

In this way, the lease forms a layer of legal protection for both parties and ensures that both landlord and tenant are clear in their roles towards the property. For example, there might be a joint and several liability clauses, or the details of the landlord’s pet policy. Having the rules clearly outlined upfront will help ensure neither party breaks them.

Related: 12 Must Have Renting Documents For Landlords

real estate lease sign

4. Welcome letter and welcome package

Once you’ve secured an awesome tenant you want to make sure the moving-in process goes off without a hitch.

Sending through a detailed welcome letter that outlines the key things your tenant needs to know about the house is a great start.

Your welcome letter should provide the following information:

  • Next steps and move-in details;
  • Setting up utilities;
  • Reminder about renters insurance;
  • How to collect rent online
  • How to report maintenance issues;
  • Information on garbage collection;
  • Parking information – if relevant;
  • Neighborhood guidance;
  • Contact info.

Following that, something that often yields great ROI is leaving a welcome package for your tenants upon move-in.

Include your welcome letter as well as a few other things like:

  • Cleaning supplies;
  • Information about the area;
  • Local take-out restaurant menus;
  • A small appropriate gift.

5. Avoid missed and late rent

Late rent is the leading cause of evictions in the US and these in turn can lead to long vacancy periods. Thankfully, there are a few things that you can do to help mitigate the risk of late rent. First, you need to ensure you have a thorough tenant screening process. And second, you can employ tools like Landlord Studio to streamline the rent collection process.

With Landlord Studio your tenants can set up automatic payments to ensure they never forget to pay again. Additionally, landlords can collect deposits and tenant payable expenses and tenants can view historic and upcoming payments via the tenant portal.

Payments are made via the ACH network and delivered directly into your bank account. The process is secure, fast, and affordable.

Find out more about Online Rent Collection with Landlord Studio.

6. Go easy when raising rents

Nobody likes it when you raise their rent. That being said, most people, especially if they are experienced renters will know that you’re going to increase rent yearly. The problem is their paychecks may not go up every year or they only get minor raises. If you raise the rent too much, or too frequently you may price out your great tenants, which may lead to tenants looking elsewhere.

This being said, you do want to ensure you keep your rent at an appropriate market value. For this purpose, small incremental increases over the years are going to be better than increasing the rent by a large amount all at once.

7. Efficient property maintenance

A run-down apartment isn’t going to make people want to stay. If you want long-term tenants you must ensure the property is looked after. Peeling paint? Old leaky faucets?

These things aren’t vital to fix, and many tenants won’t even complain. Instead, they’ll just move out as soon as possible. If you want your tenant to stay for longer, invest in a little ongoing maintenance today instead of waiting for someone to complain.

Find out more about Property Maintenance Management with Landlord Studio.

Final words: Professional property management

Landlord Studio is an end-to-end property management solution designed to help save you time and money. Find and screen tenants, collect rent, track income and expenses, manage property maintenance and make tax time a breeze with custom real estate reports including our Schedule E report.

Find out more about income and expense tracking with Landlord Studio.

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Ben Luxon

Ben is the editor and lead writer for Landlord Studio. He has worked with real estate professionals all over the world and written educational articles on tech, real estate, and financial growth for sites such as Forbes, TechBullion, and Business Magazine.

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