Wanted: good tenants

House For RentDespite ups and downs in the rental market across much of the country, landlords would prefer a good tenant over higher rent.

 
More than three-quarters of landlords consider finding the best tenant a bigger priority than rental income, according to realestate.com.au’s Landlords’ Needs and Wants Research. And 82 per cent believe getting the top tenant is more important than filling a property as quickly as possible.
 
According to the report, the ‘dream tenant’ is one who pays their rent on time (37 per cent) and treats the property like it is their own home (38 per cent). 
 
So how do you secure a good tenant? Firstly, use a property manager (84 per cent of landlords do) and tap into their experience, expertise and renter database. Once that’s sorted, here are five more tips: 
 

1. Looks count

The way the property presents is paramount – a fresh lick of paint in a neutral shade can do wonders, as can updating or professionally cleaning hard surfaces, carpets and grouting. Keep on top of maintenance and repairs. If you are going to ‘stage’ the property, chose a décor style that will appeal to your target renter. 
 

2. Price realistically

The rent needs to be competitive. While renters may pay more for a desirable home, don’t price the property out of the market. A property manager’s guidance is invaluable and online resources can be consulted to see what similar homes are renting for. 
 

3. Stretch it out 

Consider offering longer leases. Leases for 18 months to two years could help secure a good tenant. 
 

4. Be visible and available

Make sure your advertising includes good photos of the internal spaces and well-written copy. Cover all your bases and use the mediums that are popular with your target renter: flyers, online listings etc. Tailor your home opens to suit potential renters: mid-week and evenings. 
 

5. Sweeten the deal

If the property is in a really tight rental market, consider what sort of ‘bonus’ may be offered to entice a good tenant to sign up. A free week’s rent, a gift voucher, free Wi-Fi, allowing pets, installing air-conditioning, and including gardening or cleaning services. 
 
Once you’ve found a great potential tenant, do the right thing by them. Some renters mistakenly think their landlord’s insurance will cover their possessions – a good landlord or property manager will be quick to correct this oversight and suggest renters protect their contents with TenantCover
 
There’s competition to secure a great tenant and looking out for them could be the thing that sets your property apart from the rest when they do their checks to see if they should deal with you!