Landlording & Rental Properties

The 8 Things I Want Every Tenant to Know

Expertise: Landlording & Rental Properties, Real Estate Investing Basics, Flipping Houses, Business Management, Personal Development, Mortgages & Creative Financing, Real Estate News & Commentary
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Tenants come with differing backgrounds and life experiences.

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Some have been renters for years and know the drill. For others, it may be the first time away from mom and dad and out on their own. No matter what their renting experience may be, here are some things that I want every tenant to know.

1. You Need Renter’s Insurance

Tenants should understand that bad things happen and that the landord’s insurance policy will not cover their loses. Renter’s insurance is cheap and well worth the money.

Related: Should You Put Your Rental Properties in an LLC?

2. I Have Bills to Pay, Too

The way I pay those bills is with the rent you pay me. I have heard all of your sob stories and unfortunately there is nothing I can say to the bank that will get them to cut me a break. So I am sorry if I seem like a hard ass, but your rent is due when your rent is due.

3. I Am Not Going to Try and Take Advantage of You

It is not in my best interest to do so. I want a long and uneventful landlord/tenant relationship because turnover kills my bottom line. I will not get that if I am constantly trying to get one over on you. If you treat me and my property with respect I will do the same to you.



4. Do Not Wait Until the Last Minute to Tell Me Something Needs to be Repaired

My repair people like to have weeks-ends off as well. If you wait until Friday afternoon to tell me your air conditioning is out, guess what you are not likely to have this week-end.

5. I Will Fix Things, So Please Call Me!

It is in my best interest to fix things and keep my property maintained. Little repairs if left alone will eventually add up to big repairs and big money. I don’t like to spend big money.   So call me about the little things. I will repair them.

6. Your Neighbors Do Not Like Your Loud Music Either

Remember when you complained to me about your neighbor’s loud music? It is a two way street.

Related: What Are Your House Rules?

7. Some Problems Are Just Hard to Fix

They take time and thus may not get repaired right away. We may have to wait on a part. We may have to diagnose and trouble shoot for a few days. It may seem like we are doing nothing, but we really are trying to fix the problem. Be patient.


8. Mess Leads to More Mess

Those bugs you called to complain about, well I went by to take a look and noticed the overflowing trash can and pile of dirty dishes in the sink. Let’s try cleaning that up first and then we will talk about the bug problem.

Like I said, tenants come with a myriad of experiences behind them. Some are timid and shy and don’t want to make a fuss. Others have been screwed by a previous landlord. Some have just never been out in the real world and not had mommy to clean up after them. As a landlord, you will run across all kinds. No matter what kind you rent to, make sure they get the above list.

[Editor’s Note: We are republishing this article to help all of the landlords who found our site more recently.]

So what is on your list?

Be sure to leave your comments below!

Kevin Perk is co-founder of Kevron Properties, LLC with his wife Terron and has been involved in real estate investing for 10 years. Kevin invests in and manages rental properties in Memphis, TN and is a past president and vice-president of the local REIA group, the Memphis Investors Group.
    Peter Mckernan Residential Real Estate Agent from Irvine, CA
    Replied over 4 years ago
    Hello Kevin, Great article about these simple, but clear guidelines on how the relationship should be between a renter and a landlord. I would add to the list: do not ask, or start to preform a repair or rehab on a certain part of the rental thinking that this question/action will be acceptable. The tenant is not a licensed and insured contractor, so when that repair or rehab goes bad the tenant will push all responsibility onto the owner, and stick try to stick the owner with the bill. This happened to a property that I am currently managing. The tenant put in a new toilet without confirmed permission, it started leaking, and they tried to blame it on the owner for faulty pipes. (Total bill: $5,000).
    Patsy Waldron Rental Property Investor from Orlando, FL
    Replied over 4 years ago
    Wow!! Are you serious- a tenant changed a toilet?!? I wouldn’t do that in my own house, let along someone else’s property!
    Peter Mckernan Residential Real Estate Agent from Irvine, CA
    Replied over 4 years ago
    Yep! It has been so intense since!
    Mario Mormile Investor/ Real Estate Agent from Burton, OH
    Replied over 4 years ago
    Thanks for the article Kevin. This list is a great reminder and a must to apply. Whether a landlord is timid or not afraid to speak their mind, having someone (yourself, an assistant, or property manager) convey these things to the potential or current tenant is very much appropriate. 🙂
    Kevin Perk Rental Property Investor from Memphis, TN
    Replied over 4 years ago
    Mario, Thanks for reading and commenting, Kevin
    Replied about 4 years ago
    To follow up on a few comments. How many people let their tenants know not only they are owner but that they also own other properties?