Unfortunately, it happens. Even with the best of screening processes in place, there can still be times when you must deal with “nightmare” tenants. You know the ones. If you haven’t had to deal with them personally, you likely know someone who has…or you, yourself, will someday if you continue to own rental property.
When your turn comes along, there are some tips to keep in mind for working with these individuals – and conducting your dealings with these tenants sooner rather than later can save you a great deal of time, money, and frustration going forward.
First, it is always a good idea for landlords to have some type of written policy in terms of the rules that should be followed. While you may have certain items listed in the lease, it can be beneficial to also have an additional list of Do’s and Don’ts for your tenants to refer to.
It can often be difficult for tenants to follow the rules if there aren’t any rules set forth – and, in some cases, a tenant that may start out seemingly ok, might soon discover that they can push the envelope if you let them get by with little things here and there.
For instance, if the rent is due on the first of each month, then you need to enforce this policy – such as with late fees – if or when the rent payment is late. Otherwise, you could find that a tenant who was just a day or two late with the rent last month, will be a week late next month, and two weeks late on the month after that.
If things do get out of hand – for example, with tenants not paying on time (or not paying at all) – or if there are other adverse issues such as excessive damage to your property, don’t be afraid to remove the tenants from the property altogether.
Even having your property sit empty for the time that it takes to re-rent it can be less costly than allowing a problem to go on. And, if you do need to move forward with an eviction, it is always a good idea to hire a good, qualified attorney who can get the process done and move on.
For some real estate investors, “evil” tenants may be enough to have you putting a For Sale sign in the front yard, and walking away from real estate investing for good. But you don’t have to give up what could be nice, regular cash flow, as well as an appreciating asset, in order to avoid dealing with renters – regardless of whether they’re bad or good.
The good news is that, by hiring a property manager, you can still obtain these great financial benefits, but have someone else handle the day-to-day management and maintenance of your units. Moving over to this type of a win-win situation may not only provide you with time to do other things, it could very well be an ideal long-term strategy for rental income, as well as a larger net worth.
For more information on partnering with our property management team in the Orlando or surrounding area, Contact Us.