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Retaining tenants is always optimal for residential and commercial landlords. Unless you own a small rental property and know your residents personally, you might wonder what you can do to make them sign a new lease when their current contract expires. Here’s what renters love and hate about landlords so you can make them happy and keep them around longer.


1. They Love Frequent Communication

Everybody appreciates open and ongoing communication. It creates a foundation of trust between two people, especially a tenant and their landlord. No matter what type of rental property you own, it’s crucial to send emails and updates to your renters frequently.

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Residential tenants may need to know when the weather drops below freezing and how to protect their plumbing from bursting due to ice. Commercial renters also appreciate knowing before repairs or renovations begin on their building. The work could potentially force customers to visit on another date or not at all. A quick email with precise wording goes a long way in helping people love their rental space.


2. They Hate Surprise Fees

The average rent increased by 8.5% from 2021 to 2022, so tenants aren’t surprised that it may continue rising in the future. At the same time, they will hate a landlord who increases their rent or additional fees without warning. They’ll need time to adjust their budgets or consider looking for rental space elsewhere if they can’t afford the rent. Consult the rental laws where your property operates to check that your warning emails abide by the timeframe required in tenant protection laws.


3. They Love Landlords Who Renovate

Renovations are almost always welcome in residential flats. Newly installed windows that keep cold air out or an updated HVAC unit make everyone more comfortable. It can also increase the property’s value, boosting rental fees and profits for landlords with long-term tenants. Residents may not mind the increased rent as much because they’re getting a better quality of life for their payments.

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Updating commercial spaces may also seem straightforward. Replacing carpets and repainting walls is always a pleasant upgrade for tenants, but they’ll appreciate a landlord who thinks beyond basic projects. Adding cupboards or cabinets provides space for more merchandise, which meets the needs of growing businesses before they even consider moving to a more extensive property.


4. They Hate Unorganized Contractors

Most landlords work with local landscaping companies to keep the property pristine for renters and anyone who passes by. Tenants may start to resent their landlord if those landscapers arrive on different days and work everchanging hours. It’s your job as the property owner to stay updated on the landscaping team’s schedule and communicate it to your tenants.

Otherwise, lawnmowers and strimmers might interrupt phone calls or videoconferences. Send a quick email when working with a new landscaping team or any renovation contractors so your tenants know when they can expect loud work outside their windows.


5. They Love Thoughtful Surprises

Unsuccessful landlords don’t demonstrate care for their tenants. The smallest act goes a long way, especially if you have multiple rental properties and management teams between you and your tenants.

Consider leaving a small gift bag on a tenant’s doorstep with a card when it’s their birthday. A personal signature shows your renters that you recognize and value their timely payments. Cards and small gifts can also appease tenants after extending their lease, cementing their appreciation for the property and the person who owns it.


6. They Hate Legal Threats

Some renters will be more difficult than others. They may cause excess noise late at night or consistently break the rules regarding trash disposal. You might feel tempted to threaten legal action any time a renter breaks a rule, but that only makes good tenants turn against you.

Flippantly mentioning the possibility of legal action tells renters they’re disposable. They signed up for your flat or commercial space to carve a happy future for themselves. Fearing eviction for accidentally parking in the wrong spot puts too much pressure on them, which could encourage them to leave.

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It’s also worth noting that the average eviction takes 44.5 weeks or 10 months to result in repossession. That’s more time than many landlords can spend on legal fees and court visitations. It’s always better to work things out with tenants before taking legal action, even in word only.


7. They Love Immediate Action

Broken water pipes are a more serious problem than a busted light fixture. Your maintenance team will attend to emergencies first, but that doesn’t mean less concerning issues can get pushed back by a day or two.

When minor issues arise on the property, renters appreciate a landlord who takes immediate action. Go out of your way to contact the maintenance crew or assign someone the job of delivering that new lightbulb or air filter. This shows you care about your tenant’s comfort, which anyone will appreciate.


8. They Hate Business Relationships

Landlords and tenants have business relationships, but renters don’t like property managers who remind them of that. Instead of making the relationships with your renters strictly professional, put a personal touch on their leasing experience whenever possible.

Leave a welcome letter on the countertop of your newest commercial renter or the mailbox of a residential tenant. Send a mass email to your renters celebrating a new tenant who just moved in. Landlords can even establish monthly newsletters cheering on tenants who send updates with their personal success stories, like getting a promotion or adopting a new dog.

Your rental property is your livelihood, but it’s a home for your tenants. Connecting with them and maintaining that bond is essential for becoming a beloved landlord.


9. They Love Local Event Emails

Most of the time, new renters will come from another city, region or country. They won’t know much about the area beyond why they moved there. Landlords have a unique opportunity to help their tenants establish roots by sending local event emails.

Send an update email at the beginning of each week or month. Mention upcoming events, like concerts, shows or festivals. Landlords with commercial properties can also include business opportunities such as networking expos or conferences that draw people into your city who may need their services. The extra messaging creates a casual, neighbourly atmosphere that tenants might miss in a busy world where everyone comes and goes.


10. They Hate Seeing Their Flat Listed

When a renter sends their required move-out notice, they’ll still have time to find their next flat or business space. They won’t move out right away, but many landlords immediately list their rental unit. It may help your business find the next renter as soon as possible, but it can feel like a cold shoulder to the renter still in that space.

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Furthermore, if a landlord has hired a letting agent try to avoid the agent turning up at the property announced to begin the process of advertising the property.

Avoid making this mistake, and your tenants won’t feel like you’re passive-aggressively kicking them out. Even if they have had a great experience with you during their lease, they’ll spread the word and post negative reviews online for this type of treatment.

It’s best to wait until closer to their move-out date to post when a unit will be available to rent. Given that agents are seeing residential rental properties lease to tenants in 24 hours or less, you shouldn’t have a problem filling the space within a week or two of it becoming vacant.


11. They Love Innovative Ideas

Like any career, landlords can fall into a routine that keeps their businesses running smoothly. Tenants like properties owners who don’t have new monthly issues with things like billing or maintenance, but they’ll also grow to dislike their rental unit if the place gets boring.

Landlords will form better relationships with their tenants and become more competitive if they always strive for innovative ideas. Schedule food trucks to stop by your property each month to treat your commercial or residential renters. Host a light show for tenants during the holiday season or schedule a puppy petting event to lower their stress during university exam periods.

Offering something that renters can’t get anywhere else is an excellent way to form better relationships with them and retain the tenants who always pay their bills on time.


12. They Hate Unclear Move-Out Policies

People need to know precisely how to handle the move-out process when it’s time to move onto another phase of their life. The policies regarding notices, fees, repairs and how they get their deposit back should already exist in your community’s standard lease, but ensure the wording is clear.

The last thing tenants want is surprise fees or requirements just before moving out. They’re already overwhelmed with scheduling a moving truck and transporting their belongings. Detail everything in their lease and contact anyone who sends their notice to offer your time if they have any questions.


Learn Why Tenants Love and Hate Landlords

Tenants love and hate many things about landlords, but they’re all manageable. Keep these tips in mind, whether you already own a rental property or are considering starting one. You’ll avoid common problems and make your renters happier, leading to greater professional success.

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