Everything You Need to Know About the 1031 Exchange

Everything You Need to Know About the 1031 Exchange

Looking to sell your investment property in Seattle, Washington? You should consider making use of a 1031 exchange.

One famous quote repeated time and time again timelessly holds true: “There are only two things certain in life—death and taxes.” As a property owner, you can relate to this statement, paying taxes and fees on a periodic basis.

Selling your Seattle investment property as a property owner will rack up a combination of several state and federal taxes. However, one option exists whereby you can avoid capital gain taxes on your Seattle property.

This window of opportunity was granted to investment property owners by Section 1031 of the Internal Revenue Code (IRC). It allows proprietors of this class of property to defer taxes, given that certain provisions have been met. 1031 exchanges are also known as like-kind exchanges or starker exchanges.

Provisions and Conditions by the IRS

The proceeds of selling of the investment property must be reinvested in a similar class of property. A common question among property owners and developers is whether flipped properties meet this threshold.

The answer is no. The rules under section 1031 clearly prohibit the inclusion of properties bought for the purposes of resale. For such a property, you will have to meet the full state and federal taxes.

As stated above, a 1031 exchange is also known as a like-kind exchange. The term though needs some deeper interpretation. The definition of investment property has been expanded to involve properties that are being used for trade or other business needs.

That said, you can exchange an office building for a farm. Using the interpretation above, you can see that both properties are used for trade purposes. The term “like-kind” allows for a number of interesting combinations.

like kind properties

The benefits of the exchange do not apply to buyers and sellers of personal homes. Vacation homes are also included herein, since they are used for personal use.

The use of a property might be unique and not be mentioned in the provisions given above. We recommend that you consult a reputable tax specialist who can advise you accordingly.

The Types of 1031 Exchange

Simultaneous 1031 Exchange

This is one that occurs on the same day. The investor relinquishes his property and closes on the replacement property concurrently. Prior research had to be done on possible replacements.

Delayed 1031 Exchange

As a property owner, you would want your new property to have similar amenities or provide similar utility to the previous one, if not better. Once sold, the investor searches studiously for the replacement. It is the most common type.

Reverse 1031 Exchange

For this one, a bank or financial institution is involved. The property will be bought first, and the monies repaid after the transfer goes through. Investment properties typically have higher risk than normal and as a result, most institutions won’t touch such an option.

The Timing of the Exchange

After you have sold off your investment real estate, Section 1031 of the IRC gives you 45 calendar days to identify three possible replacement properties. It goes without saying that the replacement properties must be like-kind. The 45 days is also inclusive of weekends and holidays.

Failure to stick within the prescribed time limit means that your exchange will be disqualified. Once disqualified, the tax benefits will be declared null and void. Corresponding taxes, therefore, have to be paid.

void tax benefits

Once you have narrowed it down, the exchange must be completed either within 180 calendar days or before the due date for the tax year in which the previous property was sold; whichever comes earlier. The count of the 180 days starts from the day you transfer your property to the buyer.

The Role of a Qualified Intermediary

The IRS Rules necessitate that a 1031 exchange must be carried out with the help of a Qualified Intermediary (QI). Section 1031 specifies that a family member cannot serve as your QI and neither can someone who qualifies as your ‘agent.’ This includes your real estate agent, broker or attorney.

The QI plays a critical role in the exchange. It is the QI’s duty to hold the proceedings for the sale, purchase the replacement property and transfer the title to you. There are a number of legal complexities to be handled.

It is recommended to choose a professional Qualified Intermediary. Errors and omissions, whether in regard to the deadlines or other provisions, will result in payment of taxes to both the state and the county.

Boot

During the transfer of the like-kind property, the buyer may receive money or other receivables that are not like-kind in nature. Such additions are recognized and allowed for in a 1031 exchange. The technical term is ‘boot.’ Other sources of boot also include mortgage reduction, property tax proration and the use of sale proceeds for invalid closing costs.

the boot

It is only the property that is considered tax-free. The boot will automatically be taxed. Therefore, it is always recommended for the investor to trade up. Trading down will automatically result in certain receivables, negating the tax-free nature of the 1031 exchange.

Reporting

The 1031 exchange should go through successfully and as a property investor, you will have experienced no gains or losses. The last item to go through is the reporting of the exchange. You will require a Form 8824 for this.

If there is a boot involved, it will also need to be reported. Depending on the type of the boot, you will need a Form 8949, Form 4797 or Schedule D (Form 1040).

Conclusion: Everything You Need to Know About the 1031 Exchange

A number of real estate investors are making use of the 1031 exchange. Throughout the years, it has proved to be a highly efficient tool for legally deferring taxes.

If you are selling an investment property in Seattle, you may want to consider the advantages of a 1031 exchange. You can reach out to us at T-Square Properties, as we are experienced real estate providers who can help. Our expertise and experience may prove crucial as you traverse the technical, but profitable conditions of the exchange.

Reasons to Invest in Snohomish County Real Estate

Reasons to Invest in Snohomish County Real Estate

Snohomish County, with a population of 822,083, ranks as the third most populous county in the state of Washington. Its largest city is Everett, which also happens to be the county seat. Snohomish is part of the Seattle-Tacoma-Belleview metropolitan area.

Moreover, the real estate market in Snohomish County is currently sought-after. Among other things, the interest rates are low, properties are quickly appreciating in value, and there is low inventory.

If you are looking to invest in Snohomish real estate, now is the time. In this article, we’ll give you 5 reasons why you should invest in Snohomish County real estate.

Reason #1: Data shows that Snohomish County is a great place in which to invest

The following is some data that shows why Snohomish County is a good place to invest in right now:

  • Home prices are on an upward trajectory. Albeit slowly, home prices are rising. The slow rate can be attributed to the current COVID-19 pandemic that has taken a toll on most economies in the country. That said, experts are all optimistic of a quick rebound sometime in the future.
  • Investing in Snohomish real estate can help you enjoy a myriad of tax benefits. Even with the recent changes to the tax laws, tax rates still tend to favor homeowners, and owning a home can be a good tax shelter.
  • Real estate inventory is still low. Currently, there aren’t many adequate homes to go around right now. This low supply means higher prices. So, if you are lucky to buy a home right now, it means that it may appreciate significantly in value over the next couple of years.

low property inventory

  • The interest rates are low compared to what they were a few years ago. According to various studies, interest rates are just slightly over 3 percent for both 15-year- and 30-year fixed-rate mortgages. So, again, this is a good time to invest in Snohomish County real estate.
  • There are plenty of desirable neighborhoods, especially if you are looking to buy a rental property. The neighborhoods include Arlington, Stanwood, Everett, Lake Stevens, and Marysville. Other areas worth considering include Redmond, Edmonds, Bellevue, and Sammamish.

According to data, if you are thinking about real estate investing in Washington State, you should start by checking out Snohomish County.

Reason #2: You may be able to diversify your income

What would you do if, for whatever reason, you lost your current job? For many, this would mean a heavy financial challenge. You may find yourself even struggling to pay your bills and meet basic needs.

That’s why income diversification is key. You’ll be able to continue living your life even when you lose an income stream.

Investing in real estate can allow you to earn passive income for many years to come. Not only will you be able to make more money, but you’ll also have peace of mind knowing that you have stable finances.

Reason #3: You may become exposed to new networking opportunities

You have probably heard it before – “it’s not what you know, it’s who you know.” This is true when it comes to the world of business.

real estate networking

When you become a landlord, you’ll be able to meet all kinds of people from bankers to tenants to real estate agents. These professional connections will benefit you.

Reason #4: You can become fully self-employed

Are you thinking of becoming a landlord so you can quit your day job? Self-employment gives one the freedom to become their own boss. Plus, owning a rental property can enable you to achieve just that.

When you become a landlord, you get to call the shots in every aspect of your rental investment. From the tenants you choose to the vendors and contractors you hire, you’ll be the one who makes all the decisions.

Reason #5: A rental property tends to be a stable investment

Even in a struggling economy, people will need a home. When times get tough, taking a mortgage to buy a home will be the last thing on their minds. So, they are still going to be those who rent.

That said, a rental investment is not a foolproof way to gain wealth. To succeed, you’ll need to understand the ins and outs of how the business works. Among other things, you’ll need to know:

How to quickly fill your vacant units

You see, a vacant unit is a money pit. Besides not expecting an income at the end of the month, you’ll need to look for money elsewhere to meet other expenses. Such expenses include property taxes and mortgage repayments.

How to screen prospective tenants

No two tenants are created the same. Some are every Snohomish County landlord’s dream while others are the exact opposite.

tenant screening

Having a proper screening process can help you avoid renting to potential problem tenants.

How to set the right rent amount

Yes, maximizing your income may be your ultimate goal. However, this doesn’t mean you should overcharge your tenants, as that may make your property less appealing to prospects. As a novice landlord, it’d be in your best interest to hire a professional who can properly decide on a rental rate.

How to respond to tenant maintenance requests

This is a big one; it can make or break your chances of succeeding in the Snohomish County real estate market. Making sure your tenants are always listened to, especially regarding requests for repair or maintenance, goes a long way.

If you don’t have experience doing any of these things, hiring a professional may be in your best interest. A professional property management company will help you in all management aspects. From finding desirable tenants to collecting rent to responding to tenant maintenance requests, you won’t have to worry about a thing.

Just make sure to hire the right property management company!

 

There you have it—5 solid reasons why you should invest in Snohomish County real estate. If you are a first-time investor, hiring a professional may be in your best interest. Our team at T-Square Properties, for example, will help you invest in the right property and avoid making potentially costly pitfalls.

Best Areas to Invest in Snohomish County

Best Areas to Invest in Snohomish County

Are you looking to invest in Snohomish County real estate?

Real estate investments carry tremendous potential in terms of sustainable wealth creation and monthly passive income. However, this can fall through if you don’t pick a great area to invest in.

Snohomish County is a high-potential area for property investments. Regardless if you are just starting to build your portfolio or you already have extensive experience, this part of the Pacific Northwest is worth consideration.

There are many great areas to invest in Snohomish County. In the following paragraphs, we here at T-Square Properties will list just some of these areas. Additionally, you’ll learn about why it’s a good idea to put your investment money in Everett and its surrounding areas.

Snohomish County Real Estate Market

Before going over the best areas for property investments, we’ll do a quick rundown of the main reasons for making investments in Snohomish County.

The industrial developments and economy of Snohomish County are financially healthy. For instance, the Boeing 787 Dreamliner, together with other models, is constructed in a gigantic aircraft factory in Everett. Thanks to its economic strength, Snohomish County home values have been going up significantly.

Everett, WA is the largest city in Snohomish County. The area has top-class educational opportunities, outdoor recreation trails, and over thirty city parks. Plus, you should consider its proximity to Seattle; it’s only 25 miles north of this huge metro area.

Sharing a border with King County means you can reap the benefits of being close to a major metro area: Seattle-Tacoma-Bellevue. The local job market is strong and the tech jobs attract talent from across the county.

 

snohomish county property data

Where to Invest in Snohomish County

Every county comes with good and bad areas for property investments. Since Snohomish County carries an overall strong potential, you should focus on what type of renters you’re trying to get.

After you have locked in your target group, it’s time to reflect on the unique conditions of the communities available to you. We are going to make this task easier by listing some of the top investor picks in the County.

Arlington

Arlington is a superb community in the Seattle Metro Area. It’s around 40 miles north of the City. Plenty of employment options exist for locals because the aviation industry generates a steady need for workers.

However, people living in Arlington aren’t necessarily working in the same town. For instance, some of the residents work in Seattle and use Arlington as their home base to beat Seattle’s astronomical rent prices.

The local housing market has shown a steady appreciation over the years. When you look at the county averages, Arlington offers comparatively lower-than-average home prices. That economic situation may offer a significant return on investment from an investment point of view.

Stanwood

The bedroom community of Stanwood is another popular option among people who work in Seattle but choose a cheaper city when it comes to housing. Compared to Seattle, the home prices are considerably low.

snohomish county home values

Similar to Arlington, the home values have mostly appreciated over the years. Commuting to Seattle takes more time, though; Stanwood is located around 50 miles north of the largest city in Washington State.

If you are looking to invest in a city that is on the smaller side, then Stanwood may be a good bet. The population is about 7,000 people. Amtrak’s Cascades service provides a rail link between Downtown Stanwood, Seattle, and Vancouver.

Everett

The largest city in the County is Everett, and it carries a huge property investment potential. Many of the Snohomish County residents regard Everett as the county’s main source of employment.

Everett has a wide variety of neighborhoods to choose from. Some of these communities are mainly residential, while others feature an attractive mix of commercial and residential estates. Here are some of the notable Everett, WA areas to invest in:

  • Northwest Everett: This neighborhood includes the Everett Community College Campus, making it a great pick for student-oriented rental property investments. The area covers a historic district as well.
  • Bayside: As one of the most important neighborhoods in Everett, this area covers spans most of the downtown. Both the Naval Station Everett and the Port of Everett are located at Bayside.
  • Riverside: An interesting area if you are looking to make a rental property investment in Everett. This particular neighborhood has mostly residential areas located close to downtown and features a historic district as well.

For these reasons, owning a rental property in Everett can be a great investment.

Lake Stevens

snohomish housing market

When you look at a map, it’s not hard to see why Lake Stevens attracts quite a lot of new residents. First of all, it has a great location with an 8-mile commute to Everett and a 35-mile drive to Seattle.

If someone is looking to enjoy the proximity to large cities while retaining a chance to enjoy the great outdoors, Lake Stevens is a perfect choice. There are many trails and parks in and around this city.

Similar to other Snohomish County areas, Lake Stevens has seen home appreciation rates growing over the years. As an investor, it’s a good idea to pay close attention to this city as it fits the bill in many important aspects.

Marysville

Designated as part of the Seattle Metro Area, Marysville is a superb location close to Everett and Seattle. The population of this city saw a five-fold growth between the 1980s and 2000s. The 2020s are bound to continue solid growth as more people realize the city’s potential.

The recreational opportunities in the City of Marysville are great. Its residents can enjoy 35 public parks, nature preserves, playgrounds, and other outdoor areas within city limits.

Other Great Areas To Consider

This list is not all inclusive and the best areas can change with time. For the best information, give us a call at 425-485-1800. Some other areas worth considering are Bellevue, Edmonds, Redmond, Sammamish, and more.

In a Nutshell: Best Cities to Invest in Snohomish County Real Estate

Snohomish County real estate holds solid investment potential for anyone looking to get outstanding long-term value from their initial purchase. This list covered just some of the great areas in Snohomish County for real estate investing, including Lake Stevens, Everett, and Arlington.

Top 10 Amenities Renters in Snohomish County Love

Top 10 Amenities Renters in Snohomish County Love

As a property owner, you have many responsibilities, but one of your most important tasks is to keep your tenants happy by fulfilling all their rental property wants and needs.

To be a successful property owner, you must provide your tenants with accessible amenities. Not only will having amenities attract renters, but it’ll also ensure that these renters continue to renew their lease year after year. This means you’ll have consistent rental income!

In this article, we’ve compiled a list of the top amenities that tenants in Snohomish County appreciate! This will help your property stand out from the rest. So, let’s dive right in!

1. Flexible Pet Policies

Did you know that, according to the National Pet Owners Survey, 65% of people have a pet?
That’s why having a flexible pet policy can be very beneficial in creating a larger pool of
prospective renters.

Renters in Snohomish County appreciate property owners who allow pets in their unit because
pets act as emotional support for many people, and they alleviate stress and ease loneliness.
Although allowing pets in a unit may increase the chances of property damage, there are rules
you can put in place to mitigate those risks, such as placing limits on the types of breeds and
sizes allowed.

There are even pet screening companies who will verify the pet is up-to-date on all
shots, and does not have vicious tendencies.

pets in property

2. Outdoor Spaces

Although renters appreciate indoor amenities, like having access to a pool or a fitness room, many renters also enjoy having access to outdoor spaces. For examples, renters like:

  • a fenced-in yard
  • a patio
  • a deck
  • a balcony

Not only does having an outdoor space allow renters to get some fresh air, but it’s also great for families with children!

3. Walkability

Most tenants would agree that having a property in a location with a high Walk Score is a great location!

If you’re property is located near schools, parks, restaurants and shops, then it’s likely going to be appreciated by most renters in Snohomish County.

If your property’s Walk Score is between 50 and 100, it means that there are some amenities within walking distance. However, if your property scores between 0 and 50, your renters will likely need to own a vehicle or rely on public transportation.

4. Parking

Renters who own a car will absolutely appreciate having a place to park their vehicle. So, if you own a single-family home with a garage or driveway, you should definitely highlight that feature in your rental listing!

rental home driveway and garage

5. Extra Storage Space

Does your rental have walk-in closets or an extra storage room? If so, this will be very appealing to prospective renters! This is especially true if your target market is families.

If your property doesn’t have much storage, you can create some extra space by adding shelves and closets to various rooms, such as the kitchen, bathroom and bedrooms.

6. Washer/Dryer

As a landlord, you aren’t required to offer a washer and dryer. That said, having them in your unit makes your property that much more desirable.

Sometimes, renter may have their own washer and dryer. In that case, as long as you have a laundry room with a place to connect the washer and dryer that would be perfect!

7. Security

All tenants will prioritize safety. If you focus on ensuring your Snohomish County property is safe and secure, your tenants will definitely notice your efforts and appreciate it.

Here are some things you can do to your units to make them more secure:

  • Sensors: These will help deter criminals. It’s best to place these sensors in dimly-lit outdoor areas.
  • Security camera: By using a security camera, you will be able to see who is near or around the property and record their appearance.
  • Solid locks: Deadbolt locks and heavy-duty locks are effective ways to discourage burglars from entering the property.

8. A Well-Maintained Unit

As the rental owner, you must ensure that maintenance and repairs are taken care of. So, when you’re showing a unit to a prospective tenant, ensure that it looks habitable and clean.

habitable rental home

9. Offer a “Smart” Home

Having smart features in your rental home will be a bonus for many renters, especially millennial renters and those who enjoy technology.

Here are some example of how you can make your home a “smart” one:

  • Offer temperature controls – this means that before the tenant comes home, the house can be heated up for them
  • Offer a spot to plug in an electric car – if the renter has an electric car, this would be important
  • Install lights that are automatic – these lights will open when you enter the room

10. Air Conditioning / Heating

Snohomish County tenants will enjoy central air conditioning for the hot summer days, and may need a centralized heater for the potentially cold winter days.

Here are some benefits of providing a centralized air and heating:

  • The heat or cold air will circulate around the entire house more quickly
  • The system’s operations are quiet since they have built-in vents

Although offering this amenity can be initially costly, it will benefit you in the long-run because tenants will be very pleased with it.

amenities in rental units

Bottom Line

When you deliver amenities that your Snohomish County tenants love, filling vacancies will be quicker. Not to mention, once you attract those tenants, they’ll be likely to stay long-term.

If you have further questions or concerns, or would like to work with a property manager, contact T-Square Properties today.

What is “implied covenant of quiet enjoyment”?

What is “implied covenant of quiet enjoyment”?

In the U.S., tenants have a right to the quiet enjoyment of their rented property. The “Implied Covenant of Quiet Enjoyment” is the promise decreeing that a landlord will maintain a tranquil environment to allow the tenant to enjoy the premises in peace.

It’s a foundational concept that is contained in every tenancy agreement. As a landlord, violating this right may constitute a breach of the lease agreement. As a result, your tenant may have different legal options to consider. For example, the tenant may:

  • Withhold further rent payments until you have fixed the violation. 
  • Sue you in a court of law. Usually, this may end up in a small claims court. 
  • Move out without further obligations to the lease agreement. 

Clearly, none of these scenarios are good for business. Therefore, as a landlord, it’s important to familiarize yourself with the “Implied Covenant of Quiet Enjoyment.” Once you do, you can avoid common problems. 

The following are answers to common questions regarding this crucial covenant:

What basic rights do tenants have when renting?

A lease or a rental agreement gives a tenant certain rights. They are as follows:

That said, you also have a responsibility to let your tenant know of the same through a written notice. Most states have statutes that define how much time a landlord should give their tenants before entering their homes.

tenants have a right to be given notice before landlord enters the home

  • A right to live in a safe and secure home – As a landlord, you must make sure that your property is free from any health or safety hazards. Additionally, you must ensure it meets all habitability standards. 
  • A right to use the property in the way they wish – Tenants also have a right to use their rented premises in any way they want, so long as they don’t violate the lease agreement. An example of a violation would be to use the property to manufacture illegal drugs. 
  • A right to live in peace and quiet – Of course, within reason, tenants are entitled to a property they can freely occupy without recurring disturbances.

An example of a common disturbance is loud music from adjacent neighbors. Repeated landlord entry, especially without notice, can also infringe on their right to live in peace and quiet.

What does an “Implied Covenant” mean? 

An implied covenant, in the legal world, is an agreement between two parties that infers or implies to enforce something. In other words, the phrasing doesn’t necessarily have to be contained in the lease agreement. 

Also, as a landlord, you cannot force your tenant to waive this fundamental right. It’s a basic right that they are entitled to by being a tenant.

The “Implied Covenant of Quiet Enjoyment” is one of two covenants tenants have a right to. The other one is what is referred to as the “Warranty of Habitability.” The two covenants serve the purpose of ensuring that tenants’ basic rights are protected. 

What does “Quiet Enjoyment” mean? 

In regard to a rental agreement, “Quiet enjoyment” protects tenants’ rights to live in peace and quiet. Defining the term “quiet” is, however, not easy. That’s because it’s a relative term and may mean different things to different people. 

defining quiet enjoyment

As a rule, recurring disturbances and disruptions constitute a breach of a tenant’s “quiet enjoyment” of their property. 

What are some common violations of the “Covenant of Quiet Enjoyment”?

The following are some common violations of the covenant:

  • Entering the unit too often and/or without serving proper notice to the tenant.
  • Invading the tenant’s personal space. For instance, by snooping around their personal property. 
  • Ignoring the tenant’s maintenance request to resolve ongoing disruptions, such as noise complaints. 
  • Harassing the tenant either by phone or in person. 
  • Failing to provide the tenant with basic services that were promised in the lease agreement. 
  • Engaging in actions that are meant to “constructively evict” a tenant from the home. For instance, locking the tenant out of their unit or shutting off the water, electricity or A/C. 
  • Failing to respond to the tenant’s calls for repairs within a reasonable time frame. 
  • Prohibiting your tenant from enjoying social functions, like having dinner parties or entertaining guests. 

As previously mentioned, violating the covenant of quiet enjoyment is a serious lease violation. A tenant can move out, withhold paying rent or even sue you in a small claims court. 

What are some common disruptions that don’t violate a tenant’s quiet enjoyment of property? 

These don’t necessarily violate the covenant, especially if not done repeatedly:

  • Maintenance requests and small cosmetic issues that the landlord handles promptly. 
  • A smoke alarm that goes off and is turned off quickly, or if a simple fire drill is being conducted.
  • Common sounds of wildlife, like birds, crickets, and small animals scurrying in the grass. 

animals can be disruptions that aren't violations

  • A dog that barks but which the owner keeps under control. 
  • Noises from neighbors moving upstairs or downstairs. 
  • An average dinner party with music and conversation at a moderate noise level. 
  • Knocks from a landlord who is demanding due rent.

How can a landlord mitigate against infringing on their tenant’s right to quiet enjoyment? 

As a landlord, you have a responsibility to ensure that issues at the rental property are dealt with as quickly and effectively as possible. 

In case of legitimate concern, consider:

  • Talking to the tenant who is causing the disruption. This is usually common in multi-unit complexes. Let the tenant know that there can be legal consequences should they not halt their actions. 
  • Compensating the tenant. If damages result from the nuisance, then consider compensating the tenant appropriately. Damage may result, for instance, when a tenant trips and breaks their arm during a renovation in the hallway. 
  • Evicting the tenant who is causing the disruption. If the tenant doesn’t change and continues disrupting other tenants, then consider evicting them. 

Respecting a tenant’s peace and quiet enjoyment is key to running a successful rental investment. If you are just getting started and don’t have a grasp on tenancy laws yet, T-Square Properties can help. We have been helping property owners in the Seattle area since 1996!

How to Keep Renters Happy

How to Keep Renters Happy

In the rental business industry, finding high-quality tenants is one of the top objectives. For this reason, you want to keep them loyal to your property. 

Good tenants are prompt in paying rental dues. They strive to contribute to the harmony in the property and neighborhood. Damages are also minimal since they conduct their tenant duties well. For this reason, you want to keep these types of tenants happy to prevent them from leaving.

Check out some of these tips on how to inspire happiness in your tenants: 

1. Always prioritize repairs and maintenance.

Who wants to live in a rental unit with a clogged toilet? Who wants to spend a rainy day indoors under a leaking roof. No one. Therefore, when there are problems that you need to address, focus on resolving them.

Renters are happy when living in a safe and habitable space. They don’t want to spend precious time reporting various property concerns. They’d prefer not to deal with stressful inconveniences, whether minor or significant. Without them, tenants can spend time in their homes while in a relaxed mood.

2. Be reachable when a tenant contacts you.

An absentee landlord makes life incredibly stressful for tenants when they need to get in contact with you as soon as possible. One of the many responsibilities of your position is to be accessible to your renters. So, declare certain business days during which you’ll be available to answer their calls.

Make sure to be easily available to your tenants

Tenants will be glad to have landlords that they can easily contact. Waiting for a response will make tenants anxious. When the concern is urgent, tenants want to feel relieved that the landlord is aware of the problems. Action is expected in some cases, and this requires landlords to be present and within reach.

3. Follow the State law regarding tenant’s privacy.

There are many violations a landlord may commit while doing their job. Hovering over tenants or constantly monitoring their every move goes against tenant’s privacy laws, and their peace and quiet. Additionally, so are unannounced property inspections. Make sure to schedule your visits ahead of time and provide reasonable notice of at least 24 hours.

Renters will appreciate that you value their privacy. They do understand that inspections should be performed to keep up with property maintenance. However, they’ll feel much more respected when enough notice has been provided. This way, they can rearrange their schedule to be present at the time of the inspection.

4. Prioritize the tenant’s safety.

If a property lacks security measures, tenants will undoubtedly feel unsafe in their homes. To protect your renters, invest in security camera equipment. Moreover, purchase solid door and window locks. Your property should discourage burglars from breaking and entering.

Tenants will feel relieved and happy to live in a well-secured area. When CCTVs are present, they can breathe easy knowing that there’s a way to track and identify anyone with ill intentions. Even if the rent is cheap, it’s scary to be a victim of a petty crime. Further, having a good security system means tenants can go home late without fear.

5. Treat your tenants respectfully and professionally.

A landlord who is difficult to deal with will put any tenant at unease. When interacting with your tenants, practice tact and treat everyone fairly. Be flexible and approachable without being overbearing. Lastly, dress acceptably and be considerate.

Show up for your tenants in a respectable manner

Renters are happier when they get along well with their landlord. They’re not looking for you to be overly friendly and go out drinking with them. Instead, they want someone reasonable, firm and respectful. Retain boundaries without being overly strict and protect each tenant’s privacy.

6. Make your rental unit pet-friendly.

Does the rental have too many restrictions, such as disallowing pets? Does the property have the perfect location and amenities, but no pets are permitted? Being unwelcoming of any pets can make your prospects narrower. 

Pets naturally make tenants happier. So, by being a pet-friendly rental space, you automatically add joy to your customers. Opening your property to pets might be challenging. 

However, with the right measures, you can protect the value of your home. You can add pet addendums to detail your requirements and restrictions according to the type, size and breed of the pets. Most tenants who own pets also stay longer, being a significant incentive.

7. Appreciate your tenants.

Are your tenants responsible and dependable? Do they avoid violations and consistently adhere to your property policies? If yes, consider giving recognition and appreciation.

Make your renters happy by letting them know you value their presence and loyalty. You can give out gift cards, meal coupons and even holiday cards. This effort goes a long way in cultivating a good landlord-tenant relationship. Some landlords will even offer rental discounts after a tenant renews.

8. Listen to your tenants when they have complaints and concerns. 

Do your tenants trust your judgment during conflicts and report their concerns to you? As a landlord, you must communicate well with your renters. Practice active listening and avoid dismissing complaints you consider as minor. What’s minor for you may be a big deal to the tenant reporting the concern.

Communicate and listen effectively when your tenants raise a concern

Ask for further information so that you can better respond to your renters’ needs and resolve issues promptly. Tenants are likely to be happier when they know that you pay attention to their requests. If something is within your capacity to grant and it’s reasonable, then being flexible is a good idea.

Bottom Line

Keeping renters happy requires you to pay attention to the details. Take care of the property, be responsive to your tenants and show respect at all times. Generate a long-term vision of cultivating loyalty from your tenants. Serve their needs well, and you’ll end up a happy landlord in the process.

If you need an experienced and dedicated property manager, contact T-Square Real Estate Services at (425) 485- 1800 or visit our website.

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