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Landlord advice: what makes a good tenant?

By Courtenay Morrison

Owning a property is an emotional decision, so it can be a hard task finding a good tenant to trust with your asset. Whether you’re looking for responsible tenants to rent your old family house, or seeking occupants for a new investment property, you need to know what attributes make a great tenant. When you know which attributes make a great tenant and how to filter through tenant applications, you’ll be far better placed to make the right decision for your investment property. Say hello to smooth sailing as a new, happy landlord.

What makes a great tenant?

Before you develop a process for tenant screening, you need to know what you’re looking for first. These attributes should be top on your list of priorities for finding your dream tenant.

Strong financial stability

It goes without saying that you’ll require tenants who can pay their rent on time. When you work with a property manager, they’ll know what due diligence need to be performed to ensure your prospective tenant can pay the rent. As a rule of thumb, an employed person should have been at their current position for 3 months or more. A self-employed person should have 3 tax returns completed to demonstrate financial stability. There are exceptions to this rule, but you’ll need prospective tenants to provide further proof of income if this is the case.

Pride in appearance

Decorating and furnishing the home is almost an Australian past time, but not all tenants will behave respectfully. A high-quality tenant will want to treat your home like their castle, and as a place for them to take pride in when they have family and friends over. Of course, it can be hard to assess this from a rental application. That’s why it makes sense to pay attention to a prospective tenant’s character when they attend a rental viewing. Their personal appearance will give you a lot of indicators as to how they’ll treat your property. Do they appear reliable, presentable and approachable? If your prospective tenant takes pride in how they present themselves, chances are they’ll extend that same care to your property too.

Rental history and positive references

A strong rental history includes a few factors. Did they pay rent on time? How many properties have they rented before, and how long have they been in each property? Did they have loud parties? How was their communication? You or your property manager will want to speak to their landlords, previous real estate agents and personal references to get a well-rounded perspective of their character.

There are many attributes that will make up the perfect tenant for you, and we haven’t listed them all here. But with a wish list of must-haves, a good judge of character, and the right tenant screening process, you’ll be far better placed to make the best decision for your property and your future.

Ray White Hornsby are specialists in property management on the Hornsby District. Our focus on quality service means your property will get the one-on-one attention it deserves from our expert property managers.

Contact us today for more information.

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