Once you’ve signed a lease, that doesn’t mean you have free rein over your rental or a right to behave in whatever way you want. That lease is a business agreement, and you have a responsibility to uphold it, the same your landlord does. Take note of these top tips for being a good tenant because the repercussions for you can be serious—and a little respect will make everyone’s lives easier.
Why bother being a dream tenant? Because it can affect your future. If you’re not cooperative, it could cost you financially and in other ways:
- Paying your rent late can affect your credit and make it harder to find another landlord who will take a chance on you.
- Evictions are public record, and you have no option to expunge it.
- If there’s a legal judgment against you, your landlord could pursue you for payment or garnish your wages for six years or more.
Okay, now that you’re good and scared, you should know that there are positives to being a good tenant, too. R. Russell Properties has been in rental home management in Orlando for decades, and we can tell you that it’s in your best interest. When landlords are happy, they’re more likely to work with you on rent breaks and discounts or perks like property upgrades and more amenities. Most importantly, it’s a great way to build up your credit. Try these pointers:
Read Your Lease
If you skim before you sign, you’re missing out on details like policies on subletting and pets. Your lease should also spell out the consequences for contract infractions—and you might be subject to eviction for any of them.
Pay on Time
Whatever the reason, it’s never okay to be late with the rent. Your landlord might be reporting your payments to credit bureaus, and late payments can deteriorate relations fast. Keep a financial cushion, and sign up for automatic payment if possible.
Be Good To the Property
When it’s not yours, it’s easy to be cavalier about your home. But there’s a difference between “normal” wear and tear and letting your nephew drip slime down the vents. You could default your security deposit or be liable for repairs. Take measures like applying pads to furniture feet to minimize damage. In general, keep the place clean, and treat it like it’s your own.
Be Low Maintenance
If your property needs a repair, report it promptly and without panic. Your landlord should give you a reasonable timetable for the repair. But don’t be a pest about smaller issues, especially if you created the problem. If your cat shreds the blinds, you should fix them. Newsflash: You can buy and replace a lightbulb on your own.
At R. Russell Properties, we only partner with property owners with the best reputations, so if you’re in central Florida and can take these top tips for being a good tenant seriously, we’d be happy to help you find a great rental situation. Contact us for more information.