Setting Expectations for Positive Tenant Experience

31 Dec Setting Expectations for Positive Tenant Experience


One of the most important elements of any good relationship is expectations. This also applies to relationships between landlords and tenants. A landlord needs to have very clear and concise expectations of the tenant and vice versa. All parties to the lease should know about their respective rights and obligations as specified in that document and any others that are made a condition of the tenancy. By setting the expectation early on in the tenant application process, it’s more likely that nobody’s time is wasted with costly background checks on otherwise unqualified prospects.

The following things should be spelled out in the application:

  • Who are the occupants? All adult occupants should be listed regardless of who is signing as financially responsible.
  • Current employers and verifiable earnings records for all persons who will be financially responsible – What is your formula for calculating affordability based on income?
  • Current and past (4 years if possible) addresses and landlord data for all adult occupants.
  • If there are minors who will be occupying the landlord should have the name and age of each minor.
  • How many vehicles will the occupants need to park on the premises?
  • Pets- how many and of what variety?

Also to be considered are your requirements for the tenants:

  • Do you have a maximum occupancy based on the size of the premises?
  • What is the amount of security deposit required? If too little, the landlord is unnecessarily exposed financially. If too much you could price out a sizable number of qualified tenants. Balance is needed.
  • Do you have a pet policy? Are there any pets you would not allow under any circumstances
  • What type of pet deposit is required?
  • Do you require that tenants provide proof of liability insurance for the premises?

Finally, consider what should be clearly spelled out in the lease:

  • Names of all adult and financially responsible tenants
  • Number of and location of all parking spaces assigned to the property
  • Utilities included specifically
  • Utilities to be paid for by the tenant
  • Services (i.e. pool and gardening) to be included as well as those to be the responsibility of the tenant
  • Is the property in a Homeowner’s Association? If so, a copy of the HOA rules needs to be attached to the lease with the tenants acknowledgement of having read and understanding them.

This might seem like a lot of information, but this process requires careful consideration and thorough planning. If you are feeling overwhelmed by the prospect of handling this on your own, we can offer assistance. Metro Property Services has clear tenant expectations for all prospective tenants. By being clear we help avoid many problems down the road.

If you’d like to learn more about the professional property management and leasing services we provide, contact us for details at 310-220-4495 or visit us online. We look forward to hearing from you!