How To Be A Good Tenant

4211891004_14e9663945Guest post by Mallory Pickard

Getting your security deposit back and obtaining a good reference from your landlord when you move out is easy if you know and follow a few simple guidelines. With the number of tenant disputes on the rise, there’s no better time to take in these quick tips on being a good tenant in order to avoid undue stress, conflicts with your landlord, and even legal trouble.

1. READ YOUR LEASE BEFORE YOU SIGN AND AGREE TO IT.

Be aware of what is allowed and not allowed. If the lease says no pets and you’re dying to get a puppy, don’t sign your lease and try to sneak in an animal later on. Go over the rules about noise, garbage, guests, and on-property car repairs. Breaking your lease even on one occasion is a permanent mark on your reputation as a good tenant.

2. BE CONSIDERATE OF YOUR NEIGHBORS.

Respect the fact that they may have different work hours and sleep schedules than you. They may get migraines, have a baby sleeping, or may just not have the same taste in music, so save the blaring tunes for your headphones or your local nightclub. If you sit outside late at night on the phone or with your friends, keep it down. Noise complaints are one of the most common and most frustrating complaints for a landlord. Even if you aren’t that disruptive, complaints are considered a hassle by your landlord.

3. IF PETS ARE ALLOWED, CLEAN UP AFTER THEM.

If you have a cat, clean the litter box regularly and dispose of the trash as soon as possible. If you have a dog, clean up after it when you take it on a walk around the property. Always keep your dog on a leash outdoors. Not everyone loves dogs or knows how great your dog may be, and you risk making a neighbor feel uncomfortable or being reported to the landlord if you let your dog run around without restraint.

4. KNOW THAT YOU ARE RESPONSIBLE FOR YOUR GUESTS.

If you have friends who are disrespectful or who tend to get out of hand at parties, keep this in mind. You and you alone are responsible for any damage to your apartment and the common areas caused by your guests. If you decide to have a lot of people over, know that any resulting damages or complaints are ultimately your responsibility. Be smart.

5. KEEP YOUR APARTMENT PRESENTABLE.

A clean apartment shows that you have pride in the place you live, and landlords will be less likely to worry about or anticipate damage to the property while you reside there. Keep food properly stored to avoid attracting insects and rodents, and don’t let your trash sit for more than a few days. As a courtesy, don’t leave your trash bags outside for your neighbors to see.

6. BE CONSIDERATE ABOUT PARKING.

Parking outside your assigned spot is another frequent complaint that you don’t want associated with your tenant history. Use common sense. If there is guest parking, don’t let your guests make excuses about parking in other people’s spots. Imagine how you would feel if you came home and found that your spot was occupied by some random car. If there is no assigned parking, park properly between the lines and never leave trash from your car on the curb or in the parking lot.

7. AVOID BEING HIGH MAINTENANCE.

If it’s an easy fix, don’t immediately resort to calling maintenance or your landlord. Keeping buildings safe and running smoothly for tenants is a full-time job, and regularly calling to have something like a light bulb replaced or your sink unclogged, when you can just as easily do it yourself, may seem a little demanding. On that note, never try to fix a leak, a furnace, a faulty dryer hookup, or anything that has the potential to get complicated. You risk exacerbating the problem for maintenance and getting yourself into trouble.

8. PRIOR NOTICE.

Give the proper notice as stated on your lease agreement to your landlord when you decide to move on. Keep in mind your landlord will serve as your reference to the next. A tenant who communicates with his or her landlord will find it easy to get back their security deposit and transition smoothly with good references for future living situations.

9. PAY ON TIME (THE GOLDEN RULE FOR TENANTS).

Do everything you can to pay your rent on time. That being said, some landlords understand that things happen sometimes. If you’re going to be late on your rent, give the property manager as much advanced notice as possible. Be honest about the situation and try to give them a reasonable time line for when you will have your rent. Avoiding your landlord or lying to them will cause you to quickly lose credibility in their eyes. Making them chase you down is never a good idea, and doing so will only make the situation worse for you in the long run. Be an adult and confront the issue head on.

Author Bio: This article was written by Mallory Pickard.

photo credit: Son of Groucho

How To Be A Good Tenant

Getting your security deposit back and obtaining a good reference from your landlord when you move out is easy if you know and follow a few simple guidelines. With the number of tenant disputes on the rise, there’s no better time to take in these quick tips on being a good tenant in order to avoid undue stress, conflicts with your landlord, and even legal trouble.

  1. Read your lease before you sign and agree to it. Be aware of what is allowed and not allowed. If the lease says no pets and you’re dying to get a puppy, don’t sign your lease and try to sneak in an animal later on. Go over the rules about noise, garbage, guests, and on-property car repairs. Breaking your lease even on one occasion is a permanent mark on your reputation as a good tenant.
  2. Be considerate of your neighbors. Respect the fact that they may have different work hours and sleep schedules than you. They may get migraines, have a baby sleeping, or may just not have the same taste in music, so save the blaring tunes for your headphones or your local nightclub. If you sit outside late at night on the phone or with your friends, keep it down. Noise complaints are one of the most common and most frustrating complaints for a landlord. Even if you aren’t that disruptive, complaintsare considereda hasslebyyour landlord.
  3. If pets are allowed, clean up after them. If you have a cat, clean the litter box regularly and dispose of the trash as soon as possible. If you have a dog, clean up after it when you take it on a walk around the property. Always keep your dog on a leash outdoors. Not everyone loves dogs or knows how great your dog may be, and you risk making a neighbor feel uncomfortable or being reported to the landlord if you let your dog run around without restraint.
  4. Know that you are responsible for your guests. If you have friends who are disrespectful or who tend to get out of hand at parties, keep this in mind.You and you alone are responsible for any damage to your apartment and the common areascaused byyour guests. If you decide to have a lot of people over, know that any resulting damages or complaints are ultimately your responsibility. Be smart.
  5. Keep your apartment presentable. A clean apartment shows that you have pride in the place you live, and landlords will be less likely to worry about or anticipate damage to the property while you reside there. Keep food properly stored to avoid attracting insects and rodents, and don’t let your trash sit for more than a few days. As a courtesy, don’t leave your trash bags outside for your neighbors to see.
  6. Be considerate about parking. Parking outside your assigned spot is another frequent complaint that you don’t want associated with your tenant history. Use common sense. If there is guest parking, don’t let your guests make excuses about parking in other people’s spots. Imagine how you would feel if you came home and found that your spot was occupied by some random car. If there is no assigned parking, park properly between the lines and never leave trash from your car on the curb or in the parking lot.
  7. Avoid being high maintenance. If it’s an easy fix, don’t immediately resort to calling maintenance or your landlord. Keeping buildings safe and running smoothly for tenants is a full-time job, and regularly calling to have something like a light bulb replaced or your sink unclogged,when you can just as easily do it yourself, may seem a little demanding. On that note, never try to fix a leak, a furnace, a faulty dryer hookup, or anything that has the potential to get complicated. You risk exacerbating the problem for maintenance and getting yourself into trouble.
  8. Prior notice. Give the proper notice as stated on your lease agreement to your landlord when you decide to move on . Keep in mind your landlord will serve as your reference to the next. A tenant who communicates with his or her landlord will find it easy to get back their security deposit and transition smoothly with good references for future living situations.
  9. Pay On Time – The Golden Rule for Tenants. Do everything you can to pay your rent on time. That being said, some landlords understand that things happen sometimes. If you’re going to be late on your rent, give the property manager as much advanced notice as possible. Be honest about the situation and try to give them a reasonable time line for when you will have your rent. Avoiding your landlord or lying to them will cause you to quickly lose credibility in their eyes. Making them chase you down is never a good idea, and doing so will only make the situation worse for you in the long run. Be an adult and confront the issue head on.

Bio: Maria Rainier is a freelance writer and blog junkie. She is currently a resident blogger at First in Education, researching various online degree programs and blogging about student life. In her spare time, she enjoys square-foot gardening, swimming, and avoiding her laptop.



Comments

Leave a Reply

avatar
  Subscribe  
Notify of