Earlier this summer, the Albany State legislature passed a bill that would transform the lives of New York City tenants as they know it. On 14th June, the Housing Stability and Tenant Protection Act of 2019, commonly referred to as universal rent control, made the lives of more than two and a half million tenants in NYC significantly better.
With this law in place to protect the rights of tenants, being an awesome landlord, is no longer a matter of choice, it’s also called avoiding a lawsuit!
Managing rental property can be a hassle, especially if you want to be a landlord who can retain enough valuable tenants. However, maintaining a healthy relationship with your tenants will only work in your favor. How, you ask?
How being a good landlord pays off in the long run
- A good landlord attracts reliable tenants who don’t end up costing you an arm and a leg in repairs. It also means being able to find tenants who will pay rent on time and not be up playing hardcore metal at devil’s hour.
- Sometimes, you have to suppress the urge to be Rich Uncle Pennybags, (also known as Mr. Monopoly), and remind yourself that your tenants are not piggy banks but people. And you have to build relationships with people and extend common courtesy to get the most out of them.
- Anyone who’s ever tried to make it in the city knows being a tenant in NYCis not easy. A woeful tenant is always looking for an amazing landlord and will value the relationship as well. However, being a landlord means summoning patience to deal with complaints from tenants as well as being vigilant with repairs.
How can you do all this and more to be the best landlord? Here are a few tips to start you off.
Make a personalized rental agreement
Whether it’s a lease or a rental agreement, make sure you spell everything out from the get-go. Specify any and all kinds of restrictions that you want tenants to be mindful of so they know what kind of lifestyle they can lead on your property.
The clearer your terms of relationship, the more transparency you will have in dealing with your tenant. Communicating everything in detail and with crystal clarity can be difficult, so don’t hesitate in reaching out to a professional property manager to help you iron out the paperwork.
Read up on the law
The Housing Stability and Tenant Protection Act is the right place to start. A summary of the act can be found here.
- Significant changes in the ability to raise rents and improvements that need to be made to properties are a part of the law.
- Along with the need to only hire licensed contractors.
- Tenants are also allowed a minimum of 2 months’ review period.
- Security deposits are also limited to a month’s rent and not more.
- Avail an expert’s guidance before you draw up any lease or rental agreement.
Don’t plan any surprise visits
Be careful to give your tenant ample notice period before you show up for any reason, even if it’s for repairs. As vigilant as you should be with maintenance visits, make sure they are prepared for your visit or you could end up violating their privacy and their personal space.
When drawing up the lease or rental agreement, make sure you do include the right to access the property, so you don’t end up violating any privacy laws even if your intention is friendly. It helps to identify what time works best for the both of you to communicate and how you want to communication for e.g. via email, text, in person etc.
To assist all kinds of negotiations between tenants and landlords, our experts at KH Consultants can help! We also offer expertise and help in other aspects of property management. You can visit our website for a comprehensive understanding of our services.