- Rent prices have significantly increased in most countries due to the pandemic.
- Many cities have enforced rent control measures to help struggling tenants.
- Landlords should focus on tenant retention by offering online payment and digital paperwork options.
- Ensuring safety and sanitation has become a top priority for landlords due to the pandemic.
- Landlords should adapt by offering more flexible rental options and utilizing technology effectively.
As the world slowly recovers from the pandemic that has shaken us for the past year, it is important to look ahead and consider how we can adapt our businesses to the new normal. One of the most impacted industries has been property management and rental. As a landlord, you know that the pandemic has affected your business in many ways. So what do you need to know about being a landlord after the pandemic?
Residential Rental Market After the Pandemic
It’s first essential to know the current state of the residential rental market. According to recent studies, rent prices have increased significantly in most parts of the country due to the pandemic. Although this is good for some landlords, it has led some to be hung and dry regarding tenants. Now prices have normalized again, which means higher competition for everyone involved. Here are some of the latest trends in the industry and offer some strategies for adapting to the new normal so that your properties won’t struggle in the long run.
As many cities faced economic challenges during the pandemic, many have enforced rent control measures to help struggling tenants. This means landlords need to be aware of the rent control policies in their area and whether or not they will impact their business. Rent control can limit rent increases, so landlords must be creative in finding other ways to offset their costs. Here are ways to do that:
One way to offset costs is to introduce ancillary fees, such as pet rent, late fees, and amenity charges. While these may not seem like much in the short run, they can add up over time. That said, it’s essential to be aware of local and state laws that limit how much landlords can charge for these fees.
Focus on Tenant Retention
The pandemic has made tenants more cautious about moving in or out of a property. This means landlords must proactively retain existing tenants rather than focus on bringing in new ones. Here are ways to do that:
Renters sometimes forget to pay their rent on time, creating stress for both parties. To reduce this issue moving forward, landlords should consider offering online payment options to make it easier and more convenient for tenants to pay their rent.
Paperwork can be a hassle for the landlord and tenant, so going digital can help streamline the process. By using digital tools to fill out documents, sign leases, and submit applications, landlords can save time and money while providing their tenants with a better experience.
Effective communication is key to tenant satisfaction. Landlords should keep in touch with their current tenants so they know what’s going on in the building and can voice any issues or concerns. This can be done by sending periodic emails or creating a tenant portal for all communications.
Managing Your Rental Property
Lastly, your rental property should be in tip-top shape to attract and retain tenants. Ensure your building is properly maintained and any repairs are done quickly. If you don’t want to do this job yourself or have other properties you need to manage, consider hiring a professional rental property management service. These services can help you with rent collection, tenant screening, and daily maintenance tasks.
Safety and Sanitation
The pandemic has made health and safety a top priority for everyone. Landlords must proactively ensure their properties are safe, clean, and compliant with new health regulations. Consider implementing touchless entry systems, providing regular sanitation, and ensuring tenants follow mask protocols in common areas.
The pandemic has changed how people work and live, and as a result, the rental market has also changed. Many people are now looking for short-term rentals or flexible leases as they are unsure about their plans. So landlords need to be creative in offering more flexible rental options. This could offer shorter or partial leases, allowing tenants to rent out extra space when not using it. This is an opportunity for landlords to diversify their income streams and mitigate the risks of long-term leases.
Utilize Technology Effectively
The pandemic has spurred landlords to become more tech-savvy. One of the most impactful ways to embrace technology is through remote management tools. Here are some of those tools:
- Online Applications and Tenant Screening: Online applications make it easier for tenants to complete paperwork and provide all the necessary documents. Meanwhile, tenant screening tools help landlords gain insights into their potential renters to make an informed decision.
- Rent Tracking Systems: These systems allow landlords to track rent payments easily and see who has paid on time and who has not.
- Property Management Software: Property management software allows landlords to automate various tasks, such as rent collection and maintenance requests, without being present in person.
- Maintenance Scheduling: This helps landlords keep up with repair issues quickly and efficiently.
Overall, the rental market has changed a great deal in the past year due to the pandemic. Landlords need to be prepared for the new normal and ensure they are up-to-date on best practices to survive and thrive in this new environment. By utilizing technology, offering flexible leases, and finding creative ways to offset costs, landlords can better manage their properties and adapt to the changing times.