A majority of us have in our lifetimes rented a property, be it a room, an apartment, a whole house, you name it. We have all heard stories or even experienced it for ourselves how a bad landlord can make your life a nightmare.
Usually, bad landlords fall into two categories. The first, is the type who does not leave you alone- banging at your door for the rental fee, spamming your WhatsApp with messages, constantly checking on the property… Those who have a general disregard of your privacy and distrusts you.
The second are the ones who you will never ever hear from. These are the landlords who do not have a care about what happens to their property and when something goes wrong, you are left stranded, be it a leaking ceiling, power cut-offs, water bars, the list goes on.
Having a good landlord is the basis of peaceful living during your stay at the property. Truthfully, landlords are the ones who make the rental-world go round, so what makes a good landlord? A good landlord should be one who is apt at balancing an adequate amount of communication while giving you the space you need. They do not pester you every 5 minutes, but are reachable when needed to solve any unforeseen problems which arise in the property.
Qualities which make a good landlord
1. Healthy communication
Good landlords do not shy away from communicating as they know communication is important in avoiding any misunderstandings and mishaps. They are generally reachable by phone or text, or even through their agents and are ready to answer any questions or quick to address and solve any problems you may have with the property.
2. Honesty and transparency
A good landlord will be clear and honest about the property and any issues with it. This is especially important in issues which you should know before renting a property, like plumbing, neighbours, pests, etc.. An honest and transparent landlord is one who will let you know of issues up front and are willing to work with you should those problems surface during your stay.
3. Legal documentation
A good landlord will also ensure that the rights of both sides are protected. The signing of legal documents, such as a lease, are tremendously important to ensure that both parties are on the same page and share an agreement.
4. Timely maintenance
A good landlord will ensure a liveable and more importantly, functioning property. Liveable in the sense that the property is tidy and presented in the best way possible when you receive the keys. Functioning is that the amenities within the property are in working condition and the landlord is ready to provide a solution or maintenance services when anything malfunctions.
5. Fair and reasonable
A good landlord should be able to distinguish between the unavoidable wear and tear of the property and intentional damage. For example, if a pipe is leaking, the landlord will understand that this is the usual wear and tear which needs to be fixed instead of find ways to blame the tenants for it.
6. Flexible when required
A good landlord is also one who shows compassion and is understanding when tenants are in tough times. There will be certain times when tenants may not be able to pay their rent on the dot. They are human too, retrenchment, hospitalisation, tragedy, these may all happen and a little flexibility from landlords, such as working out a way to sort the rent issue during these times will go a long way.
7. Keeps a fair distance
A landlord who does not look over your shoulder 24 hours a day or drop in unannounced are good landlords who are respectful of your privacy and keeps an appropriate distance. Allowing their agents or mediators the freedom to do their job is also a sign of a good landlord.
8. Trusts tenants to be responsible
A good landlord gives tenants the benefit of the doubt and chooses to trust them first until proven otherwise. A good landlord trusts that you will pay your rent on time, care for the property, and in return, can also gain the confidence of tenants to work together through any major issues with the property.