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10 Resolutions All Tenants Should Make

December 27, 2017

As a tenant, there’s a good chance that you can quickly list off ten things that you wish your landlord would do. But have you ever sat down and thought that maybe, just maybe, your landlord has a few things that they’d like from you as well?

The landlord and tenant relationship can be a tricky one –but despite the popular image of the landlord –or tenant, from hell, the fact is that tenants and landlords can coexist peacefully! It’s just that we’re less likely to hear about these situations –and stories of landlord-tenant drama are far more likely to stick with us for longer.

Since it’s the time of year where we make resolutions and try our hardest to keep them, why not consider a few things you can change that will benefit your landlord –and yourself as well?

Let’s look at ten resolutions that all tenants should make. Here’s to a long and happy lease.

Abide By the Terms of the Lease
Your landlord isn’t laying down the rules because they’re on a power trip –they have rules for a reason: to keep themselves, their house, and you as safe as possible. When you sign the contract –you are agreeing to follow the rules. Look over the lease carefully before signing, and don’t hesitate to ask for clarification on any issues that you’re uncertain about. Once the lease has been signed and sealed, don’t attempt to wiggle out of the contract.


Be Respectful
Try to respect your landlord, and treat them how you hope they would treat you. Be civil and mindful of them, and remember: they’re only human as well! Keep in mind that a little bit of thoughtfulness, like waiting until morning to complain about a dripping tap, can go a long way.

   Be Honest

Always be truthful and upfront with your landlord. Don’t tell them you have one tiny dog, and then attempt to smuggle in two Great Danes. They’ll find out, and that won’t be good for anyone. It’s akin to the landlord promising you that you can have your pets, only to inform you after you move in that pets are not allowed. Always keep your promises, as you expect the landlord to keep theirs.

Have Patience
Good landlords will try to be on top of things. If they’re generally quick to respond and take action –then cut them a bit of slack if they can’t always answer your phone calls. Remember to leave a message so that they can return the call.

 Don’t Be Afraid to Help Yourself
Within reason, that is. For simple things such as changing a light bulb, oiling a squeaky door or unclogging a drain –feel free to give it a shot before calling the landlord in. Of course, for bigger jobs, or anything involving electrical repairs, major plumbing, or tree removal –make sure you call the landlord first –no matter how handy you may be with a chainsaw.

Treat The Property With Respect
Treat the property with respect –after all, it’s your property too while you’re paying for it and residing there so why not do everything that you can to help make it a pleasant and enjoyable place to be. Plus if it’s in good condition when you leave, you may get your security deposit back –and a good reference from your landlord.

Communicate
Communication is key to making any relationship work. Keep your landlord informed of any issues that arise with the rental. They won’t be upset that you brought the leak under the sink to their attention –if anything, they should thank you for being diligent in looking after their rental!  

Remember Your Neighbors
No, we aren’t talking about sending them a Christmas card or bringing them some holiday goodies –although that’s certainly not a bad idea! We’re just suggesting that you remember your neighbors, and note that the noise level in your house –directly impacts them, especially if you are in an apartment setting or if your house is close to another. Often, sound is amplified and what may not sound that loud to you could be reverberating off of the neighbor’s walls!

Ask Before You Make Modifications
We know –sometimes it’s easier to apologize after the fact than it is to get permission ahead of time. But this isn’t the case when it comes to rental property. Make sure you get permission before painting a wall, removing shrubbery, tearing up the carpet, or making any other modifications.

Pay the Rent on Time
Finally, if you really want to get on your landlord’s good side: pay your rent on time. Better yet, set up automatic payments that are sent a day or two before the rent is due! Your landlord will be much appreciative and you will be happier knowing you don’t have to worry about remembering to pay the rent each month. It’s a win-win situation.

While this list is in no way exhaustive, keeping the above points in mind can help you to go far in the landlord’s books. When landlords and tenants get along it’s a beautiful thing –so try to do your part!

What about you? As a landlord, which things do you wish your tenants would do? Tenants: what resolutions do you wish your landlord would make?