As a property manager, you recognize how important it is to keep tabs on every building or multifamily property under your supervision. But the process starts long before anyone moves into your property. From the initial rental to the day a tenant moves out, take note of how to handle the entire process with this property management checklist.

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Property Management Checklist

As the backbone of the rental industry, tenants want an excellent property at a good price and with a reasonable landlord. Consequently, the majority of your job as a property manager will center around attracting new tenants and keeping current renters satisfied. The process of the tenant-renter relationship will generally progress as follows:

  1. Attracting new tenants
  2. Tenant screening
  3. Retention
  4. Tenant departure

1) Attracting New Tenants

Where and how do you advertise a vacant property? Hanging a “For Rent” sign in the window of an empty storefront or putting signs outside an apartment complex certainly catches a passerby’s attention, but won’t necessarily leave an impression. The vast majority of tenants begin their search online. Advertise your properties on the internet with high-quality photos of the interior and exterior of your space. A potential renter who finds your post interesting will reach out to you.

2) Tenant Screening

It’s a bad practice to rent a property to just anyone who asks. Basic screening with the use of rental applications and background checks will ensure the protection of your property. Can the interested party pay rent? Do they have a good history with previous landlords and employers? Most importantly, have they ever been evicted from previous rentals? Answering these questions will help you determine if renting to potential tenants is worthwhile.

Pro Tip: If you choose to check a potential renter’s credit history, don’t neglect to review the laws in your city and state There are often strict credit reporting guidelines that should be observed.

3) Retention

Once you’ve approved a tenant and they’ve moved in, it’s time to keep them happy in their new location and encourage them to stay. Keep the property maintained and appealing. More importantly, be sure to allow open communication between your management staff and the renters. If there is an issue, there should be clear expectations for the tenant and how you’ve agreed to respond. That being said, keep detailed records of every payment and agreement between you and your tenant. While you may never need it, it’s always better to have a paper trail of your communication.

4) Tenant Departure

Undoubtedly, no tenant will stay with your property forever. Store locations close or residents move. When a tenant approaches you about leaving, work with them to complete any and all necessary move-out paperwork or other lease agreements. Be sure to document the state of the property in its’ current state. Has any damage occurred beyond reasonable wear and tear? If so, your tenant should be aware if they should be held financially responsible. The sooner you know what work or cleaning needs to be done, the quicker you can finish everything and rent the space out to a new tenant.

Additionally, don’t forget to refund the tenant’s security deposit! Even deductions occurred for repairs or property maintenance, your tenant is entitled to the amount that was agreed upon. Obtain the tenant’s contact information to process their refund without any delays.

Maintaining a Good Relationship with Your Tenants

Ultimately, the burden of satisfying your tenants and encouraging them to stay rests on you as the property manager. If you demonstrate excellent communication skills and manage your properties effectively, many tenants will be happy with the services you provide and will gladly renew their leases. Keep this property management checklist close to ensure you’ve done everything you can to keep your tenants satisfied.

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