A Guide to Nurturing a Healthy Landlord-Tenant Relationship

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Maintaining a good relationship with your landlord is an integral part of having a quality experience as a tenant, which will make your life much easier for any future housing needs and requests.

Landlord-tenant relationships require constant effort to maintain a balance that is favorable to both sides and the complexities will depend on how flexible each party is when coming up with an agreement. 

There are plenty at stake – your future home, tenancy concerns, security deposit recovery, and possibly a no rental rate increase for your lease renewal. It is in your long-term best interest to remain friendly with your landlord, so here are some quick tips on how to maintain and improve landlord-tenant relationships.

During Home Search



Create your own needs analysis where will you identify what your requirements and expectations are before searching for a property.

Consider an assessment of the landlord as part of your decision process. Be clear about your expectations, so if there are reasonable fixes you want before you move in, put them in writing and make them part of your offer. Agreements that were discussed should happen before you sign the lease contract. If a landlord has promised a repair, new washer and dryer, new carpet, or anything else that will be done as a condition of your lease, then be absolutely sure to get it in writing, preferably on the lease document. Anything less opens a possibility for miscommunication that could eventually lead to bigger problems. Always remember: Promises don’t get things done. Written agreements do.

Do not be shy to ask the right questions, as much as necessary, when searching for a home to rent. Treat your landlord with respect, as you would with any other human being. If there are issues with the apartment that need to be dealt with, communicate your concerns in a non-demanding way.

Read and review your lease contract carefully and completely. A careful review of your contract is important before you sign and agree to legally enforceable terms and conditions. You are making legally binding guarantees regarding payment terms, preventive maintenance, repairs, and others so it is vital to ensure you understand and are comfortable with all aspects of the agreement.


Moving into your new home



Request for a pre-move in technical inspection or/ walk-through together with the landlord to assess any existing wear and tear. This will alleviate many disputes at the time of move out.


It is very important that you get a detailed snapshot of its current condition. If this step is overlooked, you risk facing sizable expenses down the road. Tenants are often responsible for maintenance, and they may be held liable for previously existing conditions if you fail to assess them.

Familiarize yourself with all the pertinent property information, such as: building rules and regulations, utility information, schedule of garbage collection, entry systems, PM schedules and more. By knowing all of these, you can eliminate several phone calls to your landlord and will keep your communication lines agreeable. 

Know the exact process for contacting your landlord in case of any questions or repair issues. By following the landlord’s preferred process, you instantly become “easier to work with” than the tenant who contacts the landlord by some other means. Landlords are also likely to respond more quickly to those who operate the way that they prefer to operate.


Tenancy Stage: Keep the property in good condition



Pay your rent and utility bills on time. Try to get the payment done a few days before it is due, and let your landlord know beforehand if you think you may be late due to unavoidable circumstances. Actions like these help build trust and cement a good relationship.

Major damages should be reported to your landlord right away. Prompt reporting provides quicker action and prevents further damage to the property. However, there is no need to call the landlord every time for minor repair works that you can fix yourself. Landlords are more willing and helpful than people give them credit for, and many are committed to providing their tenants with the best living standards possible.

Hygiene comes before anything else. Make sure to dispose your garbage regularly, cleaning the whole apartment especially the bathrooms and kitchen, and keeping the apartment clutter free in general.

Above all else, good communication is the key to any relationship, and this is no exception either. No matter how annoyed you feel, a mature conversation can make the relationship between landlord and tenant highly satisfying. Having a great landlord-tenant relationship can make tenancy comfortable and easy and that can set you up for success for your lease term and beyond.
 

Related Experts

Fenella Rabatan

Client Services Associate

Manila

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