How To Avoid Running Into Mortgage Paying Trouble for Stafford Homeowners

When times get tough both the tenant and the landlord can be in distress. When the tenant doesn’t pay the rent-most landlords can’t pay the mortgage. The majority of landlords in Virginia own only 1 or 2 properties while maintaining a full-time job. Below are a few things a landlord can do to help ensure the mortgage is paid.

Keep the properties occupied! It is simple but incredibly effective. Don’t wait until the last minute to advertise for a new tenant. Don’t put off screening or vetting applicants because you are busy or overworked. Recognize filling vacancies is one of your primary responsibilities as a landlord. A few extra weeks or even a month of an unoccupied property can cover a costly repair bill or another unexpected expense.

Finding good, quality tenants is key! While keeping your properties full is of utmost importance, finding quality tenants is just as crucial if not more important than keeping properties occupied. Run background and credit checks-every time. Call their references and prior landlords. Leave no stone unturned. The difference between having a good and a bad tenant is night and day. A good one pays on time, notifies you of potential maintenance issues, and is respectful to your property. A bad one-well I’m sure you have had one or heard stories of one…

Look for long-term tenants. Don’t assume that quality tenants will be long-term ones. Some quality renters may be students or working a temporary job. They may just be living here waiting to move or retire somewhere else. Ask questions that are fair housing compliant and that don’t discriminate. Whenever possible opt for long-term renters when the choice is available. The less turnover the better!

This is a big one-don’t be a landlord that puts off maintenance! Keep the property kept up and in working condition. Deal with issues quickly and properly! No shortcuts should be taken. The less you have to interrupt the tenant’s daily life, the better. Upgrade appliances when the time comes and opt for the appropriate fixtures for your home and its clientele/area. Respond to your tenants’ calls quickly, or let them know that you’ll be unavailable for a while.

Being a good landlord will help you establish lasting relationships with your tenants, which will in turn, will encourage them to stay in your property longer. Even an average tenant can be turned into a great one simply because they want to keep that relationship intact.

It’s important to do all you can to avoid getting to the point where the mortgage can’t be paid. By following the above tips you can work towards having tenants that stay, pay and display respect for your property.

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