Texas is the number one state for real estate investment in the nation thanks to a lack of state property taxes and a steady increase in value. Bryan, Texas is a great place to own rental properties thanks to its proximity to A&M.
That said, finding the right place to invest is only half the battle. Keeping your rental property full and well-maintained is an ongoing job.
To avoid things like property damage, tenant disputes, and evictions, lease enforcement is key. As experienced Bryan, TX property managers, we're here to share our insights.
Read on for three tips that will improve your lease enforcement.
1. Use Clear Language in Your Lease
The first step is to ensure that your lease creates crystal clear expectations. List in plain and direct language the rules you expect tenants to adhere to. This can include things like the hours when excessive noise is prohibited, whether or not tenants can paint or put holes in walls, and, of course, how much the tenant owes in rent.
In addition, the lease should clearly state the repercussions of breaking these rules. For example, charging a late fee can discourage tenants from paying rent late. Make sure to state the amount and when the late fee kicks in (i.e., five days after the first of every month).
2. Provide Written Warnings
In the worst-case scenario, you may have to evict tenants who repeatedly break the rules outlined in your lease. To evict a tenant, you must make sure to follow Texas state eviction laws.
The best way to protect yourself from liability in the event of an eviction is to have documentation of the issues that led to it. Any time a tenant breaks the lease (e.g., by paying rent late or receiving noise complaints from neighbors), make sure to issue them a written warning, even if they don't yet owe a fine.
3. Practice Consistent Lease Enforcement
As a property owner, it is inappropriate (and in many cases illegal) to show favoritism toward one tenant over another. In other words, it doesn't matter which of your tenants broke the lease. You should always enforce the lease consistently with every tenant.
Consistent lease enforcement can also prevent problems from escalating. If you know that a tenant broke one of your rules and you let it slide, you're sending the message that it doesn't really matter. This can lead to bigger problems, including neighbor disputes and property damage.
Need a Bryan, TX Property Manager?
Lease enforcement is one of the most important things you can do when you own a rental property. Not only does it protect your property but it protects the best interests of all of your tenants, which can keep tenant turnover rates low.
If you're looking for a more hands-off property owner experience or you're struggling to keep up with tenant relations and maintenance, it's time to hire a property manager. Blue Ribbon Property Management has years of experience managing rental properties in College Station and Bryan, TX. Contact us today to learn more.