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Early Warning Signs For Bad Tenants

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When it comes to being a landlord of multiple properties, you’d be hard pressed to go a year without having to deal with a nightmare tenant or two. They come in all creeds and colours, and can sometimes be harder to tackle than you’re capable of. Learning how to deal with them sufficiently without having a battle on your hands is vital in keeping your cool and holding up your reputation as a landlord. There are a few ways in which you can instantly tell if a tenant is going to be tricky or not, and spotting them early can save you weeks or even months of hassle and heartache.


You’d think this was a no brainer, but some newer landlords can become blind to it if all they’re worried about is getting a return on the money they spent. Simple things such as taking your shoes off at the door can tell you a lot about how a person behaves from day to day. If they’re more than happy to walk through a strangers house with mucky feet chances are they’re not all too concerned about their hygiene, which is definitely a concern of yours! This isn’t to say they wouldn’t happily clean it up, but in most instances you should be wary.



This is something to watch out for as only those with good timekeeping should be worthy of residency in your property. In the first instance you should be paying close attention to whether or not they rock up late to the property viewing. If you’ve been prewarned of their lateness then it’s down to your own judgement, but if they show up late with no valid reasoning you probably don’t want to be dealing with them down the line. These are the kind of people who are likely to be late on rent or not be available when you need to access the property.


Everyone these days is looking to save a penny or two but when it comes to property things tend to be a bit more black and white. You will have already done a lot of number crunching to figure out the best rental price to suit both you and your prospective tenants. There will be a handful of people who fall in love with the place, but not the price. Never cave in on the price you set out to get, not even if you like the look of the tenants. Anyone that tries to bargain with the price clearly doesn’t love the property enough to pay the asking price.

Mixed Schedules

In a similar vein to timekeeping those who can never make certain dates or times should be kept a close eye on. A busy tenant usually indicates that they will never have the time to take care of the property to it’s fullest, or will complain about a maintenance issues but never agree a suitable day and time for a handyman to come in and deal with it. This is especially tedious if they’re late on rent and you’ve been chasing them for weeks. You’re better off cutting them off.


You’ll likely hear back from a few people about your property, and hopefully a good portion of them are already prepared for a move. However there are some people that go to view a property but still don’t have the money to actually secure it. These people are not ready to invest your time and resources and need to be stopped in their tracks until they’re better prepared. If they don’t have the money now, who says they’ll have the money for rent later on?


Personal Hygiene

This can be something you can test on a few different levels. Poor personal hygiene is always a sign of worse things to come so spotting it early prevents any I told you so’s. In terms of their clothing choice you can’t discriminate too much as someone in a tracksuit could have thousands in savings. Instead look at things such as their smell and their fingernails. Their smell can demonstrate if they wash regularly as well as being a tell tale sign of whether they are a smoker. Dirty fingernails also rings alarms in terms of hygiene. You’re advertising a rental property, not a squat.


You could have created the perfect deal with reasonable rent, brand new appliances and council tax catered for but you will still get one or two people asking for more than they perhaps deserve. Some people are only asking out of interest, but those who insist you include more in the price are on their high horse and shouldn’t get the chance. The tone that some people take is enough to figure out if they’re the right crowd. After all there is a big difference between ‘could you please remove your furnishings so we can use our own?’ and ‘you’ll need to remove your furnishings as we have better stuff’.


In an ideal world you’d like someone in your property to be as responsive and active about the whole thing as you are. This regards things like paying rent on, early or completely in advance as well as notifying you as soon as an issue pops up. If however the people you are dealing with take weeks to get back to you on the most simple of things then maybe they shouldn’t be given any privileges. You need to be able to reach them in case of last minute emergencies which isn’t ideal if they don’t answer their phones, and you don’t want to have to drag yourself over there just to clarify something.

If you think someone is going to be an issue then look into it and think hard about whether you think you’ll get on with them. Only those who impress you should be given a shot, however the choice is entirely yours. Choose wisely.

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