With national vacancy rates at their highest levels in 23 years, Minneapolis duplex owners are having to resort to innovative strategies to attract and keep tenants.
While a fresh coat of paint, new carpet and a move-in incentive like one month free can help attract new tenants, what about keeping the ones you already have?
According to a recent article in the Wall Street Journal, more landlords are finding themselves in a position of having to negotiate. The Journal reports that in a recent survey conducted by the National Association of Independent Landlords, more than two thirds of independent landlords will reduce rent in order to keep a tenant, while almost one-third of them already have in the last 18 months.
At first glance, this study is frightening. If all tenants want to renegotiate the terms of their lease, won’t we be unable to pay our bills?
Consider this. A vacancy caused by an unwillingness to either establish a payment plan for a delinquent tenant or offer, say, a five percent discount to one who is struggling economically can cost you far more than the initial concession.
Turning a unit for a new tenant not only often costs you paint, cleaning, and repairs caused by normal wear and tear on a unit, but the lost revenue during the vacancy as well. In other words, potentially thousands of dollars vs. say, a discount of 5 percent as an incentive for a tenant to say.
Of course, you can’t be a doormat either. Some people in life will mistake your kindness for weakness, and exploit it accordingly.
But offering understanding to the tenants who’ve proven themselves, can be a a great way for you both to survive.