Being a landlord can be a demanding yet rewarding initiative. Once you’ve listed your home, apartment, or condo for rent, there are several important things to consider if you want to maintain a good relationship with your tenant.
In large municipalities in Ontario like Mississauga, Markham, Whitby, and Toronto, the market is fairly competitive and there is almost always a large pool of renters. In this article, we are going to provide some general tips that will help you identify the right type of tenants, while also maintaining a positive relationship with them.
1. Do a Background Check on Potential Tenants
We emphasize the importance of performing a thorough credit check on potential tenants prior to completing a rental agreement. This will save you from problems collecting rent in the future among other potential surprises. A good benchmark is for the tenant’s income to be approximately three times the amount of the rental payment. It is also recommended to ask for and consider references from previous landlords if they are available.
Also, keep in mind any anti-discrimination laws for your province. In many cities in Ontario, for instance, it’s illegal for landlords to discriminate on race and gender among other factors.
2. Use the Ontario Standard Lease Guidelines
Before you list your home, apartment, or condo for rent, you’re going to need to prepare a thorough lease agreement.
Luckily for Ontarians, lease documents were standardized by the Ontario government when they implemented standard lease laws in April 2018. These laws require landlords to provide mandatory fields like the names of the landlord and renter, the tenancy term, rent amount, any services included, and other terms that are being added to the lease. In addition, these new guidelines allow for optional additional terms, and general information regarding situations like ending a tenancy, subletting, pets, guests, and more.
It’s always recommended to have a lawyer look through your standard rental agreement to ensure that it conforms to all legal requirements. A well drafted lease agreement in compliance with all provincial laws will stand a better chance of holding up in court should any contentious issues arise.
3. Stay Up to Date on Laws Regarding Listing an Apartment for Rent in Ontario
Certain provinces and cities set up basic requirements for renting a space. For many locations, heating, water and electricity must be provided. For example,
- Oakville requires different classes of licences for different classifications of rental properties.
- Barrie, like many cities, adopts Ontario’s policies on fire safety.
- Toronto has a webpage for all of its regulations.
Also take the following into account:
- There are limits on how much you can increase rent per year.
- Most provinces do not permit entering your tenants’ property without good reason or prior notice.
Read up on your local laws before listing your home for rent.
4. Give a Warm Welcome to New Tenants – Respect Goes a Long Way
As a landlord, your top priority is your property. Renting your property out to tenants requires a certain degree of trust. Having said that, you should always try and show your new tenants respect if you want them to respect your property. Start by getting to know them, discussing the city if they are new to it, and demonstrating that you are easily accessible should they need to be in contact with you. Also, consider creating a simple brochure listing important contact details and other local attractions including the following:
- Local Grocery Stores
- And other areas of interest
Something which is certainly not required, but is being done by some landlords lately has been to keep some basics ready for when a new tenant moves in. In some cases, landlords are providing bath tissue, a few bars of soap, and other essentials. You can even provide a few bottles of water and light snacks. Little gestures like this go a long way, and will help you start your new relationship with your tenants in a positive way.
5. Communication Is Key
One of the best things you can do as a landlord once your tenants have settled in is be available and communicate clearly with them when it is necessary. Whether you make yourself available for repair requests, to discuss changes to the lease, or just to check in to make sure everything is functioning as it should, good communication not only protects your property and investment, but it also makes you an active and reliable landlord too.
And always outline any specific rules that you have in your lease. While many landlords in Ontario try and forbid pets, in most cases, this request is illegal and something that cannot be enforced in most cases. If you are trying to keep your property pet-free, not only will you need to communicate this clearly when screening tenants, but you’ll have to find a way to determine if they actually have pets or not. This is where communication comes into play and the importance of communicating early on.
6. Maintain the Property
While this next topic appears obvious, many landlords choose to neglect it. If you want your tenants to respect your property, take the time to keep the interior and exterior clean and presentable before listing the home or apartment for rent, be willing to fix issues as they arise, and respect the fact that your tenant is paying to rent your property.
About LeaseOurHouse.com – List Your Rental Property in Toronto & the GTA, Mississauga, Oshawa, Ajax, Whitby, Markham, Oakville, Ontario
When you are ready to list your apartment, condo, or house for rent, LeaseOurHouse.com is your one-stop destination for streamlining the rental process.
As a landlord, some of the advantages you’ll enjoy include:
- Increased Exposure: We advertise your listing on our social media channels.
- Mobile app support with live notifications.
- Assurance that every tenant you talk to is genuinely interested (tenants must create an account and ask for a viewing request prior to you being notified).
- No upfront fees, exclusivity, or commitments: We only charge 25% of the first month’s rent if you approve and select a tenant that we provide.
- We provide a FREE simplified credit check and a reference guide that provides tips to checking references and getting the most value out of them.
We have packaged our 20 years of experience in the rental property industry, bringing you the most effective and user-friendly online rental website and platform. Visit our website today. It has never been this easy to list your property and find great tenants, whether you’re renting a property in Toronto, the GTA, Mississauga, Markham, Whitby, Hamilton, Ottawa and many other locations throughout Ontario.