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Good tenants: Low-down check

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Landlords and real estate agents don’t want to lose great tenants, but what exactly is a good tenant? Property professionals from Just Property share their checklist:

Good preparation: Having a clear idea of what they want in a property saves time and impresses a managing agent, says Joe Alves, Just Property agent for Blouberg. A list of musthaves should include how many bedrooms and bathrooms they want, as well as parking spaces or garages. Other inclusions should be whether a property is pet-friendly, the level of security needed and location.

Understanding the lease process: Tenants must ask the important questions before signing the lease, recommends Laureen Leps from Just Property Atlantic Seaboard. This makes for better landlord/tenant relations as everyone knows where they stand. “Ask for an explanation around any points you don’t understand and establish upfront whether there are any additional costs over and above the monthly rental… ” Documents required for the initial credit check must be ready to submit at the start.

Pay on time: Once the lease is signed, make sure all rental and other costs are paid timeously. This is the most important aspect of being a tenant that agents will be happy to recommend to landlords.

Taking care: Great tenants keep their properties in good condition and always ask permission before making changes, such as painting or knocking nails into walls, notes Just Property Blouberg agent, Marilize Prinsloo. “Every good tenant will also restore what has been changed to its original condition when vacating the property.” Tenants should also communicate problems such as water leaks; trees/ plants that are damaging the building or fences; keep the property clean inside and out and be happy to do general day-to-day maintenance and small repairs themselves.

Neighbourly behaviour: Good tenants do not cause disturbances and are considerate of their neighbours, says Just Property Middelburg agent Mariëtte Oosthuizen. They are then in a position to try to solve problems with neighbours rather than with the agent.

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