Kwaba Blog

5 Qualities of an Ideal Tenant

As a good landlord, you should go to great lengths to find an ideal tenant for your rental property. An ideal tenant will often reduce your maintenance costs, minimise wear and tear, as well as look after your property as if it were their own. They are worth their weight in gold and can really add to the value of your property. Bad tenants on the other hand can be everyone’s nightmare – they might pay their rent late, cause havoc with the neighbours, treat an owner’s property like a tip, unreasonably demand endless costly repairs or even make the EFCC knock on your doors. It may take a little time and patience, but it’s worth putting the right tenant in your apartment rental. 

Luckily, there are things to look for in potential renters, and keeping an eye out for them will help make the process easier. Here are the characteristics of an Ideal renter:

1. A good credit and criminal history check

credit score report

The first, and arguably most important, thing to do when looking for ideal tenants is renter screening, which will include looking at their credit score as well as their criminal and eviction history. A good credit score indicates that they’re financially stable and clear their dues in time. So, it’s more likely that they won’t delay the payment of the house rent.

Would you want to rent out your property to a person who has been involved in criminal activities? Probably no! Verifying the identity of potential tenants and running a background check to determine whether they have a history of getting into trouble with the law or not will protect you from legal issues down the line.

Kwaba has just built a rent management platform for landlords, property managers and agents alike to help perform good background check on potential and active renters. You can signup for free on the Kwaba landlord portal today to start screening your tenants.

2. Timeliness and Accountability

Being on time and accountable

If you’ve set up an inspection of the apartment, you should expect your potential renter to be early or at least on time to the appointment. Arriving late and having an excuse for doing so shows that the person doesn’t respect your time. People who return your phone calls and emails promptly usually make good tenants. If you have to wait a few days or weeks for them to respond to even a non-urgent matter, they probably don’t value this living situation as much as you’d like. Having a renter who is responsive and willing to work with you efficiently is a great sign.

3. Responsible behaviour

Having a face-to-face, sit down “interview” with a potential renter is a good time to gauge that the qualities that the tenant possesses. When meeting potential tenants, it is important to consider their appearance. If they’re well-dressed, it’s more likely that they prefer living in a clean environment. A good tenant is respectful towards the landlords. So, evaluate the behaviour of potential tenants when interviewing them. Do they answer your questions in a polite way? Are they argumentative when asked a question they don’t like? Do they get quarrelsome or defensive during the interview? Take note of any personality traits that they display during the interview; remember that you will have an ongoing relationship with this person, and if your personalities clash, it might not be a good fit.

4. They won’t make financial excuses

Man on edge at an interview

If there was something a bit off in their credit check, you might want to ask about it in the face-to-face interview. When a prospective renter answers the tough questions in a straightforward, upfront way, it may set your mind at ease. If they skirt around the questions or seem to have multiple excuses for their financial troubles, they might not be the right tenant for your rental.

However, if paying your bulk rent at the time was the challenge they might have, you can be the nicest landlord by offering a more convenient payment plan. Refer them to use Kwaba Rent Now Pay Later to sort out the bulk rent  while they split their payment into convenient monthly instalment. It’s a win-win for everyone. You get to keep the tenants and they get to keep their desired apartment.

Sign up on the Kwaba Landlord Portal today to better manage your properties.

5. They ask questions, too

Prospective tenants asking questions from landlord

Your prospective renter should want to know about you, too. A good tenant will want to know your history as a landlord, if this is your only job, how much time you dedicate to your rentals, and a variety of other things. The more they want to know about you as a landlord, the better.

While all these qualities can be good indicators, there’s only one way to know if you’ve found the ideal renter and that’s by conducting a proper tenant verification check on Kwaba.

If you found this article helpful, you can also read;

Mistakes every landlord should avoid in Nigeria

How to end a tenancy agreement

Raji Oluwaseun

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