The end of 2021 is fast approaching, and the start of 2022 is a good time to re-think and refine your role as a Landlord and set your resolutions. Here are six resolutions that we believe should be on Landlords ‘to do’ lists in 2021.

Resolution #1 I will visit my investment

When did you last visit your investment property to check its condition for yourself? Even a dream tenant may not report every single issue that needs fixing. Organise a suitable time with your property manager, and of course your tenants, to do an inspection of the property. Walkthrough with a critical eye and if something needs to be fixed, take care of it quickly. By staying across any repairs that are needed, you will help ensure your tenants are happy and take care of your property, which makes landlords happy too!

Resolution #2 I will create a maintenance and repair protocol

Quick and efficient processing of all maintenance requests should be a priority. Talk to your property manager and agree on a protocol around how you want them to proceed to fix different issues that may arise. It is also worth giving them specific instructions as to what repairs can be organised on your behalf if you happen to be unreachable. Plus, discuss how they currently handle and report maintenance complaints and their expected timings for completion.

Resolution #3 I will organise my paperwork

It’s no one’s favourite job but paperwork is well worth doing. There is a huge amount of documentation involved in owning a property and it is important to keep it safe for the duration of your ownership and for up to seven years after you sell the property. An organised filing system for quick access is ideal and should include original purchase documents, all invoices including legal and agent fees and other associated costs, home loan statements, invoices relating to any work you have had done on the property. Additionally, if you have ever lived in the property you should keep evidence of the time spent there as it could reduce your tax liability.

Resolution #4 I will spring clean my investments

It is no surprise that well-maintained and presented properties attract and retain better tenants, yield higher rent, and add value to your investment. Consider painting the walls or sanding the floorboards. Perhaps retile the bathroom or give the kitchen a quick makeover. Don’t forget the garden if you own a house. Refresh the mulch, weed the garden beds, and consider adding some flowering plants for a splash of colour. Clean any external lighting and windows and check if the entertaining deck needs any repairs. Not only will your tenants love the clean-up, but it will also add considerable appeal to your property.

Resolution #5 I will be ready to act quickly

As a property investor, if you are looking at expanding your portfolio in 2021, being financially prepared is key. Have you considered your budget and price range, have you done your research, and identified where you would like to buy? Buying a property is a big decision and you don’t want to feel rushed without thinking through your options, but indecision can keep you from what could potentially be a rewarding decision. Talk to your home loan provider and get pre-approval so you are ready to take advantage of the right opportunity if it comes along.

Resolution #6 I will plan my budget

With the current low-interest rates, you may think that the extra bit of cash will be around if needed. But things change and interest rates will undoubtedly rise, so it never hurts to have a bit of money saved up on the side to pay for unexpected costs. Additionally, it is important that you have a clear view as to how much you are spending on your investment. Start by
monitoring and documenting every expense over a month. This will help you create an accurate budget and identify any expenses you can remove going forward.

Finally, remember that a property manager can be a valuable advisor for your investment property strategy, help you attract the best tenants, maximise rental income, and enhance your property’s value.

This story first appeared in LJ Hooker.