Rental property owners recognize that one of the most important steps in the process is executing the lease. We often talk about pre-screening and tenant satisfaction tips. But there are also best practices when it comes time to sign the lease. To avoid issues down the road, here are a few lease agreement execution steps you can consider when it’s time to put ink to paper.
Explanation of Lease Terms
When you reach the point at which you and your prospective renter are ready to sign the lease, you have an additional opportunity to explain the lease terms. Even if you feel you’ve already discussed the details prior to this engagement, reviewing the lease again will ensure your terms are understood. You don’t necessarily have to reiterate your terms with every lease-signing. And we certainly don’t recommend hand-holding through every engagement. However, it can be another opportune time to talk about payment channels and due dates. Cover your requirements for insurance or pets. And don’t be afraid to simply ask if there are any questions. Doing so can help you address any sticking points now and avoid issues later, especially if later you’re required to enforce any of those lease terms or move forward with any disciplinary actions.
An Opportunity to Address Questions
Taking the time to walk through the lease terms will also present an opportunity for your new renters to ask any additional questions. While you might feel comfortable you have already explained the details, during the lease execution, new questions might need answering. Maybe it’s a reminder about the trash pick-up schedule, policies about duplicate keys, or confirming methods for rent payment. These kinds of questions are best addressed before signing the lease.
Lease Signing Options
Execution of the lease itself may require options, especially in today’s socially distanced environment. Consider adding digital signature channels to your process and having a virtual meeting to address questions. It can greatly simplify the transaction, making it an efficient step for both you and your tenants. If your new renters don’t have digital access because of the move, you can also look into other remote signing options, including mailing documents or an old-fashioned in-person meeting (socially distanced, of course.)
Records, Copies, and Renewals
Another step to executing the lease agreement involves having a plan in place for record-keeping and lease renewals. Once your new tenant signs the lease, encourage him or her to accept a copy for future reference. Avoid issues down the road, too, by discussing your process for lease renewals. Typically, you might reach out to renters 90 days prior to the ending of the lease to address interests in renewing. But talking about these steps upfront will also be helpful in setting the expectations with your tenants about your process.
Avoid lease disagreements, misunderstandings, and issues by taking the time to incorporate these tips into your execution process. And if you feel your lease execution strategy could use improvement, contact us! Having a professional rental property management partner can ensure you execute your lease agreements flawlessly.
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