Four Tricky Prospective Tenant Questions – And How to Answer Them

When you’ve got a prospective tenant in front of you, you want to impress them with your charm – and your property, of course. But for many property managers, this interaction can invite dicey questions they don’t have the first clue how to answer! Cal Bay Property Management’s Scott Safadi has all the advice you need. Check out our guide to four of the trickiest questions – and how to answer them:
1. How’s the crime in your area?
Honesty is the best policy with this question. It pays to be forthright about your area’s crime levels. Don’t downplay break-ins and burglaries – you’ll pay for it later. Feel uncomfortable discussing crime rates? Refer the tenant to the local police station.
2. Do you allow pets?
Hopefully, you’ll have a very clear pet policy hammered out before a prospective tenant ever has a chance to ask. But some folks with exotic pets like parrots and snakes may not fall within your guidelines. Clearly outline what the consequences are for property damage and come to a compromise with the tenant.
3. Can we have a shorter lease?
Most property managers demand a one-year lease from new tenants, but if you’re willing to be flexible, you can decrease your vacancy rate. Commit to a policy before this question is asked!
4. When can we move in?
This is a great question to hear – you’re obviously doing something right! It’s tempting to toss out a date and make everyone happy. But be certain that the date is indeed okay for move-in – you risk annoying the prospective tenant if that has to change.
– Scott Safadi, Cal Bay Property Management
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