Lease Enforcement: A Guide for Landlords in Albany, NY

Lease Enforcement: A Guide for Landlords in Albany, NY

Most landlords in Albany, NY, have a lease agreement with their tenants. A rental lease doesn't just specify how long the tenant will occupy the property before a renewal is needed. It also fleshes out the landlord's rental rules, which the tenant must follow.

Although a lease is designed to protect your investment, a lot will depend on how steadfast you are about enforcing your rules and punishing violations. Unfortunately, many landlords struggle with lease enforcement. Whether it's because you're an absentee landlord or simply don't have the time, failing to enforce tenant leases is as bad as having no lease at all.

This guide will help you stay on top of lease enforcement.

Create Strong Lease Agreements

A lease agreement can be as simple as or as complex depending on the needs of the involved parties. In a landlord-tenant relationship, though, it's the landlord who determines the nature of the lease agreement.

If you wish, you can have as few conditions on the lease as possible, but that won't be a good lease for a rental property. It needs to be detailed, covering all possible aspects of property management, including landlord and tenant rights.

A strong agreement makes enforcement easier. For example, if you don't want tenants to keep certain types of pets, put it in the lease agreement.

If a tenant violates the rule, you can send them a notice indicating the rule they're violating. Without it being in the agreement, a determined tenant can ignore your notices and even dare you to sue them in court.

Act on Complaints

More often than not, you'll learn about a tenant who's violating terms of their lease from other tenants - if it's a multi-unit property.

If someone's always playing loud music and this violates your noise policy, it won't be long before other tenants reach out to you with a complaint. Or perhaps someone is keeping a pet dog that barks endlessly.

Acting swiftly on such complaints is a good lease enforcement measure. It will let the tenant know that you don't tolerate lease violations. This can help deter them from violating your rules in the future.

Have a Two/Three-Strike Policy

Sending a warning to an errant tenant can suffice, but it's not always effective. Some tenants can ignore your warning and go ahead and do whatever they wish.

Operating a two to three-strike policy can help in such cases. Include the consequences of each violation in the lease agreement, and make it clear that two or three violations will be adequate grounds for evictions.

Most tenants don't want to go through an eviction because of the hassle of finding another rental, so they'll be more inclined to follow your rules.

Leave Lease Enforcement to Property Managers

Lease enforcement isn't an easy job. Depending on the number of tenants, you could be dealing with lease violation issues every other day.

Your best move is to leave your job to a full-service property management firm. In Albany, NY, that firm is PMI Capital District. We're part of a national property management organization that has been in the business for over 20 years.

Call us today to experience the PMI difference.