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You May Get The Home You Want, But You Might Not Get The Landlord You Want.

At times renters will be so excited about a home, that they ignore the landlord - thinking if they pay rent on time - they can tolerate a potentially bad one. 

But it isn’t always that easy – a tenant should'nt just look at the home when looking for a place to live – but also  the landlord - because a bad landlord can turn a great home - not so great.

Some basic tips for determining if you’ll have a good landlord:

Let’s start with the DIY vs professional property manager. There are some great DIY landlords, but there are many who aren't and all they care about is getting rent money.  Then there are the professional managers who often fall into the same category. Interview a landlord, and include checking public records to find out how many times that person or company has been in court.  The higher the number, the more likely, they aren’t a good landlord.

Next, when talking to the landlord – listen carefully.  Look for basic things - do they seem to have some common sense?  If you point out an issue, what is their response?  Is your income and credit the focus of the discussion?  You can tell a lot by a person simply by listening.

How did the landlord treat you from the beginning?  Were your calls promptly returned?  Did he/she show up on time?  Were they prepared for the showing? Did they interact with you as an individual or as just another tenant with a goal of getting the place rented?  Pay attention to interactions – if the landlord treats you with respect from the beginning, it’s likely to continue.

Does the landlord seem to know it all?  If they do, get your guard up.  Sounds silly – but seriously, know it all landlords tend to not know enough.  Often when a tenant asks  questions, even if I think I know, I take the time to say, “Let me double check to make sure!”  You want a landlord that does know what they are doing – but you have to make sure they really do.

Are you able to get the landlord to laugh, joke and engage in personal discussions?  I tend to think that if someone doesn’t have a sense of humor, they are probably going to be very difficult and rigid to work with.

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This blog is written with my opinions and my opinions are  presented with accuracy but not guarantees. Please talk to a professional before making any real estate, financial or agency decisions.    Gabrielle Kamahele Rhind - 2014. If you want to reprint parts of this - just email me for my permission: .


Comment balloon 6 commentsGabrielle Kamahele Rhind • November 19 2012 03:31AM


More rental prospects are telling me about their experiences with DIY landlords and real estate agents who 1) can't answer the questions they ask; and 2) the property is NOT in move-in CONDITION!

Posted by Wallace S. Gibson, CPM, LandlordWhisperer (Gibson Management Group, Ltd.) over 6 years ago

Good morning, Gab..... not everyone should be a landlord.... I'm one of those people!!  hope all is well...

Posted by Barbara Todaro, Marketing Agent for The Todaro Team (RE/MAX Executive Realty ) over 6 years ago

Gabrielle - I have a landlord who appears not to have a sense of humor.  Actually the truth is that the landlord is one of those bottom line people.  The landlord has been extremely fair and easy to work with as long as I remember to get to the bottom line quickly in our conversations.  Thanks for the blog.

Posted by Steve Ewing - Keller Williams Realty (Keller Williams) over 6 years ago

Unfortunately there are many landlords do not take care of the property . 

Posted by Gita Bantwal, REALTOR,ABR,CRS,SRES,GRI - Bucks County & Philadel (RE/MAX Centre Realtors) over 6 years ago

I am a do it your self landlord of 4 rentals. I do keep up on state laws and tentant rights. I must not be to bad. My current renters have all been with me from 3-11 years.

Posted by Rob D. Shepherd, Principal Broker GRI, SRES (Windermere/lane county) over 6 years ago


Great point a bad landlord can be a nightmare.

Good luck and success.

Lou Ludwig

Posted by Lou Ludwig, Designations Earned CRB, CRS, CIPS, GRI, SRES, TRC (Ludwig & Associates) over 6 years ago

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