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Every Once In A While, A Tenant Will Surprise Me.

Had some tenants in a rental home for nearly 10 years.  They finally decided to buy a home.  As sad as I was to see them go – it was a good long run – a few bumps along the way – but nothing one could not work through.

The biggest problem I’ve had with these folks over the years – they weren’t the cleanest.  So the inside of the house always looked rough, and the yard work seemed to be our every few month call with the tenant answering with these words, “Is this the yard work reminder call?!”

Needless to say, after 10 years, I was expecting to roll up my sleeves and really spend time and money getting the home fixed.  On final walk thru day, imagine my surprise when I walked in and no kidding, if I have to change a light bulb I will be surprised.  The house was immaculate – painted, cleaned, any damage to walls with nails, etc., repaired, new blinds, I didn’t even recognize the yard it was so clean.

After talking with the tenants, I asked them, “Why, what..really??” They simply responded with a few things that all landlords can learn from:

You always treated us fair – and gave breaks when we needed it.

You just took care of things right away – and never questioned if it was our fault or not.

You never raised our rent.

You sent us cards and other nice surprises over the years.

We could always get you by phone or in person.

You just always treated us nice.

I am not the perfect landlord, and often a reward for being a good landlord doesn’t always come, but when it does – the advice is – do your best, be your best and one day, don’t be surprised when you get surprised!

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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 5 commentsGabrielle Kamahele Rhind • December 15 2013 04:25AM


Certainly the exception these days. I am evicting tenants for a new client right now. Not a happy deal, but life goes on. LUCKY you!! to have tenants that moved on and left no trace. I think not raising the rent may be part of the reason.

Posted by Janis Borgueta, LIC RE Salesperson (Key Properties of the Hudson Valley ) over 5 years ago

I've handled rental property for many years, and, yes, it means so much just to be courteous, understanding and fair ... to treat both the tenants AND the property with respect....

I know all the arguments in favor of raising rents ... Especially if it is an apartment building, the building's value is in large part determined by the cash flow it generates ...

But I also have learned there is sometimes great value in leavings things well enough alone ..... :-)

Posted by Cheryl Johnson over 5 years ago

Hi Gabrielle - sometime4s just treating some one right with fairness, dignity and respect can generate a lot of good will. Glad to see you received a direct payback from your generosity. Well done.

Posted by Jeff Fritzson: Frisco Real Estate Pro, Your Success is My Focus! (Jeff Fritzson Real Estate, Ebby Halliday Realtors) over 5 years ago

Doesn't surprise me in the least that Gabi would make a tenant so happy that they would feel guilty if they didn't fix up the home to broom swept condition. 

Posted by Florida Tolbert Team Keller Williams Advantage, Keller Williams Land Division Specialist (Keller Williams Advantage III Realty in Lake Nona) over 5 years ago

It doesn't happen often enough, Gabrielle, but when someone recognizes just how well you treated them and then re-pay the kindness, it's a great feeling.

Posted by Gabe Sanders, Stuart Florida Real Estate (Real Estate of Florida specializing in Martin County Residential Homes, Condos and Land Sales) over 5 years ago

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