Five Tips for Commercial Tenant Retention

5 TipsRecently, we asked Daniel Sherman, VP of Property Management at Crunkleton & Associates, his thoughts on tenant retention for commercial properties.  Below was his response.

It’s less expensive for the landlord to keep a current tenant than to find a new one.  Though hiring a company that specializes in property management is the most effective way to increase your tenant retention rate, the following five tips will help serve as a good start:

1. Get to Know Your Tenant

Landlords and tenants are really in business together with the success of each contributing to the success of the other.  Property management is still a people business; going out of the way to meet with the tenants can lead to a longer more meaningful relationship.

2. Don’t Become Complacent

A long-term tenant is a valuable asset in any type of market.  Make sure you keep on top of all those little jobs that will make it easier for the tenant to feel like it is a good working environment.

  • Maintain the property in the best possible condition
  • When the tenant reports maintenance problems, sort them out immediately
  • Communicate consistently with the tenant and follow up when necessary

3. Be Considerate

Always be fair-minded and understanding.  Don’t act like the tenant is ‘bothering’ you when they call.  Be pleasant and show concern for their needs.  Never ignore questions.

4. Replace a Minor Item at Least Once Every Year

Have a plan to maintain the property on an annual and rotating basis so you are constantly generating a fresh appearance. Keeping up with some of the competing buildings will make a tenant see you care about the property and they will be less inclined to look around for unnecessary reasons. Amortized over time, the minor expenses don’t cost that much.  Plus, they will be attractive to new tenants, and they increase the value of the space.

5. Be Pro-active 

Perform regularly scheduled “preventative maintenance checks.”  Make sure the tenants are aware of when such things are scheduled.  Performing these checks demonstrates a proactive approach as opposed to a “wait and see” and allows you to find issues before they escalate to a stage where they hand in their notice. Always ask if everything is acceptable or if the tenant has any problems.


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