Baltimore Property Management Services, Lease Renewal

Renters Warehouse BW Metro | September 18, 2023

Our Insights Into How and When to Do a Lease Renewal In Baltimore

When managing rental properties and working toward financial goals, a lease renewal is more than just paperwork; it's an opportunity. 

It's a chance to maintain a consistent income, build a lasting relationship with your tenants, and, essentially, safeguard your investment property. In a market as dynamic as Baltimore, understanding the intricacies of lease renewals is vital for property owners and landlords. 

Today, we share some of our experienced insights into when to offer a lease renewal, why it's a financially sound decision, how to go about the process, and what options you have if you choose not to renew with a tenant. Whether you're a seasoned property owner or a newcomer to rental properties, this guide will give you the tools to make informed decisions about a lease renewal agreement.

When Should Property Owners Offer a Lease Renewal?

Timing can be the difference between retaining a good tenant and facing a vacant unit. For property owners and landlords, understanding the ideal timing for offering a lease renewal is crucial to minimizing turnover and maintaining a steady rental income. 

From our experience offering professional Baltimore property management services, we recommend offering a lease renewal to initiate the process approximately 90 days before the existing lease agreement ends. 

Why 90 days? This timeframe offers several advantages that benefit both property owners and tenants alike.

First, the 90-day period provides enough time for you, as a property owner, to assess the tenant's behavior and the condition of the property. 

  • Have they been responsible with timely rent payments? 

  • Have they maintained the property in good condition? 

These assessments let you decide if the tenant aligns with your long-term property management goals.

Second, the 90-day window offers tenants sufficient time to evaluate their living situation. Your tenants also have life changes, career moves, or educational commitments to consider. Offering a lease renewal three months in advance allows them to weigh their options carefully and decide whether they wish to continue the leasing relationship.

Third, the 90-day time frame also grants you a cushion should the current tenants decide not to renew. This gives you ample time to market the property, screen new potential tenants, and avoid or reduce any vacancy losses.

Lease Renewal Agreement at the top of a document, lease agreement renewal conceptWhy Are Lease Renewals a Smart Idea?

Lease renewals are an excellent way to maximize your return on investment (ROI). Keeping a reliable tenant for more than one lease term eliminates the costs associated with vacant periods between tenant turnovers. 

Additionally, by renewing a lease, you save money you would otherwise spend on advertising and marketing the property to attract new tenants.

Finally, a lease renewal often presents an opportunity for a reasonable rent increase, which can lead to more rental income for property owners. However, the updated rent price should be aligned with current market rates and adequately communicated to the tenants.

How Does the Lease Agreement Renewal Process Work?

Initiating a lease renewal involves a series of steps to ensure a smooth transaction for both parties. 

About 90 days before the lease ends for a tenant in your rental property, it's time to review the lease agreement and make any updates based on changing laws or specific property requirements. Once you have updated the lease, the next step is to send a lease renewal letter to the tenants.

This letter should express gratitude towards the tenants for being responsible residents, provide details about any rent increases or changes to the lease agreement, and encourage them to renew within the next 30 to 60 days.

If the tenants are interested in renewing, send them the new lease agreement well in advance. This allows ample time for them to review, ask questions, and make an informed decision about whether to proceed with the lease agreement renewal.

Do I Have to Renew a Lease?

While lease renewals offer numerous benefits, they are not mandatory. 

If you're eager to part ways with troublesome tenants, the end of an existing lease is a perfect opportunity to do so without resorting to eviction procedures. Around 90 days before the lease concludes, send a letter informing them that you are not offering a renewal and reminding them of the lease end date.

Furthermore, you might decide not to renew a lease if you plan to renovate the property or put it up for sale. However, remember that not renewing means you must act quickly to find a new tenant, particularly if you don't intend to sell the property or once renovations are complete.

Never Miss a Renewal with Online Management Tools

Especially if you own multiple rental properties, staying organized is key to long-term success. For property owners who juggle multiple responsibilities — from property maintenance to financial oversight — the lease renewal process can sometimes be overwhelming. 

Thankfully, technology has brought about a paradigm shift in how we manage renewals, making it easier and more efficient than ever. Specifically, online portals and digital management systems offer a plethora of features designed to streamline the lease renewal process.

At the core of these digital tools is the ability to set automated reminders. With a high-quality online management system, you no longer have to keep mental tabs or manually mark calendars for upcoming renewals. 

These platforms are designed to notify you at least 90 days in advance that a lease is up for renewal, ensuring you never miss that critical timeframe for initiating the process. By doing so, these reminders serve as a fail-safe mechanism, aiding you in staying organized and proactive.

Moreover, online management tools often feature analytics that track tenant behavior, rent payment history, and other key metrics, providing you with all the data you need to make informed renewal decisions.

Online portals also facilitate direct and transparent communication between landlords and tenants. Automated emails or in-app notifications about renewals can be sent directly to tenants, giving them ample time to consider their options and ask questions.

Happy couple signs a lease for renewal, Baltimore property management services conceptImprove Your Lease Renewal Success With a Baltimore Property Manager

Improving tenant retention starts with effective property management. If you're uncertain about how to initiate the lease renewal process or decide on a new rent amount, consider consulting with a property manager. 

At RW BW Metro, we specialize in excellent resident management, property maintenance, and building strong relationships with tenants to help Baltimore property owners enhance their lease renewals. Reach out to us to learn how we can assist you in streamlining the lease renewal process, maintaining your property, building long-lasting tenant relationships, and improving your returns.

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