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10 Essentials When Onboarding New Tenants

10 Essentials When Onboarding New Tenants

10 Essentials When Onboarding New Tenants

Onboarding new tenants is a critical phase in the rental process, setting the tone for a transparent and positive landlord-tenant relationship. It involves more than just handing over the keys; it's about ensuring a smooth transition, clear communication, and setting up expectations right from the start. Here are ten essentials every landlord or property manager should consider to streamline the onboarding process and foster a healthy relationship with their tenants.

1. Signing the Lease Agreement

A comprehensive lease agreement is the foundation of the rental relationship. Ensure it covers all terms and conditions, rights, and responsibilities in detail. Both parties should understand and agree to the lease terms before signing.

2. Collecting the Security Deposit

Collecting a security deposit is standard practice to cover any potential damages caused by the tenant. Make sure to comply with state laws regarding the maximum amount, holding methods, and return policies.

3. Providing Keys

Upon the lease signing, provide the tenant with keys to the property. This also includes mailbox keys, garage remotes, or access codes to communal areas if applicable.

4. Sharing Property Rules and Regulations

Clearly communicate any specific rules or regulations associated with the property or community, such as noise restrictions, pet policies, and trash disposal procedures.

5. Conducting a Property Walkthrough

Do a detailed walkthrough of the property with the tenant, noting the condition of the property upon move-in. This can help avoid disputes over security deposits when the tenant moves out.

6. Setting Up Utilities

Ensure tenants know how to transfer utilities into their name or understand which utilities are included in the rent. Providing contact information for local service providers can be a helpful touch.

7. Introducing Emergency Contact Information

Provide tenants with a list of emergency contact information, including how to reach you (or a property manager) in case of an emergency, as well as contacts for local emergency services.

8. Explaining Maintenance Request Procedures

Clarify how tenants should report maintenance issues or request repairs, including the process for emergency vs. non-emergency requests to ensure timely responses.

9. Offering Community Resources

Help tenants acclimate to their new environment by providing information about local amenities, public transportation, schools, and other community resources.

10. Scheduling the First Property Inspection

Set a date for the first property inspection within a few months of move-in. This shows tenants that you are proactive about property maintenance and care about their living conditions.


Onboarding new tenants effectively requires attention to detail, clear communication, and a structured process. By covering these ten essentials, you can ensure a smooth transition for your tenants, laying the groundwork for a positive and productive relationship throughout their tenancy. Remember, a happy tenant is a long-term tenant, and it all starts with a thorough and thoughtful onboarding experience.

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Posted by Stewart McKee

Stewart has been a software developer for 20 years, and in the last few years has been moving into property rental. A point came when the number of properties needed some sort of management solution, so rather than heading for a limited spreadsheet he built a site to manage his properties. This proved to be so useful that he decided to form it into the site you see today and make a product out of it so that others can benefit from the ease of use.