The levels of impact that tenants can have on property | How to protect the property


Good morning.

I’m Alixander and welcome to another edition Morning Edition of the Salt Lake City Real Estate Agency’s morning broadcast.

Thank you again for joining me at the KW Salt Lake City Keller Williams offices in Sugarhouse.

We do appreciate you joining us here.

What’s up, Michael? (Fist Bump)

With that said today, we’re going to talk about tenants.

Yesterday, we talked about renting in the rental process. Today, we’re going to talk about the levels of impact that a tenant can have on your property.

Levels of Impact Tenants Can Have on a Property

So with that said, let’s go ahead and talk about the levels of impact. They really range from light, to not so light.

We might even say a huge impact. 

Did they live there?

So the first level of impact that you’re going to run into with a tenant. Either this is the kind of tenant that you are or this is the kind of tenant that you’re going to run into, is did they even live there?

Yeah, there are some tenants out there that when they rent that home, you have to ask yourself, “Did they ever live there? They paid their rent, everything at the home is in pretty good condition. I mean, there’s some neglect from not mowing the lawn or doing any of the outdoor stuff on the outside of the home…”

Ultimately, when you go and check for the walkout inspection, there’s nothing going on. Yeah… That’s kind of an interesting situation because you walk in there, all the carpets are clean, everything’s really clean, everything is all moved out, and you have to ask yourself over and over again, “Did they even live there?”

So that’s the first level.

Common users

The second level of impact is what could be called The Common User.

The Common User treats the property not like it’s their own, like it’s somebody else’s. They’ve scuff it up, they bang it up, and they might even put a hole in the wall, maybe… “and it was totally an accident and…” is what they’ll tell you. When things break, they let you know, it’s not a big deal. They pay their rent. It’s a pretty good situation all around.

You know, when they’re done they’re done and it was a pretty good fit for them.

So that’s kind of the common user and, this is kind of that 80/20 rule, is 80% of the people that you’re going to want to have are Common Users or “Did they even live there”.

Rule Breakers

There’s the next tenant that you’re going to run into, or your this kind of tenant is, what’s called The Rule Breaker.

The Rule Breaker knows all the rules and they seem to break all the rules. I don’t really know why they feel it’s necessary to know all the rules and all, they’re going to do is just break all the rules.

They’re the ones that know they’re not allowed to have pets, and they’re the ones who have pets. They’re the ones who know they’re not supposed to smoke on the property, and they’re the ones who smoke on the property. They do everything, it seems like, that breaks all the rules. They can have a huge impact on your property.

Keep that in mind so that when people are coming to rent your property from you, and if they seem to know all the rules before going in… you might have a rule breaker. 

Home Improvers

The next one is called The Home Improver.

Improvers, they have wonderful intentions and they are very ideal kinds of tenants in that they want to make the property better. But you have to rein in these people in because before you know it that “Hey, can I paint the walls?” turns into:

  • “Hey, can I tear down that wall?”
  • “Hey can install a new bathroom?”
  • “Hey, is it okay if I just change out all the windows to the stained glass ones my grandma gave me from her home back East?”

I mean they mean well, but if you’re not reining them in, they could really really do a lot of damage to your property.

And if you are a home improver, and if that’s something that you’re like…

Well, keep in mind that this is not your stuff and that with permission the landlord might even allow you to make some changes to make this home more of your own. So do yourself a favor talk to the owner. Or if you are the owner to tenants… if Home Improvement is something that’s to happen…

Well, let’s make sure that we guide these projects and understand how they impact both parties moving forward


The last of the the levels of impact is what I call The Destroyer.

The Destroyer is the one tenant that everyone wants to avoid.


And if you are this kind of person, well… no offense, but I’m going to avoid you as well.

These are the kinds of people that:

  • They destroy the carpet
  • They destroy the walls
  • They destroy the grass
  • They destroy everything about this home, or this apartment, or this duplex unit, or whatever…
  • They destroy it
  • And they put holes in the walls, whenever their emotional
  • Their fights… they destroy the peace and quiet of the neighborhood
  • They just destroy everything

And it’s hard to tell who the Destroyer is when you first meet them…

But, there are some ways that you can protect yourself.

How to Protect your self

So let’s go ahead and talk about the ways you can protect yourself, and screen for levels of impact that tenants can have on the property.

Credit, background, employment, past rental verification

First and foremost:

  • Credit
  • Background
  • Employment
  • Past rental verification,

You do those things, and you’re going to learn a lot about the kind of tenant.

And if you are the tenant, be ready and willing to provide credit check, background check, employment & past rental verification. If you’ve been a great tenant, be proud of that. That’s a huge honor and a lot of people are looking to have tenants just like you you can get lower rents. If you have great credit, you can get lower deposits. If you have great employment and great pass rental history people want to take special care of you because they know you’re going to take special care of your home. 

Know what the tenant’s lifestyle is like.

With that said, if you’re the landlord, understand the lifestyle of your tenants now.

I’m not saying that you need to meet every single tenant when you have hundreds of units, that can be impossible; and, also, you hired a property manager. When you did, you hired property manager to screen tenants for you. Just understand what the lifestyle of your tenants are before they move into the property. It can save you a lot of headache.

I mean:

  • if their car is trashed
  • if their clothes are wrecked
  • if they look like their whole life is in shambles… wel…

They’re going to take their shambles and put it in your property.

Just protect yourself from that.

And likewise when you’re a tenant and your life is in shambles…. Don’t try and put those shambles in other people’s places. You’re going to cause more damage doing so.

With that said… 

Periodic property inspections, two to four times a year. 

What other things can we do to protect our property, and how are landlords going to ensure that their property is protected?

Well a good recommendation, if you’re taking one, is do periodic inspections of the property. My recommendation is do to for inspections a year. If you’re going into the unit, looking at the unit, understanding the level of impact that your tenant is having on the property, you’re going to really protect yourself.

And likewise, as a tenant, if you know that your property manager is doing inspections two to four times a year, that means that they care about the maintenance of the property. They care about what kinds of things are happening as you experience their rental. So when they arrive, let them know:

  • “Hey, this hasn’t been fixed or this happened,”
  • “This hasn’t been fixed,”
  • or, “Hey, I really do appreciate you know that you have the lawn done or the things are looking nice around here.”

You know, it’s a good conversation to have on both ends. 


So I think that that really sums it up, kind of the five different levels of impact from light to extreme, and the three really big things that you can do to protect yourself, both from a landlord and as a tenant.

So thank you again for joining me for another wonderful addition to the Salt Lake City Real Estate Agency morning broadcast here at KW Salt Lake City Keller Williams.

And a quick shout out to my friend, Michael Perry, over at the Perry group. Thanks for making my morning. Awesome. Love the fist bump, bro.

Thank you all.

Have a great morning.


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