Renting to millennials is such a hot topic these days. You often hear and see a lot of information online about renting to Millennials, who are increasingly choosing to rent over buy, but do you know what to do when it comes to elderly tenants? Elderly individuals often choose to rent instead of own because it’s easier, but there are some things that landlords need to know.
?3 Ways to Make Suitable Living for Elderly Tenants in Your Rentals
Elderly tenants can be a great setup for most landlords. Renting to these tenants tend to provide income security for the landlords, because the elderly receives consistent income through pensions and/or social security (therefore they rarely miss payments), are less likely to conduct illegal activity on your property, and generally live in the same place for long periods of time. But if you’ve never rented to elderly tenants before, you’ll want to carefully think about a few important issues, including the following:
1. Fair consideration
Avoid unintentional discrimination against people based on age. That means you can’t choose a 30-year-old renter over a 75-year-old renter just because the former applicant appears healthier. Elderly tenants must be given fair consideration when all other factors are equal. You don’t have to favor elderly tenants in every situation, but you can’t punish them for their age either.
2. Be conscious that there may be disabilities and mobility issues.
Elderly tenants with disabilities—physical or mental—are also a protected class. You can’t ask them about their issues or make decisions based on apparent disabilities. It is possible that you may have to make reasonable accommodations (at your expense) for tenants who have disabilities. This includes small things like allowing for service pets, installing grip rails in the shower, or building a ramp for wheelchair access. You aren’t, however, required to make structural changes to the property. One thing you really want to be careful about is avoiding injuries on the premises of your property. By including certain features, you can provide protection against things like slips and falls. Little details/adjustments go a far way; and should a legal issue ever arise, you can show that you made every effort to accommodate your tenants.
One way to ensure your tenant safety is making sure the property is secure. In fact, this goes for every property, regardless of tenant age. Some aspects to be aware of include outdoor lighting, good door locks, window locks, fire escapes (in multi-story apartments), renter’s insurance, and more.
Making their lives easier will also make your life as a landlord easier. Some little things you could do such as, if you typically have tenants drop off rent checks at your office, but know that your tenant doesn’t drive much, come by and pick it up for them. Small gestures like this can go a long way towards keeping tenants happy. When it all comes down to it, elderly tenants are a protected class and you need to do everything you can to ensure you’re treating them fairly and giving them proper living conditions that help them remain safe and secure.
I hope the tips in this article will get you moving in the right direction. As always, try to gather feedback from tenants at the end of their lease so that you can see what you’re doing well and what needs to be improved. This will help you improve all tenant relationships in the future.
http://www.claudiawrightrealestate.com/communities/To find some rental properties within the Greater Toronto Area, please visit As always, “leave everyone better than you’ve found them.”