Who should be responsible for the lawn care at your Dallas Fort Worth rental property?
There’s no single answer to this question. It depends, really, on your property and your tenants. It also depends on how particular you are regarding the exterior of your investment. There are considerations to be made as well if your property is in an HOA that has its own regulations.
Multi-family Properties and Lawn Care in Dallas Fort Worth & North Texas
When renting out a multi-family property, lawn care should remain your responsibility as the landlord. With multiple tenants, you cannot expect one of them or all of them to take care of the lawn for the building.
Hire a landscaping service or a lawn team to mow, weed, and take care of basic yard needs. You can pay for this service by passing the cost onto your tenants and including it in the rental amount. Providing lawn services will be something you can use in your marketing when you’re renting out a duplex or leasing units in a small building; tenants will be relieved that they don’t have to worry about keeping up with the lawn.
Dallas Fort Worth & North Texas Single-Family Properties and Lawn Care
In a single-family home, you have more options in terms of how you’ll handle lawn care. You might have tenants who are obsessive about grass and more than willing to take care of the lawn. Or, you may find yourself renting to tenants who are renting rather than buying specifically to avoid household chores such as mowing and weeding.
Here’s what to consider when it comes to lawn care and your single-family rental home:
- Are the tenants interested in the lawn?
Some tenants are more than willing to mow the lawn and take care of the outside space as if it was a home they owned. Maybe they love mowing or they are excited about planting an herb garden or some pretty flowers. Asking tenants to take care of the lawn is more reasonable if they express an interest in it.
This is something to discuss before the lease is signed. If tenants express interest in taking over the lawn care and landscaping and you aren’t terribly invested in how the outside of your home looks, you might want to try it. If they fall behind on the mowing or things just don’t look good, you can always suggest something different.
- How particular are you about your rental property’s lawn?
Maybe you’re one of those owners who is very particular about how your properties look. You like short, green grass or you have complex landscaping systems involving topiaries that need constant attention. If this sounds like you, leaving the lawn care to your tenants is a terrible idea.
If you have high standards for how the home looks from the outside, keep this responsibility as yours.
Property owners who are local and love to spend time on lawns and landscaping might want to take care of the lawn themselves. Make sure your tenants understand this, though, and are okay with it. Not every tenant will want their landlord to come by every week to do the lawn. They might feel like they have no privacy.
- Is your HOA a stickler for lawn care regulations?
More and more Dallas Fort Worth rental homes are showing up in HOA communities. Check the bylaws for what’s permitted when it comes to grass and landscaping. You don’t want to collect violations because your tenants aren’t paying attention to the lawn the way they should.
Hiring a Lawn Service for Dallas Fort Worth & North Texas Rentals
Enlisting professional help is an excellent way to keep the lawn at your rental property well-maintained without any extra effort from you or your tenants.
You’ll have to decide how to pay for it.
If you entirely see lawn care as your responsibility, you can pay for it yourself. This will make it easy for you to market your rental property as low-maintenance. You can tell tenants that lawn care and landscaping are included.
Or, you can have tenants cover the costs of lawn care. Simply raise your rent to cover the cost of the lawn service.
Another option is to tell tenants that they’re required to maintain the lawn and if they want, they can hire a service to do it. You can recommend a landscaping company or you can leave them to hire their own. This gives them a little flexibility around who to hire, and it also keeps their base rent from rising too high.
Lawn Care and Lease Agreement Language
However you decide to manage the lawn care at your property, make sure you include the lawn and garden maintenance in your lease agreement. Be specific about how it will be handled and who is responsible for overseeing its care.
It’s critical that tenants understand how you want this handled. You don’t want your tenants to assume it’s not their responsibility, and you also don’t want your tenants to be out there with a lawn mower if you’re already paying for a professional service.
Professional Dallas Fort Worth & North Texas property management can help you decide how to handle lawn care and what to say in your lease agreement to ensure this responsibility is clear and covered. It really does depend a lot on your rental property and what the exterior looks like. You’ll handle a small courtyard differently than you’ll handle a half-acre.
We can take a look at the property you’re renting out and make a recommendation based on what type of home it is, where it’s located, and how much work is likely necessary to keep the lawn in good shape. We also have relationships in place with landscaping companies and lawn care vendors, and we’re happy to share those with you.
Please contact us at OmniKey Realty with any questions about this or any other topic. We work with rental property owners in Dallas, Fort Worth, and other North Texas communities like Sherman, Denison, and Greenville.