Guest or Tenant ???
Ahhh the guest who is visiting, but is always there visiting month after month. Nice try but a property management company should protect its owner, and an owner should protect themselves. Sometimes as property managers, we have to draw the line, especially on behalf of our owners. Some of you might think because the rent is being covered it is ok to have a permanent guest. It really just comes down to damages and who is liable. It is always good to have all the tenants on the lease, as you will have more than 1 person to pursue unpaid rent and damages
First of all, make sure to screen all your tenants thoroughly to ensure they have the income to cover the lease or rent. This should be qualifying them for 2 to 3 times the rent, making sure they don’t have excessive amounts of debt, or anything that would prohibit them from paying the rent. Criminal screening, and most importantly creditworthiness is vital. All property management companies in Corona and the inland empire should be performing thorough screenings.
A long term guest/tenant can add to the wear and tear of the property, exceed occupancy limits and potentially cause damage for which they will not be liable. This can cause friction and issues between you and your actual tenant as to who is going to pay for any damages caused. What if they are already deep in debt and can’t cover the damages caused? Who else is liable to pay? If a guest is paying any rent he/she is a tenant and should be held liable for any damages and missed rent, especially if the situation results in eviction.
Here are some items to review to see if they are a guest or a tenant.
- A college student who comes home from school and goes back after summer
- Girlfriend or boyfriend who stays a couple of days
- Parents and relatives who come and go
- Any nanny or help who works there in the day and or night, and goes home. Even if they occasionally stay over, they are a guest
- Has a closet full of clothes and toiletries and stays regular
- Someone with a key to the property
- Someone who has moved in furniture, and a bed
- A friend who is between homes and stays on the couch
- Parents who can’t take care of themselves, and get care by staying there
- Live in Help
- Someone who receives mail at the address and has a car parked outside
Do you need to make sure all guests are on a lease? Of course not. Do you have to panic? Of course not. It is just recommended in the event damages occur or you need to evict the tenant that you are protected as best as possible to recover money for rent and damages.
It is just a good rule of thumb to ensure you are protected for a property manager or owner.
If you have any questions about property management in Corona, Eastvale, Temecula, and all of the Inland Empire in CA, just give us a call 951-520-0058