How to Create and Enforce a Guest Policy Within Your Condo Rental
As a rental condo owner, you are responsible for the people who live within your building. It is important to screen potential tenants carefully and craft an agreement that clearly defines the residents in the space. While operating your condominium, you may find that certain tenants have guests that you think are temporary visitors. But what do you do when they become an ongoing occupant within the property?
Tenant and Guest Definition
A tenant is the person or persons that you have signed a contract with to pay rent within your rental property. This individual is responsible for paying rent on time, caring for the space and staying in compliance with the laws. A guest is an individual who visits on occasion, possibly sleeping over from time to time. The guest is not on the lease and is not required to pay rent or be obligated to terms of the lease agreement.
In some cases, a guest will take up residency within the home. Chicago property management companies see it all the time when long-term guests move in and the property owner has not given the individual permission to live there.
So, how do you tell when a guest has become a resident? There are a few signs you can look for. First, is the individual now receiving mail at the address? Is the individual regularly spending the night onsite? You can determine this by using security camera footage from the parking lot. If you have the parking lot a part of the lease agreement, then you will have plate numbers and vehicles registered to use the space. This will help you to narrow down who is staying the night on a continual basis.
Another indication of a residence is if the guest has moved in furniture, has personal belongings or pets in the residence. This indicates that they are living in the space.
Writing a Guest Policy
To better protect yourself from guests who turn into tenants without your permission, it is best to have a tenant guest policy in the lease agreement. This will include the maximum number of residents in the space and what type of guests are allowed on site. Point out in the lease that no one is allowed to occupy the space as a tenant without your permission, including subletting the space or using services like Airbnb.
Note how many nights a guest is allowed to stay on-site within a specific time period as well as how many guests are allowed at one time in the apartment or dwelling. Also list how you will handle issues with guests, such as evictions for those who are in violation of the tenant lease agreement.
Handling this type of situation can be tough. A Chicago property management company can easily set up your tenant lease agreement and go over with potential tenants the guest policy. Property managers can also complete regular checks to ensure that tenants are following protocols and no one new is living in the space without permission.
The guest issue is something to be aware of as a property owner so you can ensure your investment is better protected for potential problems in the future.