The act of keeping the area in front of your rental litter-free is like a basic forward roll in landlord gymnastics. It’s fundamental, right? So why then is the task so often neglected?


First let me spell out what I mean by “your front.” I’m talking about the area directly in front of your property AND at least one property on either side. Yes, I’m arguing your front extends beyond your property line. Think of it as your “front line”; the minimum area you need to police to make your wealth-building efforts effective.


Frequent street-keeping speeds the change that increases your profits.

All too often, landlords drop their guards and maintain weak fronts that allow disorder to creep in. Possibly because they hope their tenants or gardeners will take care of litter issues. Or maybe it’s because their lease agreements make yard maintenance the tenant’s responsibility. But what ever the case, if you’re reading this, you know your front should look better.


For a little inspiration, let’s examine 5 benefits of maintaining a clean front. You’ll profit by:


1.  Activating the Law of Reciprocity – This law states that you must give first, then the recipient feels obliged to return the favor. This is especially important in lower end rentals. A landlord needs the help of their neighbors to stabilize the area or to address stubborn problems. Picking up in front of someone else’s place helps you build a reservoir of goodwill that you can eventually draw from. Goodwill is good for business.


2.  Restoring Order and Making Your Block Safer – Blight, especially lingering blight, encourages petty crime. Crooks do their business in areas where nobody cares and nobody is looking. Trash free areas indicate someone is watching and someone cares. Reducing petty crime reduces the likelihood of more serious crimes, and that’s good for business.


3.  Quickening Lease Ups – When faced with a vacancy, you want to find a replacement tenant a soon as possible. You don’t want someone canceling their appointment for a showing because they changed their mind after seeing your neighborhood. Litter and blight make honorable people feel uncomfortable. So, if you want to quickly attract honorable tenants, then help create a culture that doesn’t tolerate litter.


4. Improving Tenant Retention – Your tenants are affected by blight and litter. It’ subconsciously affects their mood and opinion of the owner (even if they are the main litter-bugs themselves). Showing a clean streetscape helps meet their customer appreciation needs.


5.  Improving the Quality of Your Tenants Profile Over Time – Honorable tenants are attracted to orderly environments. Litter and blight indicate chaos. Over time you’ll notice blight management becomes easier and easier. Like a magnetic field, your efforts will attract people that want orderliness and repel those who don’t.


The simple act of removing blight is like dripping dye into a bucket of water. You won’t detect any change at first, but over time, the water takes on the dye’s color.


So even if you don’t do the work yourself, make sure it gets done. Be a creative investor that solves problems; don’t neglect your front line. You’ve got so much to gain. Go make it happen!