Giving Holiday Gifts To Your Landlord
Recognize A Great Landlord With A Small Gift.
(I am writing this blog post under objection, because we’re generally not self-serving enough to post a guide that might as well read ‘how to give us things.’ But we had a few tenants ask us this year, ‘is it appropriate to give your landlord a Christmas gift?’ So we figured since we had already planned to write a post on giving gifts to your tenants, We’d match it with a similar one about giving to your landlord.)
Landlords are people, too, and they’re people that you generally want to maintain as positive a relationship as possible with. Of course, the most important things you can do to achieve that goal are keep your home clean and pay the rent on time — if you do those two things consistently (along with ‘not be a criminal’), your landlord already loves you.
Business Comes First
Unfortunately, the relationship between you and your landlord will almost always be a transactional one: one of you wants something, and the other is obligated to give it — and that doesn’t change just because one of you gave the other a gift (in either direction!) But if you decide that your landlord is important enough to you to deserve come Holiday consideration, it certainly won’t do any harm to give them a gift that shows you that you appreciate what they do for you.
Gifts Any Landlord Would Love
Being a landlord is an all-consuming activity when you do it right; being a property manager is ten times that. As such, all of the gifts on this list are useful — even the fun ones — to the job. If you know your landlord well enough to know about a specific hobby or passion they have, feel free to cater to that — but these are gifts that absolutely any landlord will love to put to use:
• Home Depot Gift Cards: There isn’t a single landlord anywhere in America that could possibly have a big enough budget at Home Depot (or Lowe’s or whatever you happen to have in your area.) Some people think gift cards are ‘low-thought’ or ‘easy’ gifts, but I can assure you, your landlord won’t see it that way.
• Property Manager/Landlord Swag: CafePress has a surprising amount of landlord swag, some of it tasteless and some quite good. ProTip: Landlords love to show off how much their tenants love them, so a “Best Landlord” or a “Thank God for Landlords” gift will go a long way; not so much a “Slumlord” or an “I Evict, Therefore I Am” item.
• A Glowing Review: Seriously! If you’re the kind of person who doesn’t mind copping to the strictly-business nature of the landlord-tenant relationship, show your landlord you care without spending any money. Instead, log on to Yelp or Angie’s List or their Facebook page and write about your experience as their tenant. Then send them a Merry Christmas email and attach a link to the review. Even if they don’t mention it later, you can rest assured that they’ll be very touched that you took the time to share your positivity and enthusiasm with potential future tenants.
If you’ve found a gift that you think is appropriate for your landlord and you haven’t paid your December rent yet, pack it up and drop it off when you hand over your rent check. If you missed that chance, just drop it by their office and don’t worry about whether or not they’re there to receive it. Either way, chances are pretty good you’ll get a thank-you note along with your January rent receipt.