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Tenants, Green Thumbs, and Garden Beds

Raised Garden Bed Growing Tomatoes in Spring Rental BackyardWhen the weather starts to warm up, it can frequently get a tenant’s green thumb itching to start a garden. Although as a Spring landlord, you are commonly more interested in expanding the value of your investment property. A tenant’s want for a garden can at times be at odds with your need to protect your property from changes, however small. Allowing your renters to plant garden beds in the yard of your rental house comes with a wealth of both pros and cons. Before you give your tenant permission to start digging, here are several significant issues to look into.

Local Ordinances

It may stun you to perceive that a lot of towns have laws that prohibit residential property owners from growing a garden, at least in the front yard. Others may have restrictions on what type of plants can be grown or how much water any one property resident can use. Therefore, make certain to examine your local ordinances before you start agreeing to any garden requests.

Potential Advantages

Having a garden in the backyard may increase the value of your property in many cases. It rests upon your target renter demographic and where your property is located. If your tenant aspires to a garden very badly, allowing them to do so could make them happy, which will possibly urge them to stay in your rental longer. A happy tenant typically results in better long-term cash flows, so it may be worth the risk to permit them to plant their garden.

Costs of Restoration

But on the other hand, it’s essential to take into consideration the downsides of allowing your tenant to put garden beds in the yard. As an example, if your current tenant leaves, you may be stuck with the task of restoring the yard to its original condition. This will definitely cover costs that may or may not be fully covered by their security deposit, which simply means you’ll be paying out of pocket to get it done completely.

Neglect by Future Tenants

Another prospective burden to approving garden beds is what happens when your current tenant moves out. If you consider keeping the garden beds, there is no assurance that your next tenant will have the skills or yearning to keep them tidy and weed-free. The added trouble of yard maintenance could induce overall neglect of the property’s landscaping, which would jeopardize your property values and create headaches for you.

Consider Compromise

Even as you’ve already settled to refuse your tenant’s request for garden beds, you could choose to endow them with a compromise instead. For instance, maybe you could allow some new flower beds along a walkway or under a window instead of larger garden beds. Or, think about allowing some large containers for their garden project, as raised planters or tubs. These can be laid on a patio or in a discreet location not to damage existing landscaping but moreover still permit your tenant the delight of growing things.

When it comes to tenant garden beds, it’s imperative to look at all aspects of the question in preparation for making your decision. Each property and situation is different, so ultimately, only you can decide.


Of course, you don’t need to make difficult decisions about your investment property all on your own. At Real Property Management Heritage, we have experienced Spring property managers who team up with rental property investors like you to help handle tenant requests and protect your property’s value. Contact us today to learn more.

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