It’s just a few days until Christmas. Cookies are in the oven, ornaments are on the tree, and your tenants probably have a few strands of lights strung around their front porch. If you’re anything like me, you’ve got gifts stuffed in the back of your closet awaiting that all-important “Wrapping Day.”

What’s your favorite gift you’ve ever been given? For most of us, it probably had less to do with the gift itself than with the thought behind it, the person who gave it, or how long you’d been waiting for it.

Good tenants are one of the best gifts any landlord can receive. If you’re enjoying a blessing like that this Christmas, don’t keep all the joy to yourself. This is the perfect time of year to show some appreciation to your tenants.

People who feel appreciated and cared about are more likely to be better tenants and stay in your property for longer. In other words, it’s a good investment to spend a little extra on a surprise for your tenants this Christmas. You’ll be more than paid back with property that’s well taken care of!

Let’s take a look at some great ideas for landlord-tenant gift giving.

Gift Cards

This is a classic. If you’ve got college-aged tenants, iTunes may be a good idea, while for families a movie pass or gift card to a nearby kid-friendly restaurant may be a better option. Whatever you chose, make sure it’s practical for your tenants—and something they can get to easily.

Gift Baskets

These can be ordered online, or made yourself. One of my sister’s favorite things to do at Christmas is put together themed baskets for people, such as a hot chocolate basket with holiday mugs, coco, marshmallows, and fuzzy socks. You could also go for a coffee theme, a movie basket with tickets and popcorn, or anything else you can dream up!

Money off Rent

This is a gift your tenants are sure to appreciate. Consider giving them a discount on their rent for the month of December, and encouraging them to do something generous with the extra money. After all, it is the season of giving!

Baked Goods

This is another favorite idea. If you like to back, get those cookie sheets or bread pans out and leave a tin of goodies at your tenant’s door. If you’re more of the store-bought type, find a bakery in town and order something special. This is certain to be one gift anyone will appreciate!

Whatever you decide to give this Christmas, accompany it with a handwritten, personalized card thanking your tenants for a great year. After all, they’ve given you the opportunity to spend more time with your family and maybe even make that dream vacation a reality.

Don’t you think they deserve a little thanks, too?

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