Tips for new landlords
Being a landlord is a challenging task with many factors to consider. Acquiring a rental property can be a great investment, however, it can also be a complete disaster if your knowledge of the process is inadequate.
As a landlord, you are required to make a number of big decisions, such as choosing your tenant. Whether you’ve been in the business for a long time or you’re new to the industry, it’s easy to make mistakes when renting out your property.
Here are six top tips for first-time landlords:
- Make your rental property attractive
The rental market is extremely competitive so it’s essential that your home, flat or townhouse makes a great first impression. Make sure your property is clean inside and out. Use high-quality images to market your rental properties in order to boost the interest from potential renters.
- Be transparent with rent and make it a priority
Let tenants know exactly what their monthly rental costs will be by making the lease agreement transparent. Set the bar early and be aggressive in pursuing rent when it is overdue – remember rent is your source of income. Determining a rental amount can be tricky due to a number of factors. Gauge the correct figure by investigating the prices of properties of a similar size and condition in your area.
- Screen tenants properly
Screening potential tenants is important. Run a credit check to make sure they have no bad credit scores. Keep all records of your screening procedures for future references. Don’t make the mistake of renting your property to someone with a low credit score.
- Understand the landlord-tenant laws
Make sure to get everything in writing where both parties sign with witnesses. Know the fair housing laws and regulations. Be sure to educate yourself regarding applicable laws as you don’t want to violate them. Landlord-tenant law covers matters such as maintenance, notice, security deposits and the eviction process. Be clear if there are no pets allowed.
- Be prepared for problems
Rental properties require a lot of time, attention and involvement which adds to the difficulty of being a landlord. Make sure to have the finances set aside to deal with any unexpected repairs, accidental property damage, unpaid rent, maintenance and vacancies.
- Make use of self storage
Landlords should not underestimate the convenience, accessibility and affordability of a reliable self storage facility. Self storage is the perfect solution if a tenant prefers to bring their own furniture. Self storage facilities are safe and secure and units are individually alarmed and monitored by CCTV.