Tips For Renting Out Your Home
Renting your home is a common and profitable way to hold on to your home when you are not currently living in it as the primary resident. There may be several reasons why you will like to rent your home. Some homeowners decide to do this as they are waiting to sell when their home value increases, others may hold on to the property for retirement and other owners may decide to do this because they have been transferred to another place of work and needs to move but doesn’t want to sell the house. Whatever your reason for renting, you must know that serious planning is needed before giving up your home for rent and not to think about your responsibility as a landlord. These tips will guide you to know how to protect your property, deal with any future issues and keep your tenants happy.
Conduct your research
Before you put up your home for rent, you have to research the market. You have to know the rate at which similar properties are being rented so that you don’t set your rent too high or too low. Know the type of tenant you want to live in your property. Will it be suitable for students, business professionals or young families? In conducting your research, you might want to look at the laws and be familiar with them. You have rights and responsibilities as a landlord and tenants also have right and you must know them all. You might find yourself in court if you violate them.
Know your responsibility
Renting out your home basically means that you are transitioning to a landlord and you should know your responsibility as a landlord. Being a landlord is a 24/7 job and you’ll need to stay on top of many issues. You will receive calls from your tenant day and night with issues that need your attention, you have to stay on top of maintenance and repairs, and monitor your tenant’s housekeeping skills to prevent deterioration of the building. The safety of your tenant is paramount and you must do everything in your power as a landlord to keep them safe.
Prepare your property
Before you put up your home for rent, you have to make sure that it is in perfect condition to be occupied. Prepare your home for occupancy by cleaning your home thoroughly. If it is a newly built house, make sure all construction items are taken off the premises and all finishing completed. If a previous tenant left the place dirty, it is best you have the place deep cleaned and the cost of cleaning deducted from the security deposit. As a landlord, Fix all safety and health hazards like the electrical, pests and moulds. Doors and windows should all open and close without any issues. Be sure all woodworks and appliances are in a perfect state and any outstanding utility bills settled before occupancy. You will need to decide whether to rent the house as furnished or unfurnished. If it is being rented out as furnished, all fittings and furniture must be in place as promised and any personal belongings and other items that are not fit to be there should be removed. Remember that there is increased availability of rental homes so tenants are choosy when renting.
Put your property on the market
Once your property is ready you have to list your property on the market and start looking for tenants. There are many ways you can communicate your property’s availability for rent. You can do that yourself, put up a signboard, hire a real estate agent or you can use listing sites like meqasa for potential tenants to find your property. Include relevant descriptions when listing your property such as rent price, location of the property, number of rooms, features that come with the property and others.
Screen your tenant
Once your property is ready, start looking for a tenant. You can do that yourself or hire a real estate agent to do this for you. Your tenant can makes or break your deal therefore you’ve got to do the work upfront to ensure a great tenant. After placing your advert and have gotten a potential tenant, run a background check, make sure they have a stable income and other relevant checks. Sometimes it is tempting to rent to someone you like but that might end up not being the right decision. Run the necessary checks to know your home will be in the hands of someone you can depend on to pay rent on time and also take care of your property very well. You don’t want your property in the hands of tenants who will end up not paying rents on time, trash your home and cause a bunch of damage but you want great tenants who will take care of your property and when they finally move out, it will even look better than when they moved in. This is the care of your home, your someday retirement and your future wealth.
Set clear expectations for tenant
As a rule for every business, you must set clear expectations for your clients. This is the same with you and your tenants. Let your tenant know clearly beforehand whether you have any preconditions. If you don’t set clear expectations for what you want, you will not get the result you need. From the onset, layout clear expectation for what your business relationship is going to be like. Setting expectations may mean using a solid lease agreement and onboarding the tenant correctly. Your lease document is a legally defensible contract and you should lay out all lawful tenancy and property rules in it. It may include but not limited to whether or not you allow pets in the residence, a clear and unambiguous statement about the occupancy and lease terms, specifying the time period the property can be rented. Spell out the rent amount to be paid each month, how much you will charge as a penalty for late payment, how much deposit is needed, what the expectations are for the rent and if subletting is allowed. The amount of security deposit should be communicated as well. The issue of responsibility, home upkeep and maintenance should be addressed and let your tenant know what an emergency is and what it’s not, when and how they can contact you. Taking time to set expectations upfront is going to save you years of trouble down the road.
As a landlord, you have to prepare and set aside money for that rainy day. You don’t want to run into a situation when you don’t have enough money to solve urgent matters when they are brought to your attention. Things break all the time and a few hundred will go down the drain but because you expect things like that to happen, you set aside some reserves. It is just the cost of doing business.
Outsource what you can’t do
Turning your home into a rental property may seem like an easy task but there is some aspect of the rental that you may want to outsource or leave to a property manager. You may be tempted to do everything yourself. You may want to manage the property, find tenants, take phone calls, fix stuff, and collect rent. You might be able to do them but there are some things you will just hate doing and there are some you don’t have the expertise to deal with them. The bottom line, you will end up not doing a good job and will not bring energy into your life. You might want to outsource the things you don’t like doing and the things you are not good at handling to a professional. Yes, you will have to pay them something but it is worth it and your role as a landlord will become so much easier. You will be happy as a landlord and your tenants will be as well.
Every landlord would love to have a good tenant who can rent for a longer period and take care of the property as well. At the same time, every tenant would also love to have a landlord with whom they can have a healthy relationship with. Whether you are a new landlord or you’ve been a landlord for some time, renting out your property is not as simple as it may seem but being a landlord doesn’t have to feel like a burden. You can comfortably and successfully rent out your apartment or home to good tenants and have a great landlord-tenant relationship. You can own a profitable rental property and it might just end up being a perfect foundation for future investments. Follow these tips and have a great landlord-tenant experience.