Are you planning to rent out your property? You might be looking for some extra income, wanting to clear a debt, or seeing it as a means to hold on to the property until the real estate market improves.
But it’s not that easy – You must ensure the property is well-maintained, well-advertised, features a competitive price, and is in a move-in ready status for tenants.
If you reside in a tourist-friendly or commercial area, renting out your home might not be as difficult – But if that’s not the case, finding the perfect tenant can be difficult.
In any case, here are 7 important tips to prepare your property rentals for the local market.
1. Get Landlord Insurance
First and foremost is having reliable landlord insurance which will shield you, the landlord, from specific things that a regular homeowner’s insurance wouldn’t. These include potential lawsuits, damage to the property caused by the tenant or a third party, and any sort of liability.
Professional insurance providers or a property management firm can help with landlord insurance and answer specific questions.
Also, in certain cases beneficial to the landlord, the tenant can get a renter’s insurance that covers them in case of lost property.
2. Hire an Accountant
You’ll need to hire an accountant because once you begin collecting money by offering a product (your house), you need someone to tactfully track your income and expenses. You must also ensure that you’re abiding by the proper requirements and reporting everything to the government.
You can also consult with a Certified Public Accountant (CPA) before you rent out your property and ask them whether you should be aware of anything to help you get started.
3. Review the Lease Agreement
Hire a professional attorney to review your lease agreement and ensure everything is in order and you’re covered. Ideally, consult an attorney that specifically handles real estate law so that your lease particularly caters to your property.
4. Decide Rent
It is important to settle on a market competitive rent that doesn’t undervalue your home, and also makes it feasible for tenants.
A rule of thumb is to fix your rent at a maximum of 2.5 percent to 3 percent of the total value of your home.
5. Get the Residential Rental Move-in Ready
Tenants always notice minute details, so make sure to take care of them and leave a strong impression. Scan your house and enlist all the areas that require any repair, replacement or any sort of maintenance before a tenant moves in. These might include lights, furniture, carpets, garbage disposal, bathroom fittings, wallpaper, etc.
Survey your house every few days before a tenant moves in. Ensure there isn’t any dust or debris lying around once a tenant visits to survey the property. Also, focus on the landscaping. Make sure the grass is cut and weeds are removed – All this helps you leave a good impression.
Remember: The first impression a tenant makes of your property is extremely important.
6. Market Your Property Effectively
Now that you’re ready to rent out your home, the next step is advertising it on the market. Make a list of the most appealing and marketable aspects that will ‘sell’ your home; commonly marketed features include a washer and dryer, air conditioners, storage room, and garage.
According to experts, certain words and adjectives help residential and commercial rentals get a tenant faster. Make sure to use any or all of these IF they apply to your home:
- stainless steel appliances
- vaulted ceilings
- hardwood floors
Once you’re done, post an ad on reputable real estate websites and in local newspapers.
You can also hire some real estate agents to help you rent out your home; however, these agents ask for commission once they find you a tenant. Moreover, a property management company can handle all the legwork for a reasonable fee generally 8 percent to 10 percent of the monthly rent.
7. Research and Shortlist Potential Tenants
Last but not least, is to shortlist potential tenants. Ask them to fill out an application form that inquires their basic information: name, employer name, salary, any previous landlords, reputable references, etc.
You’ll also need their social security number and signed consent to check credit reports and any history of criminal charges (state and local records) – An accredited agency can also do this as long as you follow the procedures of the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA).
Other important paperwork you’ll require includes:
- move-in documents
- receipts from the tenant when they pay rent
- move-out documents
For any further inquiries regarding renting out your home, or any other property management related queries – Feel free and reach out to Skybridge Property today!
The Skybridge Property Group is a market leading property management firm. To learn how we can help you, call us at 909-610-9780.