Renting out your own home or an investment property may help you build wealth. However it doesn’t come without its challenges. Here are some tips to make sure you’ve got you bases covered if you’re new to the rental and landlord market.
Private landlord or rental agent
Before renting out your property you’ll need to decide if you would like to use an agent to help you and deal with your tenants and property maintenance, or if you’d like to manage the property yourself.
An agent will collect a fee, however they can help with rental property management such as:
Finding and screening tenants
Arranging property maintenance and repairs
Setting, collecting and adjusting rent
Dealing with evictions or tenant issues
Advertising the property and facilitating home opens
Inspecting the property and documentation
Preparing paperwork for rental agreements and terminations of lease
The agent may perform any or all of these tasks according to their agreement with you, or you may decide to save on the agent or property manager fees and take the time and effort to directly deal with the tenants yourself.
Once you decide who will manage the rental property, you can focus on ensuring the property is ready and appealing for tenants. Make sure to have any major renovations done prior to a tenant moving in. This will save you the hassle of obtaining access whilst the tenant is living there, and can also add value and interest to the property.
It’s also wise to do a thorough once-over of the property and perform any maintenance or repair work. This will ensure the home is safe and ready for people to move into. Don’t forget to check inside and outside, including checking for pests.
Perform a thorough clean of the property. How you present the property to your potential tenants can show them how you’d like it kept in the long term and how they should leave it on moving out.
Make any necessary updates to appliances, change shower curtains, clean carpets, take care of gardening, and add easy-care plants. A few small tweaks can make all the difference to the presentation of the property, what type of tenant you will attract, and how much rent you can potentially charge for it.
When it comes to furniture, you’ll also need to decide if you are going to rent out a fully-furnished, partially-furnished or unfurnished property. Your rent fee should also reflect this.
It’s important that before you rent out your property you obtain landlords insurance. This will help protect you should something go wrong such as damage to the property, rental payment failure by the tenant or a loss of rental income. You can choose the level of cover you obtain, and with markets sometimes lacking stability, it’s important to make sure you protect your investment. If you are renting out a property with furniture or appliances, you will also need to obtain landlords contents insurance to protect these assets too.