Have you decided to rent your house but feel lost or overwhelmed as you explore your options? In this video, we're going to discuss seven tips to get you started in being a landlord. We’ll look at everything from sprucing up your property to hiring professional help so you can successfully rent out your home.
Refresh Your Property
The first tip for becoming a landlord is to refresh the look and feel of your property by sprucing up your house. You will be investing in your asset and be able to get top dollar for rent.
All you have to do is put on a fresh coat of neutral paint, repair any lingering items, and check things like door hinges, lightbulbs, and faucets. If you take the time to address the needed repairs, you will save yourself the hassle of getting calls from renters to repair things after they move in.
Market To The Right Audience
The second tip is to market your house to the right audience. Listing a house for rent is a lot like listing a house for sale. You want to make sure that you have good photos; we use professional photos for our rental listings to make them stand out.
For the description, you want to paint the picture of your new tenants living in the house. Does it have a great space for entertaining or a huge backyard? Showcase all of these items in your description—but be very very careful here. As a landlord, you are expected to know and follow fair housing laws. You cannot use any wording that could be considered discriminatory, so when in doubt, just leave it out.
Screen Prospective Tenants
The third tip is to screen prospective tenants thoroughly. There are many programs available for you to use to screen tenants, so make sure that you use one.
You'll want to make sure that you have information upfront about a prospective tenant's rental history, monthly income, and employment status. This is important so you know that they can cover their obligation to pay rent, which allows you to pay your mortgage.
Welcome Them Warmly
Tip number four is to give your tenants a warm welcome. A well-cared-for tenant is a happy tenant, and happy tenants pay rent. They’re also much less of a headache to the homeowner. There are a few things you can do to give your tenant a warm welcome.
For one, make sure the property is clean and the grass is cut. We make sure that the batteries in our smoke alarms and air filters are changed with each new tenant. We want our tenants to know that we care, not only about our properties, but also about their safety and well-being. We also give our tenants a welcome packet filled with important information about the house and our company.
Keep It Maintained
The fifth tip is to keep the house well maintained. This will save you so much time and money in the long run, and we know this one personally. We have had rental homes and rarely have issues out of them. Why? Because we consciously make an effort to care for the investment. This includes yearly HVAC tune-ups and pest inspections.
Our team also performs drive-by inspections of our properties so that we can tell how our homes are being cared for. Once a tenant moves out, we inspect the property and ensure that all deferred maintenance items are taken care of. This includes checking for things like leaks, having the home sprayed for bugs, and taking care of any outside needs. By routinely taking care of these items, we avoid repair requests throughout the tenant's lease.
Respect Their Privacy
The sixth tip is to respect your tenant's privacy. North Carolina has a Covenant of Quiet Enjoyment, meaning the tenant has the right to use the property for its intended purpose. As the homeowner or the management company, we obviously have the right to enter the property if there is an imminent danger to life or property. Otherwise, it's expected that we give the tenants at least 24 hours' notice before entering a property.
Hire A Professional
Finally, tip number seven is to consider hiring a professional for help. Does all of this seem overwhelming? Are you going to try to manage that rental from a distance? That's where we come in. Our team knows how to prepare your house for rent quickly, efficiently, and for the least out-of-pocket costs possible. We know fair housing laws and the ins and outs of the Servicemembers Civil Relief Act. We can keep you out of serious legal trouble.
Additionally, if you’re beginning to think about your upcoming PCS move and you aren't sure about your next steps of placing your property in property management, we're here to help. Give Anchor Real Estate, Property Management a call and we'll take care of all of these things for you.
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