Being a landlord can be a personally and financially rewarding investment. However, there are a lot of things to prepare for before you take up this new job. A well-planned strategy and complete dedication is the key to a successful renting business. In the absence of any prior experience, there are higher chances of making certain mistakes that can cost you in the long run. It is better to hire a property management company to ensure a better handling of the different aspects related to home renting.
Given below are some tips that can help first time landlords rent out their homes efficiently:
Know Your Responsibilities
Before you even plan to rent your home, you must understand and be willing to bear the responsibilities that come along. Right from advertizing your property to the potential tenants to ensuring that they stay comfortably throughout the lease duration, you need to take care of multiple aspects. You should also stay updated with the landlord-tenant laws and Fair Housing Act that prohibits you from reject any tenant on the basis of religion, race, color, nationality, disability or gender. All the laws should be followed to avoid any legal complications later on.
Another important step is to buy a home insurance policy that covers your rental property. It will help you to protect yourself against any financial liabilities in case the home gets damaged due to fire, water pipe leak, vandalism, hailstorm etc. The cost of insurance may depend upon the property’s location, type and coverage included. You can also require your tenants to buy renters insurance before moving in.
Price It Right
Setting the right price for your rental home will help to increase its demand in the market. Potential tenants may browse through the online MLS listings and compare a number of available properties to shortlist the suitable ones. If you ask for a too high or low rent, it may be perceived as a red flag and draw away the tenants. To avoid this, you should conduct an in-depth analysis of the market trends and rent of similar properties. This will help you to determine the right price for your home.
Decide The Amenities You Want To Include
Prepare a list of all the amenities that you will be providing to the tenants. These may include furniture, electrical appliances, HVAC system etc. Also decide if the monthly rent includes the maintenance and utility charges or they have to be borne by the tenants. Amenities such as Wi-Fi, cable, security alarms, well-maintained lawn etc. can help to increase the rentability of your property.
Stage Your Home
Improve the visual appearance of your rental home before inviting the potential tenants for a visit. Thoroughly clean the driveways, mow the lawn, replace rusty door knobs and steam clean the carpets. Inspect the home to see if anything needs to be repaired, such as a leaky faucets or faulty electrical fittings. Remove unnecessary furniture and include only those appliances that you intend to provide in the rental home.
Screen Tenants Properly
Renting your home to the right people is important to ensure a consistent income and keep your property well-maintained. Therefore, you should conduct proper tenant screening to evaluate of the applicant is suitable for your search criterion. Check his income, employment history, criminal background, past rental record etc. You can also get in touch with the tenant’s previous landlord to know about his general conduct and punctuality in rent payments.
Pay Attention To The Lease Agreement
The lease agreement should clearly mention all the terms and conditions to be followed by the tenant. Important details such as rent amount, security deposit, tenancy duration, pet policy, occupancy limits, maintenance liabilities etc. should be included in the contract. Also mention the due date for rent and the circumstances in which eviction procedures can be initiated. Make sure that the lease agreement is understood and duly signed by both the parties.
We, at Lone Star Realty & Property Management, Inc., can help to rent your home in Killeen, TX. For more information, you can call us at (254) 699 – 7003 or visit our office at 1020 W Jasper Drive, Killeen, TX 76542.