Jun 10, 2015

Renting out your property is a great way to hang on to an investment while earning extra money—but renting property comes with risks. Here are a few tips to help you be successful:

Prepare For Additional Responsibility

Being a landlord means more than collecting a monthly check. You’ll need to find tenants, make repairs, handle landscaping and yard maintenance, and arrange utilities. If you don’t have the time or skills to handle these extra responsibilities, you may need to hire a property manager or a maintenance expert. As a landlord, you’ll be legally responsible to maintain certain living conditions, make sure you can handle the workload.

Place Informative Advertisements

Once you’ve decided to rent out your property, you’ll need to advertise to attract tenants. Research other rental properties in your area and set a competitive price. Many people look for rental properties online and in the classified section of local newspapers. If you don’t include enough information in your advertisement, potential tenants will rule you out before looking at the property. Your advertisement should include:

·         The location of the property.

·         The monthly cost of renting the property.

·         The number of bedrooms and bathrooms.

·         A list of desirable features such as a washer and dryer, granite countertops, or air conditioning.

·         Features of the neighborhood. Is it close to public transit, shopping centers, or elementary schools? Future tenants may want to know.

·         Photos of the rental property if the advertising venue has space for them.

Carefully Screen Potential Tenants

When potential tenants turn in rental applications, screen them carefully. Call listed references as well as previous landlords. Find out if they pay rent on time, if they damaged the property, and if they were respectful neighbors. Check credit reports to make sure they can meet their financial obligations and require a security deposit to protect your assets.

Make Sure Everything Is Insured

It is important to insure your property while it is being rented. You should carry insurance for the grounds and the building itself. It may be wise to choose a policy specifically created for landlords.

You should also require tenants to carry renters insurance. This protects their property inside the building. To learn more about insurance options, visit Best Insurance.

photo credit: Monrovia bungalows via photopin (license)

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