What landlords need to know to successfully manage a property. From tending to property, choosing the right tenant, a good lease & tracking finances.
Being a first-time landlord is exciting, but it can also be a bit daunting. It’s not as easy as it might look – it’s not all about getting rent each month and calling it a day! There are lots of different elements that go into being a successful landlord. Here are some top tips for new landlords on how to successfully manage a property!
Treat it like a business
Technically, being a landlord is like being an employer – but there are lots of responsibilities and things that a landlord needs to do in order to manage the property successfully. This includes a lot of different things like making sure that the property is in top condition – doing regular checkups, renovating, fixing, and replacing what’s broken. These things are essential in order to keep your tenants happy as well as to fulfill your duties as a good landlord. If you’re unable to do all of these things on your own, there are lots of property management services you can hire. This is extremely useful if you live in a different city, or even a different state from your rented property, so having someone do all the necessary things is essential.
Chose tenants wisely
If it’s your first time renting a property, it’s important to screen your potential tenants well. You don’t want just anyone living at your property, even if it means you’ll get paid for it! Having a good tenant will ensure that you have a stress-free and easy relationship, and that’s what being a landlord is all about. So try to seek out specific traits and look through the history of everyone who is a potential tenant. Some of the green flags are no criminal record, good credit history, no eviction record, and similar. See what they are like and if you deem them a good fit for your property!
Write a good lease
A lease is essentially a contract between the landlord and the tenant, so it’s important that it’s well written. In this contract you’ll disclose a plethora of things, basically, everything important when it comes to the property and handling the property, as well as what can and can’t be done on it. This goes hand in hand with the law, depending on the rules and regulations in each state, this can differ! And if you still can’t find the answers or guidance you seek, then seek out solution for landlords.
It’s okay to be strict
It’s completely fine if you want to be strict with your property, and it’s even better to have this kind of approach. Make sure that you and your potential tenants discuss possible rules before signing the lease, it’s essential that you are both on the same page. If you both have an agreement on something, it’s smart that both of the parties keep it. Late payments? Set a fee for every time you receive rent late. These things might seem over the top, but you want to be treated with respect as a landlord!
Unfortunately, you never know what can happen, regardless of whether it’s an accident, a natural disaster, or anything really, things can go wrong. It’s important to be there for your tenants and return their calls and emails as soon as you can, if anything were to happen you need to hear it first. This is also important for renovating and fixing things, you want to be available to hear your tenant’s questions and concerns and lend them a hand. And it’s just good to have an open and friendly relationship with your tenants as they are more likely to be mindful of your property that way and amenable during future lease renewals.
Keep track of finances
It’s a good idea to keep track of finances, and not just rent, but also all the invisible fees, bills, and maintenance expenses that might come your way. Your main goal is to manage the property accordingly, always making a profit – but you never know what could happen, depending on insurance and other things how much you’ll be able to cover, and how much you’ll have to pay out of pocket. What if your tenants ruin the property and bail completely? What if you need to renovate the whole place? These are all viable scenarios so it’s important to be aware of the financial side of things.
At the end of the day, there is truly not a universal guide on how to run a property, as each property is different. It might seem like a lot of work, but it’s all worth it in the end. Being a landlord can be extremely beneficial and also something fun to do. It’s just important to keep in mind that the landlord and the tenant need to be on the same page, always!