Becoming a landlord is a big responsibility. Not only are you entrusting your biggest asset with strangers, but you’re responsible for keeping your property safe and healthy for those strangers.
The following tips will ensure that you have a great experience as a landlord. Here are the things first-time landlords need to know:
Rights and Responsibilities
As a landlord, you have the right to get the rent paid in full and on time. But you also have a number of legal obligations to your tenants as well. These obligations include keeping your property safe, free from any hazards, and giving adequate notice before you conduct any inspections.
It’s also important that you check everything in the home is both safe and in working order.
Managing the property
When it comes to managing your property, you have two options: manage it yourself, or hire a property manager or property management company to do it for you. If you manage the property yourself, it’ll be up to you to collect rent from your tenants, and you’ll need to regularly inspect it as well. If you choose to outsource this, you’ll usually pay a monthly fee or percentage of the rent, but these things will all be taken care of for you.
This should be one of the first things you do. Landlord insurance for properties will cover you in the event of a natural disaster, theft, or damage by your tenants. But not all landlord insurance policies are created equal. It’s important to check out an insurance comparison website so you can compare the cost of different policies and see what is and isn’t included.
Before you sign on the dotted line with your insurance company make sure it covers the right number of tenants, number of rooms in your property, and the type of property you’re actually renting out. You’ll also need to ensure you understand what’s covered, and consider whether you need buildings and contents insurance. Before you get tenants in your property, check with your insurance company that you won’t be doing any activities that could invalidate your insurance (such as allowing subletting).
Choose the right tenants
Landlords can avoid most potential problems with tenants by asking for references or speaking to their past landlords. Be sure to think carefully about the type of tenants you’re hoping to attract, their income, and their life stages.