ESSENTIAL TIPS FOR NEW LANDLORDS

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A smooth-running rental property can prove a massive boost for your portfolio. The benefits of such an enterprise transcends mere monthly cash flow and equity accumulation, it also lays the foundation for a secured future in the business. It lays the groundwork for what will become in many ways the difference between success and failure in the enterprise. Now, as much as you would want to key into these immense benefits that lay in wait, reaching those heights is not always a cake walk. A good number of landlords are faced with challenges and pitfalls in the quest to bring financial success and self-satisfaction into their property management. It is, however, neither an improbable task nor an impossible one. There is more to [amazon_textlink asin=’1495388743′ text=’becoming a successful landlord ‘ template=’ProductLink’ store=’Faithmirror-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’323862c5-d17e-11e7-97c8-0bbe0f0854b3′]than simply getting a tenant to rent and waiting for the checks to roll in. It is pertinent to note at this juncture that it will do you a lot of good to consider being a landlord as belonging in the same wavelength as [amazon_textlink asin=’0385348541′ text=’running a business.’ template=’ProductLink’ store=’Faithmirror-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’6452ed07-d17e-11e7-8fda-8f840ed75912′] Yes, you are essentially running a business and it will do you a whole lot of good to treat it as such.  You should assume a proactive stature and not a reactive one.  A great many landlords fail at this first hurdle; taking things as they come instead of putting in place firm systems and standard procedures to deal with problems will eventually spell doom. You don’t want to be caught off guard, you don’t want to find yourself in an impossible situation that will knock you off your perch. If you can ride through the storm of the first few leases and emerge unscathed, you should be set up for a meteoric rise and a blistering career. As a newbie in the business, here are essential tips for new landlords, that may come in handy towards giving you that success you crave as a property owner.

  • Keep All Your Paperwork: In other words, document everything. Being a rental property owner entails trying your hand at new tasks and inevitably making some errors. New situations will arise and even though no one expects a newbie to everything right, how you respond to being put in unfamiliar territory will do you a world of good in the long run. The trick lies in keeping mistakes to a minimum and not stepping in the same hole twice. And one of the best ways to achieve this is to put every detail of everything you do paper for the sake of documentation. You don’t remember much about something you read off a book until you are actively involved in it. A few scribblings on a notepad on how you found a potential tenant, what their concerns about the property were or what other rental properties were available in the area as at that time can come in handy at some point. A flurry of issues and scenarios can also pop up during every lease. But you’ve got the upper hand. By documenting everything, you are in a better stead to deal with circumstances as they arise.
  • Give The Property A Makeover: Appearances are everything in the property business. Nobody walks around wearing infrared goggles that can penetrate your property’s exterior and provide a view of the interior. This is why you should think about ways that will give your property a facelift. You don’t necessarily have to conduct a full scale rehab, you just need to focus on the major items and the usual suspects. A freshly-painted wall, an updated flooring or roofing or plumbing and a clean cut lawn can go a long way towards swaying the interest of prospective tenants in your direction. And what’s more, it also reduces the likelihood of having lease issues down the line. You can also slap a few dollars on the asking price without fear of an overprice. By plugging all these loopholes before renting out the property, you can shift your focus to running the property instead of answering wanton hitch calls.
  • Get Good Tenants: A good number of landlords have fallen out time and again with bad tenants. As a new landlord, don’t get over-excited at the prospect of your property garnering interest and just accept any rental offer. You should know a thing or two about who you are renting to. There is no substitute for due diligence. If you are only concerned with the cash care very little for the identity of your client, you’ll fall back down to earth sooner rather than later. You should take time to search out the tenant that will be ideal for the available property. All it takes is a bad squabble with a bad tenant and your property may never recover. Get prospective tenants to fill out an application form which will contain all their important details and following up on this information should be your homework. Speak with their former landlords and their employers, make sure everything checks out before renting out. You can ever run a credit check if it is not too much to ask. All this is just to ensure you are not dealing with a roughneck who will default on rent payment time and again and probably vandalize your property when things go south. Even though it is true that you can only know so much about your tenant, due diligence is your best bet towards ensuring that you are not found wanting.
  • Lease Agreement and Expectations: Once you are done with finding the ideal tenant for your lease, it is your duty to walk them through all the contractual terms stated in the less agreement. In the event of a disagreement, the lease is the one document that can save you a lot of trouble. And this document doesn’t really come at a cost, there are a number of solid leases you can get online for free. But that’s not taking anything from the saying that you get what you pay for. So having your attorney draw up robust one is not a big ask. By default, we all like to think nothing can go wrong until it does. You and your property are not just protected by the lease, the success of your entire business is hinged on it. You need to make your tenants familiar with the lease and expectations. Let them know your reservations on such issues as smoking, parking, noise or pets. They should be made aware of the blow-backs from any infractions. Those few sit-downs with your prospective tenants can give them an idea of what’s permitted and what’s not in your property and if they want to go through with the lease agreement.
  • Have a Team on Standby: You won’t always be able to keep track of all the problems that may arise with running your property. You won’t always be able to have a handle on all things. This is why every new landlord needs to put in place a network of handymen in the event of any expected issue. Many landlords get into trouble for not putting in place measures to handle the inevitable. It is essential you have a good team at your disposal. You never know when you’ll need to reach out to a plumber, electrician or a locksmith. It will be easier to swoop in and get things fixed in the nick of time if you have an efficient team on standby. It is in fact more cost effective compared to being charged out of your budget by maintenance companies who will have no qualms ripping you off.

There are times when owning a rental property can seem like a lot of work but, with these essential tips for new landlords, you are well-equipped for the bumpy ride.

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