Renting out a property to tenants and managing it as your business sounds like a lot of work. If you’re thinking about going down this road, you might be worried about how much time and effort it will take. But, if you’ll be able to make enough money from managing your rental property to make it worth your while, then the benefits will far outweigh any challenges.
If you don’t have the time or inclination to manage a rental property, thats when to use a property management company. But, if you want to get your hands dirty with some hands-on work and enjoy being in charge of something as important as a home— read on to find out how you can manage your own rental property.
Decide What You Want To Achieve
Before you do anything else, it’s important to decide exactly what you want to achieve from managing your rental property. Are you looking to make a profit from renting out a few properties? Do you hope to make a steady income from renting out a property long-term? Or do you just want to cover the mortgage payments each month so you don’t have to worry about it?
Once you’ve decided what you want to achieve, you can then think about the best way to achieve it. For example, if you’re simply looking to cover your mortgage payments each month, you’ll probably need to find long-term tenants who can stay put for a few years.
Assess the Property
Before you start looking for tenants, you need to assess your property and decide what needs to be done to make it a good rental property. You’ll want to make sure there are no major problems, like mold, or faulty wiring with the property, and that it’s in a good location.
You should conduct a tenant screening process to make sure you only rent your property to reliable, good people. Make sure you also have a good rental agreement so both you and your tenant are protected.
Hiring a Property Manager
If you don’t have the time or inclination to manage your rental property yourself, you could hire a professional property manager to do it for you. You can hire property managers to manage single properties or entire portfolios of rental properties, depending on their experience level.
Regardless of the extent of their experience, you should always do a thorough interview and reference check to make sure they are trustworthy and reliable. If possible, try to find a property management company with a thorough online presence and a good online reputation with reviews from past clients.
Manage the Rental Yourself
If you decide that managing your rental property yourself is the best option, you should plan to spend some time and effort on the property. However, it should be a manageable amount of work, and you should be able to scale it back or end it at any time if you no longer want to be hands-on with your rental property.
There are a few different ways to approach managing your rental property, and you can switch between them and find the right balance for you.
You can be completely hands-on and be in charge of every little detail of your rental property. Alternatively, you can assign each element of managing the property to a different person.
For example, you might assign one person to deal with the tenants, another to deal with the upkeep, and a third person to deal with the repairs and maintenance.
There are many different ways to manage a rental property, but the key is to find a way that works for you and your circumstances.
Finding the Right Tenant
When looking for tenants to rent your property, it’s important to find the right person for the job. Every tenant is different and will have their own expectations of the property, the terms of the rental, and the landlord. Therefore, you’ll want to find a tenant who wants to live at your rental property and is willing to pay your asking price.
While you might be tempted to choose the first tenant who applies, you’ll want to be as picky as possible when choosing the right tenant. Here are a few ways to find the right tenant for your rental property.
- Put an ad on a rental site: If you’re looking to rent out one property, you might want to post an ad on a rental site like Craigslist to find tenants quickly. However, if you have multiple properties you’re looking to rent out, you’ll probably get better results with a real estate site specializing in short-term rentals such as FlipKey or Outdoorsy.
These sites allow you to post your rental listing and have people apply directly to you. This means you can carefully screen and select tenants without going through a third party. –
- Ask real-estate agents for tenants: If you don’t want to deal with tenants directly, you could talk to a real estate agent about finding tenants for your rental property. They’ll be able to screen tenants for you and recommend them based on their experience finding tenants for properties like yours. –
- Ask friends and family: You might want to ask friends and family to recommend suitable tenants for your rental property. This is a great way to find tenants who you know you can trust, and it will save you the hassle of advertising your property and dealing with dozens of different prospective tenants.
Managing Repairs and Upkeep
If you’ve hired a property manager, they’ll probably be responsible for most of the maintenance and upkeep of the property. However, if you’ve decided to manage your rental property yourself, you’ll need to be on top of these things to ensure you have a healthy, well-kept property.
Depending on the type of property you have and the condition it’s in, the upkeep and maintenance will vary. Here are a few ways to keep on top of the maintenance and upkeep of your rental property.
- Inspect the property regularly: Make sure you inspect the property regularly to catch any problems before they become too serious. This will also help you spot small problems before they become big ones that cost a lot of money to fix.
- Document any problems: Make sure you document any problems with the property, both big and small, so you can keep track of them and know what needs to be fixed.
- Deal with problems as soon as possible: If you find a problem with your rental property, deal with it as soon as possible, so it doesn’t get any worse.
- Get help from friends and family: If you’re unsure how to fix a problem or don’t have the time or expertise to deal with it, ask friends and family if they can help. You can also hire a handyman or handywoman to fix problems for you.
Whether you hire a property manager or manage your rental property, staying on top of maintenance and upkeep is important. If you ignore problems with the property, they could get out of control and become much more expensive to fix.
If you maintain your rental property properly, you can ensure it remains in good condition and is safe to live in, which will help you find tenants more easily and keep them happy once they’re living there.