Property Matters: Three Things No Potential Landlord Should Forget
Ask any experienced landlord, and they’ll tell you, if you think being a landlord is easy, you’re dead wrong! There are a lot of people who imagine themselves sitting back and relaxing as the money from their property rolls in. Of course, in a perfect world, that’s exactly what would happen. Unfortunately, we don’t live in a perfect world; we live in the real world. And in the real world, being a landlord take a lot of time, commitment, and plain old hard work. Renting out a property is undoubtedly a fantastic way to increase your income without having to quit your day job, but that doesn’t mean you won’t need to get pretty heavily involved. The main reason that so many landlords fail early on is that they massively underestimate just how much work they have to put in to make sure that their venture is a success. This applies to whatever type of landlord you decide to be. Whether you’re a private landlord renting to families or students, or whether you’re renting out a commercial property. The worst thing that you can do is to expect things to be simple and easy. In fact, some of the most difficulties that landlords face is a lack of preparation. Here are just a few simple tips that will make renting out your property as simple and easy as possible.
Be picky with your tenants
For a lot of landlords, the idea of an empty property can be just about the scariest thing of all. An empty property is, essentially, a money pit. The idea of paying for a property that isn’t bringing in any money goes against everything that a landlord should want. That can make it pretty tempting to try and fill the property as fast as possible. The sooner you have tenants, the sooner your property can start bringing in profit, right? Well, hold on. While that might seem like a great idea at first glance, doing this can sometimes cause more problems than it solves. The most important thing is to make sure that you’re getting the right tenants. A bad tenant can make life a complete nightmare for a landlord. You want to find someone who’s going to take care of the property and treat it with the right amount of respect. The best way to do this is to screen your tenants carefully. Don’t rely purely on your agent to choose your tenants for you. Make sure that you meet them and speak to them yourself before making any agreements. Take this opportunity to ask your prospective tenants any questions that you have. When deciding what to ask your tenants, think about the things that are most important to you. Is it important that your tenants share your personal values? Are you looking for long or short term tenants? How much maintenance are you willing to do? As tempting as it can be to fill the property as quickly as you can, make sure you take you take your time. It’s better to hold out for the perfect tenant rather than letting just anyone into your property.
Make sure you have access
Regardless of how great your tenant is, you will inevitably be called upon to deal with problems with the property. Whether it’s structural, electrical or any other issue, there are things that will be your responsibility to deal with. When you need to maintain the property, it’s absolutely crucial that you’re able to access it. Both you and your tenants probably lead busy lives, and you can’t always guarantee that your schedules will match up. There’s nothing more frustrating than wanting to get work done on a property and not being able to get into it because your tenants have all the keys. Make sure that you always have a set of keys so that you can access the property at any time for whatever important maintenance needs doing. This might seem like an incredibly obvious point, but it’s surprising how often such a small detail can be overlooked. If you’re renting out a commercial property that uses a key fob, then make sure you seek out a service that provides key fob duplication so that you’re never left without access to your property.
Pick the right property
In the same way that the wrong tenants can make your life more difficult than it needs to be, the wrong property can add a huge amount of extra work that you really won’t want to have to deal with. When looking for a property, don’t just imagine that whatever’s cheapest will make for the best investment in the long run. If a property seems like an absolute bargain, then make sure, before you put down any money, to ask yourself this question. Why is it so cheap? There are plenty of factors that can affect the price of a property. The location of the property has a big impact. It won’t matter if your property is beautiful, if it’s in an area with high rates of crime or other problems like that, it’s not going to attract tenants. Similarly, you might find a property in a great area that seems far cheaper than it should be. Act cautiously and make sure to check for any structural problems or damage. Things like damp might not seem like a particularly big deal when you first purchase the property, but it can become a major issue down the line. You might have paid less for the property at the start, but structural problems will often lead you to have to pay much more over time in crucial maintenance. It’s a much better idea to be more selective and make a slightly larger initial investment rather than grabbing a bargain that will turn into a money pit over the years.