Managing Your First Rental: Top Tips

Have you been tempted to rent out a house, or dabble in property investment? Maybe you have inherited a house or have the funds to buy a second home, and fancy trying your hand in the rental property market. If becoming a landlord is something that appeals to you, check out our helpful tips to help you manage your first rental.

Make sure your house is clean and safe for tenants

Before you do anything else, make sure your house is at the very minimum clean and safe for tenants. Check the laws and regulations in your city or country as some will have different requirements to others. Ensure that the electrics are safe, that the gas work and any appliances have been checked over by a qualified gas engineer, and that the property is structurally sound. It is also important to make sure it is aesthetically pleasing as well. You are more likely to get good tenants who will keep your property looking good if you have put work into making it look great to start with.

Think about the fee that you want for your property

The next thing that you need to do is to set a fee for your property. Obviously, you need to make sure that this covers any mortgage that you are paying on it, any property management fees if you are using someone to handle that, and any insurance and maintenance fees. Most prospective landlords also want to make a profit! However, it is also important that you set your monthly payments in line with similar properties in the area – too much higher, and no one will be interested.

Decide whether you are going to use a property management company

Being a landlord can either be really easy or really stressful. When nothing needs doing, and you have good tenants, it’s easy, passive income. When you have bad tenants, large gaps in between tenants, or lots of maintenance issues, it can be tough. Making sure that you have all the tools to hand can make it easier for you, but you can use a professional property manager who can deal with it all on your behalf.

Promote the rental vacancy of your home

Once your property is ready to rent out and you have set a competitive but realistic fee, it is time to promote your house and attract tenants. Again, if you are enlisting property management services or letting agency, they may well do this on your behalf, but if not, you need to get the word out that you have a superb property just waiting for the right tenants.

Vet your applicants

If your house is competitively priced and looks great, you will undoubtedly have a long queue of interested people wanting to rent it from you. However, you will want to make sure that they are reliable, will pay the rent on time and not trash your property. A property management agency will undertake this task for you, but you can also find third-party agencies to carry out work and credit checks on prospective tenants.