Six Factors to Consider Before Renting Out Your Home

By Joe Amatangelo, President, Long & Foster Property Management.

May 201708

Six Factors to Consider Before Renting Out Your Home

By Joe Amatangelo, President, Long & Foster Property Management.

Whether you’re moving due to relocation or upgrading to a bigger house, renting your current property could be a great investment. Before renting out your home, there are several factors to consider, including deciding if you want to be a hands-on landlord or hire a management company.

Do you have the time to take on the following responsibilities that come with renting a home?

  1. Prepare your home for rental. A well-maintained property attracts quality tenants, leases in a shorter time and generally increases the rent. Qualified tenants tend to shop homes that are in good condition and offer the best value for their rent dollars.Before renting out your home, you will need to complete repairs, renovations, cleaning or any other necessary maintenance work to make your property move-in ready. You can choose to hire vendors or do the work yourself.
  2. Market your property. Setting the right price for your rental will generate more interest and appeal to more potential tenants. To do so, you will need to know the competitive rental rates in your local area. After you have decided how much rent to charge, your rental property will need to be advertised through multiple channels – websites, social media, multiple listing services (MLS) and more. Maximum exposure will lead you to a well-qualified tenant.
  3. Find a qualified tenant. The screening process is vital in finding the right tenant for your rental property. All interested tenants should complete a rental application, which includes credit, criminal and reference checks. Verifying a potential tenant’s rental history is an important step of the screening process – it will show their past performance, confirming whether they will pay rent on time and keep your property in good condition.
  4. Protect your rights with a lease. A clear and concise lease agreement is very important. Be sure to include specifics like whether pets are allowed, what occurs if a repair is needed and how much you require for a security deposit. After all parties sign the lease and your new tenants move in, you will want to enforce the lease, ensuring they are in compliance with the agreed upon terms.
  5. Get insurance. Landlord insurance will protect your home and your income, covering unexpected costs that arise from damage caused by fire, lightning strikes, wind, hail, explosions, smoke and more. Your insurance agent can help you find the right coverage for you and your rental investment. You should also encourage your tenants to get renters’ insurance, which will cover their personal property.
  6. Manage ongoing landlord responsibilities. Throughout the lease, you’ll have other responsibilities, including collecting rent, maintaining the property and managing your tenant relationship.

If you are thinking about renting out your home, but aren’t sure you want to do it on your own, feel free to reach out to our team at Long & Foster Property Management or call us at 1-855-869-1107.

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