If you are just starting to rent a property, these few bits of advice can help you take ownership and management of your property a little easier.
Here are a few tips that every new landlord should know.
You may need a License
Depending on the country and city in which your property is located, you may need to apply for a rental license before legal rental. This system is designed to ensure that all properties are maintained at high standards.
Although it was launched in 2006, it was not adopted by all local authorities. Therefore, it is worth checking to see if you need it.
Treat your Rental Property as a Business
You will find lots of advice for new landlords, and one of the most important is that you handle your rental business like it is an actual business.
Of course, managing a rented property is not your main task, but it is still a business and an additional source of income. So, it is important to be professional towards tenants, keep finances intact and carry out thorough tenant assessments before tenants move in.
In the US, you must comply with federal, state, and local laws to do good business. Property investments and rentals are often regulated, so take time to investigate and understand all federal and state laws before renting out. Ensure that your business complies with all legal requirements to maintain a positive reputation and avoid potential legal issues.
Tenant Reference Checks
As a landlord, you must strictly check new tenants to see if they are reliable, not troublesome, and that they can duly pay rents without fuss. This check includes finding out about their creditworthiness, employer reviews and previous landlord references.
Additionally, landlords in the UK must check that their tenants have the right to live legally in the UK. Failure to exercise the right to rent under the Immigration Act 2014 may result in a fine or even imprisonment, so it is important that background checks are carried out thoroughly.
Join a Landlord’s Association
Prospective landlords may want to invest in a membership to a landlord association – especially if you think you want to turn it into a career.
As a member of the property owners’ association, you build your professional reputation and have access to a wealth of knowledge and resources to make investments.
Gas Safety Checks
As a landlord, you are responsible for ensuring the security of your property for your tenants, and as part of this responsibility, you are required to check all gas appliances every year, which in the UK should be done by a technician registered with Gas Safe. Then you must issue the tenant a gas safety certificate within 28 days of the annual inspection.
In addition, fire alarms should be installed on each floor of the property from the beginning of the contract, and carbon monoxide alarms must be in every room where solid fuels are used. Both alarms should be checked on the first day of the contract.
You may also be required to provide the tenant with an energy certificate.
If you rent a new apartment without making sure that your property meets these standards, you may be fined or even stripped of your right to manage your own property for a specified period if you are guilty of multiple violations of home safety and rental laws.
This often means the management will be transferred to your community who will collect the rent during the period of your suspension. However, you will still be responsible for the mortgage and any costs such as repairs.
Find a Reputable Property Agent
Finally, try to engage the services of a reliable property agent while you learn the ropes of rental property management.
It’s no child’s play going through the entire process finding a tenant, renting a property and picking up the rent without any hiccups, especially for a new landlord. It can get tricky and gruelling sometimes.
However, with an honest and experienced property agent, you get a range of key services that make the process quicker and easier, from a simple advertisement of a rented property to a complete hands-off management package.
Many traditional property agents offer rental services, but online rental agencies offer not only a comprehensive service portfolio but also convenient platforms for wider advertisement and rental management.