When approached with careful planning and preparation, being a landlord can lead to money in your pocket. Without this essential framework in place, you could experience many headaches and financial woes. It’s important to make sure you start off on the right foot, so here are three things that can help you stay the course and enjoy the long term benefits of financial and personal success.
Be Financially Stable
Before you decide to become a landlord, or if you’re currently a landlord considering adding additional properties, make sure your personal finances are in order and current. Yes, your goal is to make money, but remember making money isn’t always guaranteed, and being a landlord can end up costing you money in the long run. You’ll need funds readily available for essentials like taxes, property management, required safety measures, appliance repairs or replacements, and the inevitable unexpected. To properly cover a rental property along with your own residence is no small endeavor, so proceed with caution.
Make Background Checks a Requirement
Finding a great tenant is every landlord’s hope, but it can also be tricky. This is where professional screening services are a must. Think of background checks as an investment into not only your rental property but for your peace of mind. Seeing the overall picture of major items, like a prospective tenant’s work history and financial situation, is imperative in your decision making as a landlord. Being familiar with other issues is equally as important. Also, by knowing more about the applicant, you can use your discretion as to if they would be a good fit for your property and its community. Bottom line? Collecting the most information you can right from the start can help to avoid issues down the road.
Know Your Property
Before making your property available for rent, make sure you know it like the back of your hand. Understanding basic home maintenance is important as well. Sticking to a property maintenance schedule is imperative, and will hopefully help avoid those middle-of-the-night phone calls from tenants letting you know the furnace isn’t working, or the kitchen plumbing has sprung a leak. If you are already stretched thin with your personal availability, consider contracting with a property management company to keep your property running in the best condition possible.
Being a landlord can be very rewarding. With proper planning, you will be well on your way.