Rental property can be a great investment. Unfortunately, many people are put off by horror stories of bad tenants and maintenance-heavy properties. Whilst these nightmare scenarios can happen, it’s usually a result of not taking preventative measures. With the right amount of planning and delegating, you can lower the risk of your rental property being a failure. Here are just a few strategies to remove the stress out of being a landlord.
Look for turn key properties
Turnkey real estate is a name given to properties that can be rented out straight away. You don’t have to spend time and money renovating them up to the right standard. Some landlords may enjoy this renovation process (buying ‘as is’ properties and doing them can save you money in some cases). However, if you find this stage a burden and have too many other responsibilities to take care of, it could be worth paying that bit extra for a turnkey property.
Screen your tenants
If you’re afraid of tenants damaging your property or falling behind on rent, why not take the effort to implement a screening process. This could include references from previous landlords and a credit check to ensure that your potential tenants isn’t prone to falling behind on payments. You can also ask for a reference from an employer to check that they’re getting the right amount of income. Finally, you can ask them to set up a guarantor so that if they can’t pay the rent, someone else can step in and it pay it for them. Getting the help of a solicitor could help you to implement all this, as well as helping you to write a solid contract between you and your tenants.
Outsource repair services
Having to repair problems might be okay if you have the time and enjoy DIY. However, for many landlords it can be a huge hassle. It’s worth getting a handyman service on call who can attend any problems immediately. You’ll pay a little extra than were you to do this yourself, but you’ll ensure that the job is done well and in a timely manner, keeping your tenants happy.
Consider hiring a property manager
You could even consider hiring a property manager for your tenants to communicate through. Property managers do require a monthly fee, but can take away the stress of collecting late payments, making repairs and even arranging viewings to find new tenants. Find a property manager that doesn’t pay too highly but who has enough experience to ensure reliability.
Have a maintenance fund
As landlord, it’s your duty to pay for any property maintenance. Whilst you may be able to call handymen in or get a property manager to arrange this, you still have to pay for these repairs. The best way to deal with this is to have a maintenance fund of ideally about a grand. This gives you money to dip into for electric faults, plumbing, decorating and other maintenance without having to go into debt.