If you have made the decision to rent out the home you are living in rather than living in it yourself, you have some prep work to do. Not only do you have to get the home itself physically ready to rent, you also need to prepare yourself mentally. Understand that they are going to treat your home differently than they will and make yourself come to terms with that fact. Use some of the tips below to make the whole process much easier and safer for you and your future tenant.
Decide How Involved You Want to Be
You don’t have to deal with tenants at all if you don’t want to. Instead, you can turn your home over to a rental agency or real estate agent who will collect the rent and make timely visits to ensure that the property is being taken care of. This helps avoid any issues with getting personally involved with the tenant or letting your feelings about the house get in the way of how you manage your business.
You may want to check with a local lawyer or building inspector to learn exactly what the rental codes are and what your responsibilities are toward the tenant. Some states require that you furnish appliances while others don’t. The same is true of things like smoke detectors.
You most likely have the best interests of everyone in mind, so it won’t hurt to take a few extra steps. Make sure that the smoke detectors are adequate and in working order. Check the stability of any and all handrails. Install GFI sockets near the sink, tub, and washer.
Neutral tones are fairly common in rentals because they work with just about any kind of décor. Brown carpet is the most common because it hides traffic paths and minor stains better than most other colors do. When it comes to the walls, stay with one neutral color. This will prevent you from having to match paints every time a new tenant moves in.
You may not be trying to offer a palace, but you expect your tenant to be timely with the rent, so give them something worth renting. Make sure everything is in working order and create a schedule for doing things like changing furnace filters. The more you invest in maintaining the home as a reliable landlord, the more likely you are to have tenants who will stay for long periods of time and pay their rent in a timely manner.