Being a landlord can be accidental or planned. It is an accident when you moved out to a new house and decided to rent the old one. Or your career or family took you to a different location and you had to rent the place. On the other hand, maybe you are a seasoned investor and born to be the landlord. You have carefully planned your future and achieved it by owning multiple properties. What ever the case may be, you need to steer clear of these biggest mistakes we have seen landlord commit. I have listed the most common problems below.
1. Proper background checks: The first thing that you need to keep in mind is that the quality of tenants that you bring it determines your success as a landlord. And how to do make sure you have the right tenant? You do proper background checks.
You should have a strict criteria of how to screen and vet your tenants. At SPJ Managements, our Property Management Service experience has shown us that the ideal tenant should have at least three time or more household income compared to the rent. They should have no evictions in the past 2 years. Clean criminal background check and a sound employment history or steady income. We make sure this happens by conducting clear background checks. If you don’t you are setting yourself up for failure.
2. Not accurately documenting the move in & move out property condition : Anytime a tenant move in or moves out, the condition should be accurately documented. At SPJ Managements, we use a combination of videos, photos and other methods to document the condition of the property before move in and after move out. We share the report with the tenants and get their signature. Same things with landlords. This makes sure that we are all on the same page when it comes to accessing the damages to the property. You can also get a signed sheet from the tenant about any damages to the property at move it. We usually give them 72 Hrs to come up with any issues that they have found at time of move in.
3. Not explaining Lease Conditions to Tenants : Face it – no one like to read through 30 pages of legal paperwork. Especially when they are about to get the keys to their new home. So take the time to explain to the tenant all the details set forward in the lease agreement. Go over the highlights with them.
· When to Pay Rent and what options they have · What to do if you can’t pay your rent in full on the day it is due · How to request a service call or report maintenance issues · How quickly tenants will get their deposit back after moving · How often the property manager or landlord will be inspecting the property · How the tenant is expected to return the property at the end of the lease terms
4. Renting to family & friends, or even friends of friends: The classic mistake! You have a friend or family member who needs the property and thinks it will be perfect for them. When you are renting to your friends, it is easy to look over your policies and guidelines that you have been following until today. Background checks don’t matter because you know them well – No No No. Do not bend your policies – You never know a friend or family member all that well. And when they do not pay the rent, the situation becomes personal. It get nasty from there. We recommend not renting to friends and family.
Bottom line is the mistakes as a landlord will cost you more money that hiring a professional property manager to get the job done for you. You can avoid all the above mistake and much more legal and bigger issues with the right Property Manager in place.
At SPJ Managements, we offer full-service Property Management Services to long terms residential landlords. We are limited to serving single family, townhomes, condo and multi-unit properties up to 4 units. We have an in house team of resources ready to start Marketing your Property, Complete timely Service calls and Stay on top of all Paperwork or you.
Fill out the form to get more information about our management services by calling +1(667)802-0003 or filling out the Property management Request Form.