Becoming a Landlord: A Step by Step Guide

Over 10 million people in the United States earn an income from rental properties. Managing a rental property is a fantastic and passive way to supplement your income. If you have an empty property or the capital to invest in one then why wouldn’t you be thinking about becoming a landlord? 

It’s not as simple as buying a property and filling it with the first tenants that you can find, though. Check out this guide on how to become a landlord so that you can make smart decisions and a good income. 

Buy an Investment Rental Property

The first step in your landlord career is a property investment. If you’re looking for a new property you should seek out one that will have a high return on investment. 

A ‘Fixer-up’ property isn’t a good idea as a rental property as it’ll take a long time to get it into adequate shape. Try to find a property close to your home, in a neighborhood that will be appealing to renters. 

Protect Yourself With Insurance

This is a vital step in the landlord guide that you should not take lightly. Landlord insurance will protect you from any unforeseen, and likely costly, events. As a first-time landlord, you should discuss with your insurance agency exactly the type of policy that you’ll need. 

Remember, your landlord insurance doesn’t cover tenants’ belongings. It only pertains to your property and the costs associated with the property. 

Get the Property Ready for Renting

Rental properties have to be ready to move in and livable. Regardless of whether you’re renting the property unfurnished or furnished, there are some important elements you need to ensure before tenants move in. 

Do a thorough inspection of the entire property, identifying and fixing any issues. It’s also in your interest to make any necessary upgrades — especially to the kitchen and the bathroom. Make sure the property is clean and up to code. 

Then, you can start marketing the property yourself or through a real-estate agency.

Screen All Tenants 

Screening tenants is vital — especially for first-time landlords lacking experience to ‘trust your gut.’ You want to ensure that you are dealing with reliable tenants who will pay rent on time and not cause any damages. 

Ask for proof of income and references, and take the time to run credit and background checks. Taking the time to screen tenants will save you a lot of stress and money in the future. 

Maintain the Property

Now that you have a great property and you’ve found trustworthy and reliable tenants your responsibility is to maintain the property. You’ll need to address any repairs and issues that crop up pertaining to the property. Managing and maintaining the property is the bulk of your responsibilities as a landlord. 

You may find that you need the assistance of a property manager, especially if you have more than one rental property. This is well worth the cost if you don’t have time for adequate management yourself. 

Becoming a Landlord in a Few Crucial Steps

There aren’t many steps to becoming a landlord but each of them is very important. You need to ensure you invest in the right property, protect yourself with insurance, and always screen prospective tenants. Are you ready to get started on this new adventure?

Now that you’ve made the decision to become a landlord you’re going to need as much information as possible on all things real estate. We have you covered with informative and interesting content — keep exploring for more articles!