Congratulations on becoming a newly minted landlord! Welcome to the exciting and tricky world of renting property to total strangers (minus the occasional relative or business associate).
Did we say “tricky”? Yes, we did.
As a landlord, there are many laws to follow. A small mountain of finances to handle. And the to-do list is never-ending. But if you manage your rental properties like a well-run business, being a landlord has its rewards.
Whether you rent residential dwellings or commercial properties, these tips and tricks are helpful for any landlord who’s just getting started.
1. Know the law. Follow the law.
Study up on local, state and federal laws, regulations and rules. Plenty of online resources, such as Landlordology
, can help you understand various aspects of renting your property.
2. Document everything.
You’ll need to spend a lot of time gathering important documents and creating forms such as rental applications, leases, disclosures, etc. Do not cut corners on documentation. Most paperwork can be processed online but keep copies on a hard drive you regularly back up. Also, make extra copies of any paper files and store them in a safe place.
3. Rent to tenants cautiously.
A property is only as good as its tenants. Choosing tenants wisely may prevent headaches down the road. Evicting bad tenants takes time and money, which will cut into your profits.
4. Make rent a priority.
As a landlord, your only source of revenue is rent. And your tenants need to pay it consistently and on time for you to succeed. Find ways to make it easy for tenants to pay rent, such as online payment options. Sometimes it’s okay to give leniency to a quality tenant, but make sure they tell you their situation ahead of time. If needed, charge a late payment fee.
5. Have the right insurance coverage.
You need insurance
to protect you from financial loss if your business or property gets damaged. If you’re a residential landlord, you may need a rental dwelling insurance policy that includes protection for property and liability but not for contents. As a commercial property owner, consider coverages such as lessors risk insurance or commercial general liability insurance.
Our Alfa® agents can explain your coverage
options and help you choose the best plan for your rental properties. Contact your local agent
today for a free quote.
All coverages are subject to deductibles and policy limits. This is not an insurance policy. It is intended only to provide a general description of Alfa Insurance® and/or its product lines and services. An actual policy contains the specific details of the coverages, conditions and exclusions.