So perhaps you’ve come into possession of a property. Maybe you’re moving out or thinking of switching homes, but you’re not sure what to do with your old home. The most obvious option would be to just sell it, especially if there’s still a mortgage on it.
You might even be able to make a small profit if you’ve had the home for a while and property prices have risen in your area. But have you considered the option of renting it out?
Renting your property comes with a unique set of challenges, but it’s also quite a profitable real estate investment and even if you have a mortgage on the property, you might be able to continue paying it off or at least get some money to help you pay it off by renting it out.
However, it’s important to let your mortgage lender know because buy-to-let mortgages are different to standard ones. If you’ve ever thought about renting your property, take a look at some of these pointers before you make a decision.
If you rent out a property you’re considered a landlord. You have a lot of responsibilities when it comes to your property, such as making sure it’s free from health and safety hazards, carrying out the relevant gas safety checks and also checking if your tenants are legally allowed to rent properties in your country.
You’ll also need to book health and safety inspections to confirm that your property is safe to live in, and any problems that the inspector finds has to be fixed before you’re allowed to rent it out. This can include dodgy structural damage, uneven stairs or cracks in the walls.
If your tenants report a repair or a broken appliance that’s part of your property, then it’s your responsibility to make sure the relevant works are carried out and paid for. You’re responsible for most, if not all the repairs and it will come out of your own pocket, so make sure the tenants you rent the property to are capable of keeping it in good condition if you don’t want to be refurbishing it once their contract expires.
There are rental property management services you can hire to hold onto and advertise your property to potential clients. They’ll usually charge a fixed fee or a percentage of what you make, but it makes sense to leave it to the experts to manage your property if you’re not too sure how to do it.
You can use the internet to reach the masses if you want to advertise your property on your own. You can use directories such as craigslist or websites dedicated to properties. Many websites will offer you a free listing opportunity so you don’t need to pay for your first time. You could also use social media and connect with local property rental services or speak directly to potential tenants.
A more traditional option is to advertise in printed media such as magazines, publications and of course, posting adverts in local store windows that allow for it.