Being a landlord is not always as easy as it may at first seem. Many people find themselves as landlords of properties, without really being aware of everything that the role entails. The real estate industry involves numerous complex issues relating to finances, law, individual tenants, and property maintenance, among other important topics.
Landlords need to follow a set of practices and procedures to ensure they can avoid the many pitfalls of leasing houses in Atlanta Georgia. Read on for some quick guidelines on how to best approach the duties of a landlord.
Set the Right Tone
It is always good to be friendly with your tenants to ensure a great working relationship. But this does not mean your tenants should view you as a friend, as this could affect your relationship. Some tenants may attempt to exploit this familiarity and take liberties that are in breach of your contract. This could potentially result in a difficult legal situation that any landlord would prefer to avoid. Landlords must maintain a professional and objective relationship with their tenants that will ensure the agreement is closely adhered to.
Screen Your Tenants
All landlords want to make sure the tenants of their properties are responsible, law-abiding citizens. It is in your interest to find tenants that will:
- Pay their rent on time
- Follow all of the terms of your contract
- Treat your property with respect
- Not engage in any illegal activity
For this reason, it is a good idea to create a tenant screening process that will ensure your tenants meet your requirements. Through screening, you can check on the criminal history and rental background of your potential tenants. You can do this by asking for a certificate showing a clean police record and personal or professional references. You can also ask your tenants for salary and credit verification. If you want to make sure that your screening process is appropriately thorough, it's best to leave that job to the best property management Atlanta GA.
Set the Right Price
In order to find the rental price that is right for your houses in Atlanta Georgia, it is necessary to do some research into the value of property in your area. There are many factors that come into play, such as the size and condition of the property. The price will also be affected by the exact location and neighborhood that your property is in.
Landlords can look at the prices that their competitors are setting to get a better idea of the price range. Our free rental analysis is a great place to start when pricing your rentals. They must be careful to not set the price too low because this will make it difficult to cover costs and make a profit. On the other hand, you should not set your price too high because this could lead to longer periods in which the property is vacant. With higher prices, tenants may have difficulty covering the costs. Payment is the most common source of disputes in properties.
Create a Legitimate Agreement
In many cases, agreements are made on a purely conversational or trust basis. This can lead to complicated legal situations if the spoken agreement is not honored or it can mean you are failing to comply with state regulations.
Landlords often choose to work with professional property management agencies that are able to draw up agreements to account for all of the regulations and legalities involved. Property management agencies can also perform a range of other useful services to improve your leases for houses in Atlanta Georgia.
Landlords that try to write their own agreements may run into trouble at a later date. Generic lease agreement forms that can be found online are rarely sufficient.
Run Your Property Like a Business
For many landlords, leasing houses in Atlanta Georgia is an additional source of income rather than a full-time job. But whatever your situation, it's best to view your property rentals as a business. This means that just like any other business you will need to create plans and strategies, carry out research, manage your finances, comply with laws, and put consideration into your image and advertising.
You will also need to check the maintenance that you are legally responsible for and prevent accidents from happening where this is possible. To cover yourself for accidents that could occur, you may consider taking out landlord insurance.
Leasing properties doesn't need to a difficult task, but it can lead to a number of complications if it is not handled in exactly the right way. For landlords, this means that a certain amount of planning, organization, and management is required. It can be challenging for the first time, but with a strict routine in place, landlords will have little to worry about.