If you’re thinking about managing your rental property on your own, you need to be prepared for everything that’s involved.
First – Prepare Your Property
This means figuring out exactly what you have to do to the home to make it ready for the rental market. You need to hire the right people to get it ready and you need to know which specific things to pay attention to so you can ensure you get the most out of your San Jose rental property.
What’s Next – Advertising
You need to know where to advertise. There’s Craigslist and Zillow.com and at least a hundred other online sites. Hopefully, you know which of them are the most effective and which ones cost money. Your ad will need to include how much rent you’re charging. You’ll also want photos that make your property look great to prospective renters.
What’s Next – Showing the Property
If your ad is effective, you’ll have people calling and emailing because they want to see the property. You need to be responsive, otherwise they’ll move onto other ads. Showing the property might be hard to do with family, friends and work responsibilities competing for your attention. Also, people will want to see the house on evenings and weekends. Make sure you can accommodate them.
What’s Next – Applications
Someone wants to apply for your property, so you need to get an application. That application should ask specific questions but not discriminatory questions. You’ll have to run their credit and check landlord references. Make sure you have a plan in place to verify that it’s actually a previous landlord you’re speaking to. Do a criminal background check and verify their income.
After you’ve approved an application, it’s time to sign the lease. Get a good lease that includes all the information that’s necessary. There are specific legal requirements that need to be included in your rental contract and you’ll also need to collect a security deposit. Make sure your lease stipulates when rent is due and how the tenant should pay – whether it’s check, cash, credit card or direct deposit.
What’s Next – Move In
Before a tenant moves in, you’ll need to do a walk through. Decide whether the tenant should be present for that walk through. Then, figure out how to handle any maintenance requests that come in if the tenant finds something you missed during the walk through. Make sure you’ll know who to send to complete that maintenance. It has to be a person you can trust in your property while a tenant is there.
What’s Next – Emergencies
As soon as you feel like things are running smoothly, you’ll get a call in the middle of the night from your tenant because a pipe has burst and there’s flooding in the house. You’ll need to know who to call at that hour and what to do. If there’s a lot of damage in the house, you’ll need to find out if your insurance will cover it.
What’s Next – Liabilities
There’s more. You have to know about all the current rental laws, including discrimination legislation and local, state and federal regulations. You’ll need to make sure you have proper landlord insurance. You’ll need to know what to do if your tenant doesn’t pay rent or destroys your home.
It might seem like too much. If your head is aching and your heart is beating fast, it’s time to call a professional San Jose property manager. Real Estate Connections is a professional property management firm in Silicon Valley. We have been managing property the area for over 50 years and connecting people with property. We are experts who can handle everything. We take care of your most valued asset so you don’t have to deal with the headaches. If you have any questions or need any help, contact us at Real Estate Connections.