6 Tips For Landlords Renting Out Their Property for the First Time

Tip #1

Make sure you learn the landlord-tenant laws for your area.  

You will need to learn about security deposit laws, time-frames to give notice for various lease violations (including non-payment of rent), maintenance and repair laws and a whole lot more.  You can check out out state-specific landlord-tenant laws and resources pages here.

Tip #2

Learn about fair housing laws.

Federal fair housing laws protect renters from discrimination based on race, color, national origin, religion, sex, disability and familial status.  Many states, counties and municipalities have additional protected classes.  

Tip #3

Get the proper rental forms.

Make sure you have a state-specific rental agreement and the required forms and disclosures.  Depending on the type of property and age you may need to have a lead-based paint disclosure.  You should also have a condition of premises with a clear and concise statement of the condition of the property at the time it was rented.  Of course, you will also want a good rental application.  You can use a free service like Turbo Tenant to collect rental applications online.

Tip #4

Make sure you screen your tenants.

As they say:

 "The best way to avoid an eviction is with a good application and good tenant screening."

Make sure you contact landlords references, employers and also get a credit and criminal background report on every tenant.  Services like Turbo Tenant make it very easy to do tenant screening and provide a copy of credit and criminal tenant reports at no cost to the landlord.

Tip # 5

Make sure the property is presentable and well-maintained.

Bad properties tend to attract bad tenants.  If you want nice renters make sure the property looks nice.  Make sure all the plumbing, heating, electrical, appliances, etc. are all well maintained and functioning properly.  Have the property professionally cleaned and take good quality photos for marketing.

Tip #6

Give the most possible exposure to your property so you have the largest pool of applicants.

Over 90% of tenants look for rental properties online so make sure you are online with your marketing. You can use a service like Turbo Tenant to help give your property the most possible exposure at no additional cost.