The decision to rent out your home can be made for a number of reasons, maybe you have run into a cash flow problem and want to have someone else pay your mortgage, maybe you have to move but want to hold on to the property, whatever your reason is, there are a number of things that you need to do before doing so.
You will want to clean up before any potential renter arrives to even look at the property. If you can make it work with your budget, maybe even looking into hiring a professional. This is an exceptionally good idea if you have a vacation rental and/or a lot of turnovers. A professional housekeeper can provide some peace of mind as you will know that everything is in pristine condition. It will also save you time – especially if the property in question is not close to where you live full time.
Always Protect Yourself With a Lease
Depending on what you are planning on renting out – an income suite for a year, your primary residence for the weekend, a cottage…etc. – you will want to make sure you’ve got some type of rental agreement or lease. Now, there are a number of rental websites have standard lease agreements, while others allow the homeowners to set their own conditions. Just make sure that you have a legal document in order and set up to protect yourself and your property.
Put Away All of Your Valuables
No matter how much screening you do on potential tenants, you still want to make sure that you are protecting your things. No matter who rents your house, accidents do and most likely will happen and things get broken. So, do everyone a favour and protect the things you love by putting them behind locked doors or take them with you.
Update Your Insurance
Renting out your home has a significant impact on your insurance. Make sure that you have topped it up appropriately. Often this means getting a completely different policy or at the very least adding a rider. So, take some time to talk to your insurance agent about what you need.
Make Some Minor Upgrades
You may not be in the market for a big renovation, but if you are planning on renting out your home you ought to be willing to make some minor upgrades. This will be necessary if you want to get top dollar. Look around your home, consider upgrading your countertop, lighting, flooring or faucet. Make sure you repair any unsightly cracks. Remember that the idea is to improve the value of your home. You want to make it look more appealing to renters without overextending or breaking your budget.
Finally, perhaps the most important step is to plan for emergencies. After all, you never know what can happen to your property. But you do know that it is one of if not the largest financial investment you have made so you will want to protect it and make sure you’re ready for everything. For this reason, it is vital to have an emergency fund in place and ready to go.