Purchasing a rental property is an exciting new step in an investor’s life. Perhaps the most exciting part of purchasing the property is the potential to earn passive income. Before you can earn the passive income, you must get the property rent ready. Orlando’s property management experts at Specialized Property Management have a comprehensive checklist that is followed prior to listing and marketing the property for prospective tenants. First impressions are imperative when it comes to leasing a property. Often, a first impression is all your future tenant will get before they make the decision to settle down at your property. Making certain that every aspect of your property is in pristine condition will allow you to lease the property quicker, getting rent money into your pocket quicker. Below are some suggestions for landlords to follow if they want to have a thorough checklist of items to get ready prior to conducting showings.
Maintenance and Repairs
No one wants to live in a run-down house. Set the precedent that you care about your property by making sure that everything is in working order. If a tenant moves into an Orlando property management house that needs multiple repairs, they will likely treat the house with less respect than if everything is in pristine condition. Upon the move out of the previous tenant, landlords should change the door locks and garage code. During the move-out inspection checklist, test all appliances and systems to see that they are safe and working. This includes everything from the stovetop, tightening the toilet seat, caulking the tub, and seeing that window locks operate correctly. Replace light bulbs as needed, filters on the air conditioning and furnace, check electrical outlets for signs of damage, and open all drawers and cabinets. Many landlords try to save money by turning off the utilities while it is vacant. Many utility companies charge a small fee to transfer the services, but it is worth the small fee to keep the utilities on. No one wants to tour a dark property, even in the daylight hours, so turn lights on before your applicants arrive. In addition to lights, when a refrigerator is turned off, it can begin to have an odor, even when no food is present.
Choosing Upgrades and Improvements with Orlando Property Management
If you find that there is any part of your property that is in need of repair or replacement, take action now. It is far easier to arrange for vendors to enter a vacant property than to schedule vendors while it is occupied. This also saves landlords time because they will not need to post entry notices for occupants. Improvements do not need to be drastic such as new flooring throughout the entire house. It can be on a smaller scale, such as replacing a bathroom vanity and medicine cabinet, updating the paint color on the walls, new and improved window blinds, or new hardware on the kitchen cabinetry and interior doors.
Clean and Remove Items From the Property
Most tenants remove all of their items from their previous rental, but occasionally items are left behind. In the event that a tenant skips out on rent and never comes back, landlords may be left with all of the tenants’ belongings. If a tenant has returned keys and items are still left behind, Orlando property management can haul the items to the dump. If landlords are unable to move the items themselves, there are vendors who specialize in hauling, though it comes at a price. Clean all carpets and flooring and conduct a thorough cleaning of the entire property. Once again, this can be hired out, but should be deducted from the previous tenant’s security deposit if they leave the property unclean. Before vacating the property, tenants should be provided with a cleaning checklist. This provides them with the opportunity to get as much back of their security deposit as possible. If a tenant also wants to clean the carpets themselves prior to moving out, require that they hire a trunk-mounted carpet cleaning service and turn in the receipt. If you allow them to rent a Rug Doctor from Home Depot, they may still turn in a receipt, but it could still be possible that they did not actually clean the carpets. However, a professional cleaning service will not provide a receipt unless the services were rendered.
Curb Appeal that Doesn’t Break the Bank
Curb appeal can do wonders for a home in Orlando. Property managers know that a home that has weeds, dead grass and flowers, and is in need of a paint job, will attract very few renters. However, if a property boasts fresh and lively landscaping with nice-looking paint on the house, landlords will be able to maximize their rental income and lease the property much more quickly. Creating curb appeal does not have to be expensive. There are many affordable ways to spruce up the look of the front of the property. Check the sprinkler system to see that the grass and plants are getting enough water. Trim branches and bushes so they look clean and neat. Clear away the cobwebs from the front porch and sweep the dust away. Inspect the exterior of the property to see if new paint is needed. Clean the windows, repair or replace window screens, and clean up any stains on the driveway. If you want to add a nice touch, install a porch swing or a cute sitting area on the front porch.
Price Your Home Correctly
We get it, you want to get the most rent possible. We do not blame you for wanting this. However, overpricing your vacant rental property can extend the time the property sits empty. Orlando property management teams understand that the only way to make money is to have it occupied, so this is counterproductive. Pricing a rental property aggressively but appropriately will yield the greatest reward. Property managers in Orlando conduct market research to determine similar properties on the market and the listing price. Look for properties within a three-mile radius with similar square footage, bedroom to bathroom ratios, updates and upgrades, and similar lot size. Compare amenities and any utilities that are included in the rent. Once you have conducted a market analysis, determine a rental price. If no one expresses interest in the property, you may need to consider lowering the price by $25 or $50 to see if interest picks up.
Marketing and Advertising Tips
Online advertising is the quickest and easiest way to attract tenants. Many websites offer free advertising, including Zillow, Trulia, Hotpads, and Rentals.com. When listing your property, write a clear and detailed description of the property, what is included in the rental price, and what utilities the tenant can expect to pay in addition to the rent. List your Orlando property management requirements, including security deposit fees, application fees, and rent to income ratios. Be sure to state rules about pets or smoking as well. Once the property is cleaned, take pictures of the interior and exterior. Highlight all of the property’s best features and use the best and most beautiful photo as the featured image on the listing. Property managers in Orlando list properties across multiple websites to increase the number of eyes that see your listing. The more people that see it, the more likely it is to get rented quickly. Yard signage can also prove valuable as neighbors may provide referrals to family and friends who want to live by them. Be diligent that you continue to treat all prospective tenants equally and in accordance with The Fair Housing Act.
Showings of Properties in a COVID-19 Pandemic
Everyone has different comfort levels when it comes to the COVID-19 pandemic, and at Specialized Property Management, we respect that. Our goal is to maintain a healthy and safe community, while still providing housing for those seeking a place to live and rental income to investors seeking to make income. Our Orlando property managers are happy to provide virtual tours to prospective tenants. If prospects must enter the home, we require that they wear a face covering, sanitize their hands, practice social distancing, avoid touching surfaces whenever possible, and follow all leasing agents’ directions.
How Specialized Property Management Can Help You
Our team has more than 30 years of experience and highly trained leasing professionals who are able to lease properties to highly qualified tenants in record time. Our streamlined rent-ready process is efficient and allows our clients to experience lower vacancy rates than what they would experience with our competitors. We offer a full range of Orlando property management services at competitive rates and even price match guarantee. We protect our clients by conducting routine inspections, checking for lease compliance, and cost-effective maintenance. If you are looking to get your home rent ready, occupied with qualified tenants, superior property management, and protect yourself from liabilities, we are here to serve you. Call us today to see how we can help you find your next best tenant.