Turning your house or apartment into a rental property can be a very good idea, especially if it’s in good shape, in a good neighborhood and you are careful to rent to the right tenants. Of course there is a little more to making sure your property is rent-ready than just simply interviewing the tenants and showing them around, so here are 5 of the most important tasks that need to be done before you can a new tenant a set of keys:
1.) Professionally clean the entire interior. That means carpets, behind the refrigerator and every other part of your home that you can think of. The reason it needs to be cleaned professionally is because this is what these people do: they know every single nook and cranny that needs to be cleaned and they will make sure the place is in tip-top shape before you have anyone move in.
2.) Re-key the locks. And not just the front and back door either: the garage door codes and any alarm codes need to be reset as well. Under no circumstance should anyone be allowed entry to that house on their own terms besides you and your future tenants. Plus, don’t forget the mailboxes, storage sheds or any gates that lead to the property as well.
3.) Repair and fix anything that might be broken. You don’t want your new tenants moving into your home for a number of reasons: first of all, it’s just plain rude, but second of all, it leaves them to their own devices to try and correct the problem. Put a financially struggling college student in a home with a broken heater and they might think it was a good idea to build a small fire in their bedroom to keep warm. You can see how this can go downhill fairly quickly.
4.) Spray for pests. Pest control is a huge issue, and if left unchecked it can turn into a bigger problem than it already is. Spraying before you have anyone living in your home will make the tasks infinitely easier and you won’t have to deal with all the damage that will be going on right under your nose if an unknown pest problems goes unreported for a significant length of time.
5.) Inspect all safety devices. Door locks are no good unless they actually keep someone from coming in, just as smoke detectors are no good unless they actually detect smoke and then give off a detectable warning. Your renters’ safety is in your hands, so make sure all of the proper safety devices are in perfect working order before anyone even thinks about moving in.