NNY Homes Inc. manages over 90 rental properties for out of town owners. I know the following suggestions may not be feasible for all people but certainly are worth giving them some consideration.
- Most home owners that rent their home to a tenant do so to cover their mortgage expense. Try to have at lease one month reserve to cover the mortgage in case of vacancy or if the tenant is late with the rent.
- Budget for repairs. There will always be that unexpected expense that the owner pays for such as appliances, heating system, roof leaks, ect..
- Consider as the owner having the furnace serviced annually which extends the life of the heating system and helps the owner know in advance of parts that may need replacing.
- How old is your roof? Replacing a roof on a home can cost thousands of dollars and no one likes the news that the roof is leaking. The type of shingle, number of layers, weather can all determine how long your roof will last.
- Pool, hot tubs, whole house generators should be maintained by a professional. Consider making it part of your lease that the tenant pays to have the pool or hot tub professionally opened and closed if they choose to use these items. I suggest the owner cover the expense of servicing the whole house generator twice a year. The cost is normally under $200. per year and is certainly piece of mind for the owner to know the unit is cared for and life expectancy extended by being serviced properly.
Our home is for most of us the single largest investment we have in our lifetime. Finding the right tenant is only part of the puzzle. A positive relationship between the tenants, the property manager and the owner is a win win situation for everyone. Communication can eliminate a lot of stress. If a tenant is going to be late with rent better to be up front and inform the property manager so a plan can be put in place. Remember as the owner of the home that your property manager is limited to how some things can be handled due to tenant/landlord laws in place in your state. NYS has a process that needs to be handled legally for evictions, inspections, ect. and a good property manager will adhere to and work within the law.
Being a landlord can be a positive experience if you know what to expect. A property manager that will give you the brutal honest answers that you may not want to hear at the moment will save your a lot of grief and stress down the road.