Home Inspections: Why They Matter
Renting the properties you own to tenants can be an excellent choice if you are looking for a new income stream; however, it is crucial that you have your real estate in Atlanta inspected before new tenants move in. It is the duty of the landlord and property manager to ensure that the home is safe to move into. Continue reading to take a brief look at home inspections and find out why they matter.
If you allow new tenants to move into a home that does not provide safe and sanitary living conditions, you may find yourself involved in some legal issues. This is why it is crucial that you have all of your properties inspected before renting them out. A home inspection can ensure that the home has adequate structural integrity, a properly functioning plumbing system, and appropriate ventilation. These elements all play substantial roles in the safety of the home and the ability of your new tenants to avoid injury or harm. Your home inspector can also take a look at your ceilings, walls, and floors as well as your electrical systems and insulation. A home inspection will point out any problems that you may need to resolve before renting your house.
Landlords have the right to approve or deny any changes that a tenant may request to make on a home, since it is the landlord who actually owns the real estate in Atlanta . In the event that you approve a tenant’s request to make any sort of changes, it is wise to write a letter of permission that outlines exactly what you are allowing. Watch this video for assistance in writing permission letters to tenant.
Permission letters are used to grant tenants permission to modify some aspect of the home that they rent. Be sure to be as specific as possible when writing this type of letter so that there is no confusion as to where the boundaries lie. Include any stipulations, caveats, and conditions that must be satisfied in order for permission to be granted, and ask your property management company to review the letter with you. Date and sign the letter, and then send it via certified mail as well as email.
Tenant Screening Tips
If you rent out real estate in Atlanta, you probably know that screening your potential tenants prior to renting to them can afford you a lot of peace of mind. There are many risks that come with renting to people you haven’t fully vetted, such as damage to your property, loss of rent, and the added hassle and expense of legal fees associated with evictions and lawsuits. Luckily, there are a number of things that you can do to protect your investment and yourself from harm.
Always Use a Rental Application
You can find various rental applications online, or you can create a specialized one for your property. A good rental application asks for basic verifiable information for each person who will be renting from you, such as name, current address and phone number, employer, current and former landlords, employment and banking information, and personal references. If you allow pets in your rental properties, you will also want detailed information on the number, type, and breed of pets owned by the applicants. Verify all of this information by calling the applicants’ employers, references, and landlords.
Run a Background Check and Credit Check
You can check the applicants’ credit reports through one of the three credit reporting agencies. If an applicant is in major debt or has a history of paying bills late, he or she will likely not be a responsible tenant. Running basic background checks will provide you with the applicants’ criminal records and inform you if an applicant has ever been evicted. You can also find out if an applicant has filed for bankruptcy or has been sued by bill collectors or previous landlords.
Consider Using a Property Management Company
A property management company can be of great assistance to a landlord who lives far away from his or her rental properties or who simply doesn’t have the time necessary to conduct proper tenant screenings. A residential property management company will help you find and screen tenants, manage lease agreements, and handle maintenance issues and evictions.