Turning your house into an income rental property? Follow these steps to ensure you and your future tenants have a pleasant experience.

  1. Declutter. This will usually be done in several phases. For an extended-stay rental property, you’ll likely be moving out. Don’t use your rental property as a storage place. Get everything out so you have a blank space. At the very least, designate an owner’s closet that you can put a lock on for storing minimal items and cleaning supplies.
  2. Paint your entire home a neutral color. Choose a light and bright neutral color. Check out this list of commonly used paint colors for rental properties.
  3. Make a home improvement fix-list. Here’s what to look for.
    1. Things that are broken
    2. Things that are dirty
    3. Lightbulbs that are burnt out
    4. Paint that needs touching up
    5. Carpet that’s stained.
  4. Complete the list.
  5. Clean, clean, clean. Consider hiring a professional cleaning service to do a deep clean of your house, including carpets, tile grout, and baseboards. Your place should be spotless.
  6. Switch out for LED light bulbs. LED bulbs provide bright light and are more energy-efficient. Store some extras in the garage as a nice bonus for your tenant.
  7. Purchase new bed and bath linens. For short-term renters, you’ll likely be furnishing the home. Outfit each bed with new sheets and blankets. Plus, keep an extra set in storage so you can quickly turn your house for a new renter. For each adult, supply up to four clean towels both large and small. Keep a few extra sets on hand.
  8. Make sure trash cans are clearly visible. From experience, we’ve found that convenience is key. Arrange a trash can in each bathroom and in the kitchen so that they’re easy to find.
  9. Print out a list of rules and expectations. Trash pickup schedule, HOA rules, and your own set of expectations should be typed out in a list for the renter. This will eliminate the number of times they reach out to you for questions.
  10. Decide on a cleaning or pet fee. If you want to charge a cleaning or pet fee on top of your rent, decide how much you will charge and if it will be refundable upon checkout. Clearly define your terms for refunding any fees.
  11. Write up your contract. Putting together a renter’s contract can be a daunting task. Luckily, there are professionals that can help.
  12. Brighten your curb appeal. Many long-term renters will walk into a blank canvas inside, but that doesn’t mean you can’t add some designer touches on the outside. Brightly colored plants and a freshly manicured lawn will make your house feel inviting and warm.  

If dealing with the needs of a renter doesn’t fit your future vision, but you still want the income of a rental property, we’re here to help. At Shield Property Management, we’re committed to freeing up your precious time while boosting the success of your rental. We’ll market your property, screen potential tenants and take care of the paperwork to minimize the amount of time your property sits vacant.

For more information on Shield Property Management’s three tiers of services, contact our team today.

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