Turn That Spare Home Into a Rental With a Charleston Property Manager!
Do you have plans to move into a different home—but you would prefer not to sell your current home? You're not alone: many homeowners are looking for ways to turn their current properties into rental income opportunities! Working with a skilled property manager, Charleston investors, helps turn this dream into a reality.
As soon as you decide not to sell your home, you're on the path to becoming an investor! Taking this step is also beneficial because, instead of buying, renters are looking for move-in ready homes in the Charleston area. In today's article, we're going to discuss some things you can do as a newly-minted investor to turn your home into a rental property.
If you decide after considering this list that the workload looks a little daunting, don't give up! You can always reach out to us here at Charleston Property Company for guidance.
Assess Your Home's Condition
Do you need to fix, renovate, or update anything? Now is the time to take care of these tasks. It's impossible to see every issue that could create problems when renters move in. Instead, enlist the help of property management companies in Charleston to help you identify what needs fixing.
They'll bring in an inspector who generates a report focusing on what you have to fix or apply their understanding of the Charleston rental market to point out useful upgrades. It's often challenging for new investors to view their former home from the perspective of a potential renter—so working with a property manager, Charleston investors, can be very useful to get started.
These professionals have a database of trusted contractors they'll recommend for these tasks. From there, you can ask them to find an affordable contractor, or you can identify which one you would like to use. While this does require an investment, it's far better than trying to address repairs or updates after the renter moves in!
Contact Your Insurance Company
Homeowner's insurance is different than having a policy for a rental property. If you keep your existing homeowner's policy, it doesn't offer the correct coverage. For example, because people are living on a piece of property that you own, you're taking on responsibilities regarding their safety. Ask yourself the following questions:
- Do you know what to do if heavy tree limbs fall and injure one of your residents?
- What if a repair or other issues starts off as minor and leads to a legal nightmare?
- What happens if damage occurs that makes the property unrentable for a time?
Answering these questions—and thinking about these realities—isn't easy for anyone! That's why it's critical to pick up an investment policy that covers renters.
That way, if extensive damages or injuries occur, there's adequate coverage. If you have more questions about this, working with a property manager, Charleston investors, is an excellent way to sort through the legalities and coverages.
Look at Your Mortgage's Terms and Conditions
While it's a great idea to live in a home before renting it, that doesn't always mean you can turn it into a rental property. When you get a mortgage as its primary resident, the terms often include lower down payments and interest rates. However, the mortgage company does expect you to live on the premises.
Therefore, you must look at the terms and conditions of your mortgage. You may find an occupancy clause stipulating how long you must live on the property as the primary resident. Violating this occupancy clause could result in the mortgage company making the payoff due as soon as they find out.
Talk to your mortgage lender to see if you need to refinance the loan to turn it into a rental property. Some mortgage companies aren't willing to take that risk on, while others complete the refinance to include clauses for renters.
Locate High-Quality Renters
High-quality residents pay their rent on time, they don't cause trouble with the neighbors, and they maintain properties as if they own them. Before you can find these renters, you must get familiar with the Fair Housing Act. Setting rental fees, marketing to potential renters, and screening applicants is overwhelming for many.
You can take the headache out of these tasks by working with a skilled property manager, Charleston investors! Your property manager will handle:
- Marketing and advertising
- Managing applicants
- Tenant screening services
- Setting rental rates according to market rates
- Performing walkthroughs and showings.
Set Boundaries and Rules
If you've ever rented before, can you remember a time when you thought your former landlord might have been a little too stern? They're like that for a reason: becoming too personal with renters is a risk for rental property owners! It's alright to be friendly while being professional, but boundaries are crucial to running a successful business. From the beginning, delineate these professional boundaries and devise a set of rules all renters must follow. This is essentially laying the foundations of your lease!
Working with a property management company also helps create that professional boundary you need. In addition to rent collection and managing maintenance calls for you, they won't let residents push you around. Having that boundary in place also makes it easier for the property manager to enforce your rules.
We Help Turn Your Current Home Into a Successful Rental Property!
You know you want to move—but you're not ready to sell your current home. There's nothing wrong with that, and it's a great income opportunity. As your property manager, Charleston investors, we'll always put our years of experience to work for you!
If investing is your goal, let us guide you through the process of vetting contractors, understanding insurance policies, considering your mortgage terms, and finding high-quality renters!