Check list of things to do from closing a rental property to renting it to tenants

What are all things a first time landlord should do to prepare a new property ready for renting?

rental property things to do to find a tenant
Things to do after closing on a rental property until renting it out. -Photo by rawpixel on Unsplash

Are you planning to buy a rental property?

We bought couple of rental properties. It was very stressful with the first one as we had no idea how to proceed with renting it out.

Luckily, I found out a colleague of mine who bought new rental property and went from building the property to renting it out. I learnt a lot from my colleague. I, later, got my own experience. One property got rented right away but the other one took two months to find a tenant. The delay was probably due to the fact that it got ready in September as the school year has already started.

Below are some of the things I had to do for making my property rent out.

Buy appliances like washer, dryer and refrigerator: Do this before the actual closing date if there is any sale going on because you can save a lot of money.

Start thinking about the amount of rent you want to collect.

Find a property management company: I prefer to go with the property management company because they know the rules for the landlord in the particular place where I buy the property and they know how to check the credit report for the prospective tenant. My property management company also changes the lock of the property whenever any new tenant comes in. We formed a group of owners and we got a discount on property management fees as together we have more than 15 properties that our property management company handles.

Start advertising in social media about the availability of your property for rent: You have to start advertising in Craigslist or social media like Facebook or Whatsapp at least a month or two before the property is ready for renting. Sometimes it may be difficult to get a tenant after September that is after the school to start because not many people move after that. Be ready with money to pay the mortgage when the tenant is not available yet.

Install Blinds To the windows: You can do it yourself by buying the blinds which are two inch wide white blinds in Home Depot. You need installation kit which includes drill. If you install yourself, it may take just a day but if you hire somebody, it may take several days due to their availability issues. This may waste a few days for the tenant to enter and you lose money in the process. They may charge a lot of money also. As I mentioned before, always buy Lowes coupon in eBay for couple of dollars before buying anything from Homedepot as they honor Lowes coupons too.

See if you want to install shower door in master bedroom bathroom as shower doors can prevent water from coming out accidentally when the shower curtain is not properly placed while taking bath by the tenant. This can make the water go into air conditioning vent causing problems.

Sealant for the garage floor: I buy couple of sealants from Walmart. I clean the floor of the garage and wash it before applying two coatings of that sealant so that the concrete cement garage floor will last longer from the effects of salt and snow in winter.

Make sure garage door opener is installed. In new constructions, the builder can install it if you asked for it at the time of buying your property.

Remove all the extra loose parts like extra screws and also remove appliance warranty papers and take them to your home. In new properties, the builder leaves all the extra parts, garage door openers, appliance warranty papers in the property so you can take them to your home and keep them safely.

Write instructions and paste near HVAC as to when they should change the air filter in HVAC as most tenants do not care to change the filter. My Property Management ordered air filters for HVAC at the expense of the tenant as they were not changing on time.

Know what cable company provides services: Comcast versus Verizon as the tenant will ask you.

I prefer to change the type of door stopper from spring to soft compressible knob which are available in HomeDepot. This will prevent vibrations in the door when it touches the door stopper and prevent the hinge screws from coming out over time. In my primary home, one of the doors came off as the screws, the builder used, were half inch and they came off easily in a few months. I changed them to one inch long screws and did not have a problem again.

Hope this helps someone who is about to buy first rental property. If you had prior experience, please share your experience below in comments.

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