Research conducted by Pew in 2021 found that 7/10 landlords are individuals who usually own just one or two properties. If that describes you, then the chances are you're already holding down a full-time job and running your property business as a sideline.
There are no two ways about it: an investment property can be a great form of passive income and give you a nest egg for retirement. But if you're handling property management yourself, it's easy for it to start demanding a lot of time and attention.
Read on for a quick property management guide to help you avoid the pitfalls and make a success of being a landlord.
What Is Property Management?
Property management involves finding tenants, keeping them, and maintaining your investment property.
It begins with getting the property ready for marketing and advertising it via the best local outlets. When inquiries come in, you need to screen potential tenants to find the right fit. Then you need to prepare a contract, arrange the deposit, and collect the rent.
During the tenancy, you need to maintain the property and handle any questions from your tenant. If there are issues with paying the rent, you need to follow up on these. If needed, you may have to start eviction proceedings.
In Jacksonville, all of this needs to be done strictly in accordance with Florida landlord/tenant law. There's a lot involved in property management, and there are certain common property management mistakes you need to avoid.
Skimping on Tenant Screening
When you market your property, you may be glad to take the first person that comes along. After all, a property that is empty costs you a lot of money each month. The problem is that the wrong tenants could end up costing you more.
Tenant screening involves looking at whether the prospective tenant can afford the apartment. It also explores:
- Criminal record
- Past evictions
- Current employment
- References from former landlords
It can help you find the right fit, but if you rush it or skip it, you could get tenants who won't pay and won't care for your property.
Not Inspecting Your Property Regularly
When you've got great tenants, property inspections are a breeze. But you still need to conduct them. They give you a chance to spot potential problems and fix them before they become serious issues.
They also allow you to enforce your lease if the tenants are not fulfilling their responsibilities. Plus, tenants feel that you care and are interested in providing them with a great place to live.
Not Knowing the Law
Florida landlord/tenant law is there to protect both parties. You need to know your responsibilities and meet them in full. You also need to hold your tenants accountable for upholding their end of the bargain.
If you don't follow the law carefully, you could end up in legal difficulties.
Choose Round Table for Stress-Free Property Management
Property management is not for the fainthearted. These property management tips can help you to avoid some of the most common mistakes landlords make. But there are many others we could have explored!
For property management advice and for full-service property management, talk to Round Table Property Management. We can create a customized property management plan for your rental that will provide exactly what you need.
Contact us online or call us at 904.447.0577 to talk about your rental today!