Investment Property

When it comes to investment properties, the right tenant(s) are key factors in the entire process.  Of course the property itself is extremely important.  You would have already gone through the steps to verify the house your purchased as an investment property, should have a good rate of return.  A large part of that return, is dependent on the type of tenant you allow to occupy your investment property.

As a landlord, you are responsible for pretty much everything, unless you hire a property manager to take care of your property for you.  A good property manager will follow the steps to find you a quality tenant, and most cases there will be few issues.  When you are doing the steps yourself, you need to make sure you don’t skip any steps, or risk putting a bad tenant in your property, which can drastically reduce the return expected on your investment property.

Step 1

Get the property ready for a tenant to occupy.  It will need to be clean, holes in walls filled and painted, shampoo’d carpets, and just overall great shape, and begin advertising.

Step 2

Have potential tenants fill out an application, provide proof of income/employment letter, a credit check (can be purchased from Equifax or TransUnion) and provide references.  Call the references.  Ask them questions.  Why are you moving?  Have you ever been evicted?  How many people will be living here?  Do you or anyone living with you smoke?  What is your typical day like?

All these questions (and don’t limit it to these few) will help you determine the quality of your applicants.

Step 3

Make a decision to offer the property to someone you have interviewed.  Or more importantly, don’t.  Do not be afraid to go a month with a vacant property, to prevent a bad tenant.  Yes, a month of your mortgage isn’t fun to pay out of pocket.  A few months of it, and the time and cost to remove a bad tenant, and the cost to clean and fix any damage will cost way more than a one month vacancy.  Make sure you get first and last month rent before they get their keys, to make sure even in a bad scenario, you at least get 2 months rent.