If your house isn’t selling and your new job is waiting or if selling your house at today’s real estate prices has you bringing money to the closing table, you are probably thinking about becoming a landlord.
Being a landlord can’t be all that difficult. You find a prospective tenant, check their credit, sign a lease agreement and sit back and collect the rent. Sounds easy. Right? I agree on the surface it does sound easy. But before you decide to rent your Spring Texas house you need to ask yourself “Are you landlord material?”.
To find out if you are landlord material, ask yourself these questions:
How do you know a good tenant from a bad tenant? If it’s by their credit score, then what’s a good credit score? What about their criminal history? Do they have the ability to pay you or are they living beyond their means? Are you willing to accept smokers? Are you willing to accept pets? What if the tenant looks good on paper but he turns out to be an arrogant so and so and won’t stop calling you?
How much will your homeowners insurance increase? That’s right … the insurance on your Spring Texas home is higher when you are renting vs living in the home.
Do you know about fair housing laws? It’s your house, you should be able to decide who you are going to rent it to and who you are not. Wrong! Fair Housing Laws prohibit housing discrimination due to race, religion, color, sex, national origin, disability, and familial status.
Who is going to take care of the yard? The Tenant? What happens when the tenant does not take care of the yard. Your home owners association is not going to enforce your tenant to take care of the yard. They are going to enforce you to take care of the yard.
What happens when the tenant stops paying the rent? Who are you going to call to start the eviction process?
How are you going to handle repair requests? Do you have a list of contractors to call when the plumbing gets backed up, the dishwasher goes out, and the air conditioning stops working?