4 Tips for Finding Investment Property Opportunities

by Chris Lang on December 17, 2014
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Investing in property for the first time is a big step, and one that needs to be thoroughly researched. However, there are a few initial considerations to mull over in order to set you on the right track. 1. Think about your target tenants Consider what kind of tenant you would like. Are you looking […]

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Habits of renters and sharers 2013

by Chris Lang on June 7, 2013
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An interesting survey by realestate.com.au reveals curious insights into who the renters are, their age, income and reasons why they are renting instead of buying. They asked about 2500 people looking for a rental home a few questions online, and here’s what they found: Most of the respondents were female (72%) – this is quite […]

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Renting a house and have a problem? Here’s how to get help.

by Chris Lang on January 31, 2012
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Renting is the most natural choice when you can’t afford to buy your own house (or simply choose not to). I bet almost anyone reading this post right now has had to rent at some point in life. And while renting is supposed to be quite straight forward – you find a suitable house, rent […]

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10 Tricks To Find The Best Tenants

by Chris Lang on July 5, 2010
10 Tricks To Find The Best Tenants

Good tenants My dearest tenants, as much as I enjoy talking to you every chance I get, this article is more for the landlords amongst us. It is a good chance for tenants to see things from the landlord’s perspective though :)

Using tricks to find the best tenants can make managing your property virtually pain free. There is probably no worse stress for a landlord then having tenants who do not maintain the property or who don’t pay the rent on time. One of the ways to make sure this does not happen to you is by getting great renters from the beginning. It can be hard to determine upon first meeting people if they will make good renters but you can draw better renters to your property by following a few tricks of the trade.

Top 10 Tricks To Find The Best Tenants

1. Make a great first impression. This is about you and how you look and act when you show the property. If your appearance is neat and you behave in a professional manner then responsible tenants will want to do business with you.

2. Clean the whole home. Whenever you show a house make sure it is sparkling clean condition. This means every corner should not only look clean but smell clean. No matter how neat a home is, if it smells like cat pee no reasonable person will want to rent it.

3. Spruce up old paint. Paint is an easy and quick fix to making a place look better. The rule of thumb is to stick with white paint because it makes rooms look bigger and brighter. Don’t forget to touch up the trim too as it can get quite grimy.

4. Make sure the outside of the house is appealing too. One of the tricks to finding the best tenants is to present the home in the way you want it to be kept. If people are willing to rent a house with an overgrown yard and trash in the lawn then they will probably not take care of the house once it is theirs.

5. Try not to show a house on trash day. This is a great thing to keep in mind because garbage days make the whole neighbourhood look a little rough. In addition to the trash bins and bags there will be a bad smell and the possibility of critters that drag trash down the street.

6. Clean up building common areas. If you are renting an apartment make certain that areas like the front hall, laundry facility, and mailboxes are neat and tidy. Your potential tenants will check out these spots before they make a final decision.

7. Make sure the rooms make sense. If someone is currently living in the home and uses the dining room as their home office have them move those items to a more traditional location. This way you can show the house with rooms being used in a traditional manner which helps renters visualise their things in it.

8. Repair anything that needs fixed. Look at your rental with new eyes and repair even the smallest items that need it like replacing damaged blinds and re-glazing the bathtub or sink. No renter worth their salt wants to put down the money to rent a home that needs work before they move in.

9. Clean out forgotten areas. Once you live in a home it is easy to overlook things like kitchen cabinets which can hold dust and dead insects, or windows that are covered with fingerprints. However, when you are looking at a rental home you will notice and probably be a little disgusted with the mess.

10. Clean out the appliances. Potential renters will look inside refrigerators and stoves and there is nothing worse then seeing burnt on food or mold inside. Clean it out and you will likely get the same level of clean from your tenants.

These tricks to find the best tenants can go a long way toward making your rental process easy. Remember that people who are willing to accept a home in less then perfect condition are unlikely to keep it in better shape then they found it. On the other hand people who maintain their home and take pride in paying rent on time want a house that is worth their effort so they will be attracted to a well kept place. Rental property is a great investment but it is a lot of work, especially with deadbeat tenants. Do your best to make your home attract the best tenants around.

This article was written by William Eve who is a regular personal finance writer for Home Loan Finder, a 100% free mortgage comparison and application service. Whether a first home buyer or investor, visit the Home Loan Finder website for more quality information and guides on competitive mortgage products.

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Periodic tenancy vs fixed term contract – which is best for tenants?

by Chris Lang on July 27, 2009
Periodic tenancy vs fixed term contract - which is best for tenants?

Parking for tenants onlyWhen you sign a rental contract, usually it will be for a fixed term tenancy. Fixed term means that there is a period of time where you can’t move out without breaking the lease and paying the costs associated with it. In most cases people sign such contract for a year.

Imagine that your 12 months are about to end, you’re still living in that house, unit or apartment with no intention to move out, and the estate agent calls and says: “Your contract is approaching it’s termination date, why don’t you come by the office and sign a new one”. And you know what – there is one thing he forgets to mention.

You don’t have to sign a new contract. You can stay right there, continue paying your rent and not sing anything, and still be a lawful tenant because there is a thing called “periodic tenancy”.

Periodic tenancy means you are renting on month-to-month basis. In your original contract one of the clauses is about tenancy of this nature and if there is no fixed term contract signed when the original contract expired, that’s what happens. You become a periodic tenant and it’s like your contract renews itself every month.

Of course there are pros and cons to both fixed and periodic tenancy contracts.

Fixed term contract – reasons for and against

For: When you’re on fixed contract, the landlord can’t decide he wants to raise the rent next month – he has to give you a notice of 3 months and you have more time to disagree and fight that raise, if you believe it is unreasonable.

For: Should your landlord decide he wants you out, they must give you a 3 months notice, which is plenty of time to go and find another place to live.

Against: On the downside, if you decide to move out in the middle of your second year of renting, that would be breaking the lease and heavy costs are often characteristic for such cases.

Periodic tenancy contract – reasons for and against

For: If you were on month-to-month basis and want to move out, a simple notice of one month should be enough for you to not owe your landlord anything.

Against: If your landlord sells the house you live in and wants you out, he too is not required to give you more than one month’s notice. It can be very stressful for a person to suddenly find out that they need to look for another house, find one and move in a month.

I guess this comes down to your plans and choosing the kind of rental contract depends on whether you need to freedom to move out whenever you like.

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Tips for Tenants – How to Break a Lease

by Chris Lang on December 23, 2008
Tips for Tenants - How to Break a Lease

Life is full of surprises and things don’t always go the way we’d like them to. So it happens that after you’ve searched for a rental house and found one, moved in and started getting used to the new neighborhood, something comes up and you have to move to a different place.

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