If you have an apartment that you are moving out of or not currently living in then you might want to consider renting it out. Before you jump into renting out the apartment you need to know what you have to do and what you need to take into account.
Renting Direct Or Through An Agency
The first point you need to consider is if you are going to be renting the apartment directly to the tenant or if you are going to use a letting agency or property management firm. Renting directly is cheaper because you do not have to pay fees to the agency. However, renting directing can be more time consuming because you have to screen the tenants, set up viewings and be the person the tenants contact if anything goes wrong.
When you use an agency you will have 2 options in terms of the services that they provide. It is possible to hire the agency to find the tenants and handle the legal documents. This will generally cost a flat fee. You can also choose to have the agency do everything from finding the tenant to collecting rent and organizing any repairs. There will generally be a monthly fee for this service which the agency takes from the rent they collect.
Furnished Or Unfurnished?
Once you decide how you will be renting the apartment you will need to consider if you are going to rent it furnished or unfurnished. Furnished apartments will generally have higher rental incomes, but you will need to carefully consider the furniture in the apartment. You will need to ensure that it is all in functioning condition and that it meets health and safety standards. Some states will require that fire resistant furniture be used and it will need to have the fire safety tags on it.
If you rent the apartment unfurnished you may have to settle for a lower rental price. However, if you are targeting certain tenants then you are likely to rent the apartment quicker. Older tenants are likely to have their own furniture while younger tenants could be looking for a furnished apartment.
Consider The Tenancy Terms
While an agency will be able to handle the legal agreements you will still need to provide some input into the tenancy terms. You will have to determine the initial length of the tenancy. Many agencies recommend that a 6-month tenancy is done first and then a longer term set for any renewals.