How to Be A Successful Long-Distance Landlord - Our Guide
The beauty of real estate is you have the freedom to invest in whatever property you want, wherever it is in the world. You don't have to live within the same vicinity, either. Your properties can be located in a different city, a different state, or even a different country. And the best part is you can manage them even if your place of residence is far, far away.
But managing a property remotely isn't easy. While it's a good way to earn extra income, being a long-distance landlord has its fair share of challenges. You can't always make regular visits to your property to ensure that it's being taken care of, and you won't be able to pop in whenever there are emergencies. You have to put 100% of your trust to the tenants and the people you've appointed to help manage the property.
Still, there are many investors and property owners who have succeeded in managing their rentals remotely. Here are some tips that can help you overcome the obstacles often attached to being a long-distance landlord:
Be smart about choosing tenants.
This is something you can't entrust to anyone. You have to personally vet your tenants to make sure that your property will be in good hands. Make sure that you conduct a thorough screening of each of them before letting them move in. Look into their financial history, rental stability, income sources, references, and criminal records. Interview them to gauge their personality. You have to trust your gut to find trustworthy tenants. Once they move in, you also have to keep in touch regularly to make sure that everything is okay.
Automate rent payments.
Collecting payments from far away is tricky. You can't always rely on mailed rent checks as you'll only increase the possibility of "lost in the mail" situation, whether or not it's the truth. Luckily, there are payment platforms out there that makes collecting and tracking payments online a breeze. These apps let tenants pay their dues via ACH, debit card, or credit card, allowing you to receive rental income straight to your account without dealing with paper checks.
Secure landlord insurance.
A standard homeowner's insurance may not be sufficient in covering your tenants and the damages they may possibly incur. It's always wiser to look into insurance policies designed for landlords as those typically offer additional protection against financial loss and obligations associated with your property. As an added precaution, you can also require your tenants to secure renters insurance that will cover their personal belongings and liability damages.
Hire a property management company.
While you can always ask your friends and family living around the area to help manage your property, it's better if you entrust the work to a reputable property management company. Not only will they help take care of any repairs and stay on top of maintenance, but they can also aid in marketing the property as well as managing showings should it become vacant. What's more, they can also help in complying with state laws.
Having to manage a property long-distance may be challenging, but it's certainly not impossible. By following the tips above, you can ensure that your property will remain in good condition and your tenants happy. If you’re in New York and need help in property management, get in touch with us today. We’re happy to help.