- 9 Jul, 2017

7 Tips for Managing Your Own Investment Property

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If you’re a people-person, then managing your investment property may suit you. But, just remember you need to interview potential tenants, negotiate terms and understand tenancy laws. While this may sound complicated, it’s straightforward. Let’s look at how you can manage your investment now.

#1 Setting the Rent

Before you rent your property, you need to set a competitive weekly rent. Otherwise, you’ll find it difficult to find a tenant.

How do I set the rent?

  • Visit real estate sites.
  • Click on the ‘rent’ tab.
  • Type in your suburb.
  • Compare your property to others that are similar.
  • Select your rental fee.

#2 Marketing the Property

For a tenant to find your property, you’ll need to advertise. There are several ways to get your property out there; some are free while others incur a fee.

How do I advertise my property?

  • Directory listing websites.
  • Local papers.
  • Shopping centre notice boards.
  • On-site signage.

What should I put in my ad?

  • Property benefits and features.
  • Weekly rental cost.
  • Number of bedrooms and bathrooms.
  • Parking and transport options.
  • The proximity to amenities.
  • Fixtures and fittings.
  • Lifestyle options – outdoor entertaining, land size, views, etc.

#3 Selecting a Tenant

Finding the right tenant is a simple process. Create a tenancy application form in Word and print this out.

What should the tenancy application include?

  • The property details, including weekly rent and bond.
  • Personal applicant details.
  • Residential history.
  • Employment history.
  • Income details.
  • Any references.
  • 100-ponts of identification.

What do I need to check?

  • Always check identification and make sure this person is living in your property.
  • Contact employers and verify rates of pay, or ask for a statement of income.
  • Review any criminal background.
  • Check references.

#4 Understanding Laws

Many tenancy laws apply in each state. As a property manager, you must abide by these rules always. If you’re not sure of these, then look up the tenancy act for your state. Then, read these and familiarise yourself with the law.

What are the basics of these laws?

  • You and your tenant should sign a standard residential tenancy agreement.
  • Both you and the tenant should sign a property condition report.
  • Lodge the bond with the state tenancy body in the time specified.
  • Give the tenant rent receipts, and keep a duplicate.
  • If rent is late, issue a reminder.

All forms needed to manage your rental property are downloadable from your state tenancy office. Often, forms include a lease agreement, property condition report, rent increase notice and more.

#5 Keeping Paperwork

It’s important to keep good records. Subsequently, keep all receipts, rent, property maintenance and any other costs. Always keep records up-to-date for taxation purposes.

What records do I need to keep?

  • Weekly rent payments.
  • Any property maintenance receipts.
  • Arrange for a quantity surveyor to carry out a depreciation report.

#6 Increasing Rent

When your tenant first moves in, they’ll pay the rent set by you. This rent is valid for the term of the tenancy agreement – 6 or 12-months. Any rental increases after this time must be fair and reasonable.

How do I increase the rent?

  • Wait until a month before the tenancy agreement comes up for renewal.
  • Research the market and compare yours to similar properties.
  • Marginally increase the weekly rental rate to match inflation.
  • Write this new figure in the tenancy agreement.

#7 Inspections

Under leasing laws, you can conduct property inspections every three months. Before visiting a tenant though you must give them 7-days written notice.

What are the benefits of inspections?

  • The tenant keeps the property well maintained.
  • You can see the building’s condition.
  • You’re able to discuss repairs and property changes.

Did you know you can compare 100s of investment home loans with eChoice? Our brokers assist you to find the right mortgage.


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