Congratulations on your new status as a landlord in Nigeria. As a landlord, you will have to navigate through the deep waters of payment of rent, tenants, legal issues, house maintenance and many more. Below are practical tips to make the process of a Landlord easy.
Try to separate your emotions completely when choosing tenants.Although your conscience may feel better offering your property to someone who lost their source of income, at the end of the day you need to remember that you’re running a business. Never let personal relationships cloud your view of the bottom line. Emotions don’t pay the bills- be logical.
Screen Tenants Properly
Screening tenants is a major issue. You need to be objective and verify your tenant’s financial capacity as this will be deciding factor if the tenant will pay his/her rent on time or behind on rent payment. Do not rent your house to someone just because they come recommended from your friend. Never take the explanation or recommendation at face value but carry out your own research first.
Also to focus on how a prospective tenant communicates with you throughout the renting process as this will serve as a pointer to what kind of communication they will have with you as a tenant. Don’t rush your decision. Look for people that are open, honest, and who possess the financial capacity to pay rent on time.
Rent is your revenue as a Landlord. Never allow the tenant to pay late without penalty. Ensure you agree in writing to a monthly or yearly payment plan. If you allow your tenant pay late, it may lead quickly to a pile of unpaid rent.
Also, if your tenants just stop paying rent and starts ignoring your calls or texts, you need to start eviction proceedings immediately. Contact your lawyer about eviction proceedings.
Manage Your Rented House As A Business
Don’t be overly friendly with your tenants instead have a business- like relationship with your tenants. A friendly relationship between landlord or tenant tends to sour quickly especially when the tenant’s rent is still unpaid or when you are trying to increase the former rent value. Treat your tenant with respect as you would a business colleague.
Know The Housing Laws
Many landlords failed to educate themselves on housing laws which often time leads to serious implications if you violate them. Every property is governed by a specific set of landlord-tenant laws established by the government of the state. Landlord-tenant laws are state laws that will protect the owner, the property and the tenants alike in all forms of rental transactions.
If you have yet to check out the landlord-tenant laws in your state, you will find that there is a rule for almost every scenario that could arise between a landlord and tenant interaction.
Failing to follow landlord-tenant laws can result in a lawsuit and lost income. It is advisable to have a lawyer manage your legal dealings and explain your rights as a landlord, your tenant rights and the tenancy laws that operate in your State of residence. Remember, ignorance is not an excuse in the court of law, so get informed.
Never invest in any form of renovations or remodeling if it would not generate higher rent. The giddiness that comes with be a first-time landlord is spending a lot of money on your house. There is nothing wrong with remodeling but if it does not directly cause an increase in rent value then don’t spend it instead of saving your money.
A peculiar mistake made by first-time landlords is not keeping records. If you don’t keep proper records of your building’s revenue and expenses it will affect your ability to ascertain the exact cost spent or received from your property.
Kindly share your first experience has a landlord with other ToLet readers.