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6 Tips to Becoming a Landlord in Memphis

by Melissa Thompson


If investing in Memphis real estate isn’t on your ‘To Do’ list in 2019, you may want to reconsider as Memphis made Forbes.com list of Best Markets For Real Estate Investments in 2019. Memphis is on this list because the local economy is doing well with job growth at 2.2% and housing prices are in line with income prices.

If you have read our blog post, Investing in Real Estate – What You Need to Know, and have taken the leap and bought an investment property, you may be thinking “Now what?” Don’t panic! Here are 6 Tips to get you started on your way to becoming a landlord:

1. Know Landlord-Tenant Law

Most states, Tennessee included, have very specific state Landlord-Tenant laws regarding things like security deposits, landlord access, and evictions. There are also national laws regulating Fair Housing and discrimination. You will want to do your homework and become familiar with these laws as violations can be costly.

2. Screen Tenants

Tenant screening is one of the most important steps to becoming a landlord. Thorough screening will help you to eliminate a multitude of problems further down the road. Use a standard application and require a credit check, background check, and references from employers and past landlords. There are online tenant screening services to help make this process convenient and manageable.

It is also a good idea to meet your prospective tenant in person. Make sure this is someone you want to do business with.

3. Have It In Writing

Always, always, always have everything in writing. You may hit it off with your prospective tenant or be renting to a friend and feel that you are both on the same page but don’t fool yourself, having a written lease is a MUST! Your lease should include items such as a code of conduct, late payments, property maintenance, pets, and landlord accessibility. Tennessee lease agreements can be found online that are easily customizable for your property.

4. Perform Inspections

Frequent inspections (every 3-6 months) will ensure your property maintains its value. Let’s face it tenants are not always diligent with reporting issues. Having a dark spot on the ceiling that may indicate a water leak is probably not top of their list of priorities. But for you, catching the leak early can mean the difference between an inexpensive problem and a very costly one. Don’t feel like you are imposing on the tenant by making inspections. Inspections go a long way to keeping good tenants.

5. Make Repairs Promptly

Another thing that makes tenants happy is making repairs promptly. Don’t make them suffer through a leaking toilet or a garbage disposal that doesn’t work. Your interest in the property encourages a tenant’s interest in the property which keeps your property in good condition.

6. Collect Rents On Time

This may sound like a no-brainer but is gets landlords into hot water more often than you would think. Becoming friendly with a tenant and giving them leniency on rent deadlines is a slippery slope to an eviction and ultimate foreclosure. Be friendly and polite but firm when enforcing the terms of your lease agreement.

Following these guidelines makes for happy tenants and happy landlords!

If you are in the market to buy or sell a home in the Memphis area, contact professional Realtor, Melissa Thompson, and let her help you with all your real estate needs. Give her a call at 901-729-9526 today!

Investing in Real Estate - What You Need to Know

by Melissa Thompson

Real estate investing can be a great way to make money.  But to be successful at it, you need to do your homework first and make sure you know what you’re getting yourself into.  Here are some tips to help you get started:

- Choose an experienced Realtor.  Finding the right agent is critical to successfully capitalize on real estate investments.  You want to find someone who has the knowledge to make the process easier for you.  They should have awareness of location, value, and return on investment.

- Location, location, location!  Research what areas are declining and which ones are on the rise before deciding where to purchase an investment property. If large retailers such as Lowe’s or Home Depot are setting up shop there, it’s probably a good place to invest because big chains do a lot of research before moving in. How to Choose the Best Place to Invest in Real Estate

- If you plan to invest with a partner, make sure you have a partnership agreement drawn up to protect all parties in case something happens.  Relationships can sour and expensive mistakes can happen. Making early decision about how to handle bad situations will help prevent catastrophic results.

- Be prepared to invest for the long term.  When you hold onto a property for a long time, you can manage expenses and income easier and use the money to pay the mortgage.

- Be picky about renters. If you are going to rent to students or rent rooms to different people verses to a family, you may need special permits, depending on where you live. Educate yourself about rules and regulations for renting out your property. How to Choose the Best Tenant for Your Rental

- If you have more than three properties you’re renting out, you would benefit from hiring an experienced property manager. It can be overwhelming when you are trying to take care of multiple homes (including your own!). A property manager will handle repairs and minor problems for tenants. They will help find new tenants as well.  Just keep in mind that property managers usually get around 10% of the monthly rent.

Being a landlord isn’t always easy.  But with the right investment, it can be very rewarding!

If you are in the market to buy or sell a home in the Memphis area, contact professional Realtor, Melissa Thompson and let her help you with all your real estate needs. Give her a call at 901-729-9526 today!

4031 Print Avenue - Opportunity is Knocking!

by Melissa Thompson

Opportunity is Knocking! Charming All On One Level 2 Bedroom Home Featuring New Plumbing, New Carpet, Fresh Neutral Paint, Wrought Iron Security Doors, Durable Tile Flooring in the Bathroom, Cooling Ceiling Fans, Spacious Great Room, Nice Kitchen, Delightful Front Porch, Attic, Roof Only 3 Years Old. Great Starter Home or Investment Property!

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