Property management can be a great way to pull in a secondary income, especially if you’re handy and have a little bit of time on your hands. But getting started owning an investment property isn’t a cut and dry process. There are many things to take into consideration long before you’re ready to list your property and let renters move in.

Kick off your entrepreneurial venture on the right foot with these property management tips from financing and choosing the right property to the finer details like staging the apartment and picking your first set of tenants.

Work with a Knowledgeable Realtor

When you’re ready to purchase your first rental property or a vacation rental, it’s important to lean on local real estate professionals to understand the types of buildings that have the most success renting in the area and the range of rates you can realistically charge your renters. 

The right Realtor will provide useful property purchasing tips for future landlords and provide insight into your area’s real estate market that you didn’t know before you set out to buy an income property.

Create a Financial Plan for Logistics

Among some of the most sound property management tips for landlords out there is the adage that purchasing property requires financial planning. Whether you’re buying your first home or investing in units for tenants, any large purchase of property is going to take a certain level of financial stability and a deep understanding of one’s budget. 

Not only will creating a financial plan help you determine what you can and cannot afford on the market, it’ll help generate property management ideas and determine the best use for your building. Is the building considered luxury? Is its proximity to tourist attractions better suited to a short-term lease rather than a long-term lease?

Understanding these variables will help you gain an understanding of the property’s revenue potential and maximize its earning potential. Determine how much to set aside for expenses like maintenance and upkeep, create a financial plan for renovations and updates and get the most, each month, out of your rental property.

Carefully Screen Your Tenants

Once you’ve purchased the right building or unit for your renting purposes and you’ve made all of the necessary updates while following a budget, the next step is listing your property and finding tenants. Almost all of the property management tips out there recommend creating a comprehensive screening survey for all prospective renters.

Screening surveys help landlords weed out tenants that may not meet minimum salary requirements or violate rules concerning pets. You can create an easy-to-use survey in a Google doc and add a link to it from your property’s posting. Any tenants that don’t meet the baseline renting requirements will be spared any application fees and introduce you to serious inquiries only.

Prepare Your Property for Move-In Day

If you are going to start managing your own income property and you want to establish confidence with your tenants, do a thorough, head-to-toe sweep of the unit prior to your renters’ move-in date. This property management tip might not be immediately apparent to most landlords, but it will certainly help set you apart. 

Fix wobbly hardware on kitchen cabinets, re-caulk tubs, mend dripping faucets and clean tile grout, check lightbulbs, even repaint walls that have seen better days. The more nitty gritty you can be, the more confidence your renters will have in your capabilities as a landlord. 

You can even go a step further with your move-in day sweep and deodorize the unit and main areas of the building with Fresh Wave IAQ’s industry-grade, odor neutralizing products. Freshen carpets in hallways, lobbies, and mailrooms by adding Fresh Wave IAQ Carpet & Upholstery additives to the truck mount of your vacuum or any portable cleaner. This odor neutralizing solution can eliminate odor molecules in porous material like carpet, and will leave a subtle, clean scent that’ll impress any prospective tenant during a move. 

You can also place fresh scents in the air in communal areas with Fresh Wave IAQ Air & Surface Odor Eliminator. Spray down countertops in the game room or vaporize the odor eliminating liquid to distribute fresh scents throughout your building’s gym. You can manually spray fresh scents through hallways and stairwells if your building is small. 

Every little bit helps and making a regular practice of deodorizing your income property’s communal spaces will leave a lasting impression on the tenants currently living in your building as well as the ones stopping by for a tour.