When a homeowner needs to move, most assume they will be selling their house. When I meet with clients during a seller’s meeting, we explore their priorities and the range of options for their situation.
Part of that picture may include renting their home—either temporarily or long term—whether they’re moving nearby or relocating out of the state or the country.
Sometimes a homeowner chooses to rent out their home because they know the rental market is strong (they’ll likely have their choice of tenants). Also, with home prices having increased significantly in recent years, acquiring an investment property now or in the future may cost well more than they paid for their home when they first bought it.
And some just want to know that they or a family member could have an in-town or back-up place to call home should they need that in the future.
If they can pull some of the equity from the property in order to buy their next home while maintaining both with the help of rental income, that may be an attractive choice.
If you’re a homeowner contemplating these options, here are questions and resources to consider:
Are you comfortable being a landlord?
Think about what aspects of renting a property you have an appetite for and what you may not. For example, do you want to:
- market the property
- vet prospective tenants
- coordinate ongoing maintenance
- manage urgent repairs
- handle a lease break
How long of a rental arrangement would you need—short-term or ongoing?
The lease structure may depend on whether you’re looking to create income or simply have the property pay for itself until you’re ready to use it again later or ultimately sell it.
Intermediate option while you prepare to sell
We can talk about options for shorter-term renting, whether furnished or not. You’ll always want to weigh how the timing in the market affects your tenant options, when you’d want to regain access to the property, and the possibility of wear and tear.
There are many aspects to renting your property, from logistics to landlord and tenants rights. You don’t have to go at it alone.
Find a tenant professionally
I work closely with the full-service rental department within my firm, Unlimited Sotheby’s International Realty. We have full-time rental agents and a full-time rental manager to advise on your best rental solution. Our leasing services include:
- advising you on pricing and timing for coming to market
- what features are most marketable
- advertising and showing your property
- reviewing an applicant’s credit and references
- negotiating and coordinating the lease
“The first time I had to find tenants, I tried doing it myself. What a hassle—I didn’t have a clue. Unlimited Sotheby’s International Realty rental department advised me on what I needed to know and took care of all the logistics of finding tenants. Wish I had used them from the start!” —Heather, Roslindale
Manage your rental professionally
My firm’s in-house property management company, Boston Property Care is designed specifically for owners of one to three units.
The full-time management team can tailor their services to your specific needs. Broadly, services include:
- collecting and depositing your rents
- handling all interfacing with your tenants
- coordinating maintenance and repairs
- seamlessly partnering with the rental department to re-lease the unit
You decide how much tenant contact you want to have; you can always track rent payments and tenant requests in our online portal.
Landlord and tenant rights and responsibilities
In case you’re currently a landlord——or a tenant——the Massachusetts handbooks may be helpful: