Renting out properties to students can be another way to generate income. Renting to students can actually be quite easy once some preparations are made. Here are some of the best ways to make renting to students as smooth as possible.
Learn How to Target Your Tenants
Many university student bodies have a reputation for being raucous party-goers. This is an unabashed exaggeration, but the fact remains that some students are more prone to getting rowdy than others.
To avoid attracting the wrong sort of crowd, go as much as you can by word-of-mouth recommendations. If you cannot find a quiet-mannered tenant through networking alone, you can also make stipulations as to who can rent from you.
For instance, writing “Grad students only” or mandating that the students be seniors or older can go a long way towards nipping reckless behavior in the bud. Older students tend to take their studies more seriously and spend more time working instead of messing around.
Be as Specific as Possible on the Lease Agreement
Having a written contract is vastly different from a passing verbal agreement. Lay out everything in the open for the student to sign. You should always make demands plain, such as:
- No pets
- Tenant maintenance responsibilities, such as mowing the lawn
- No more people living there than is on the lease
You could even set out penalties in the lease agreement if need be. For example, if your tenants forget to mow the lawn several months in a row, you can charge them a fine and use the money to hire a lawn service.
Develop a Consistent Plan for Rent Payments
Be very clear about the rent due dates. If you are nervous about tenants not paying on time, you can always get their parents to co-sign the lease. Many students are not yet accustomed to financial responsibility, but their parents should be. When the student cannot pay, you could then contact the parent directly to collect payment.
Protect Yourself from Liability
Having a lawyer review your lease agreement is always a good idea. Separate the landlord's responsibilities and expectations distinctly from the tenants. Also set aside some money in case you are faced with litigation or major repairs.
Documenting the state of the house before and after a tenant is also important. Take plenty of photos, and collect a security deposit from each tenant that can be kept if they fail to maintain the house properly.
Finally, make sure you abide by zoning laws. Single-family zoned areas can only have two unrelated tenants living together, or you could be subject to fines.
With enough care and forethought, your tenants can be easy to manage. Many landlords collect checks and visit the property once or twice a year to assess any regular repairs. If you are interested in finding one of the UBC homes for sale to rent out to students, you can start by visiting our buying page.