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Advice for Current and Prospective Landlords

Being a landlord is a full time job. From finding tenants to managing your property, learn what it takes to be a successful landlord.

Landlord To-Do List Before Tenant Move-In
Knowing what to do before a new tenant moves in can make for a smooth transition. Here is a list of ways to prepare.

Sample Rental Unit Condition Checklist
A rental unit condition checklist is used to document the condition of the property two times during tenancy. This sample will show you what to include in your checklist.

Sample Notice of Rent Increase- Month to Month Tenants
If you have a month to month tenant, you can increase their monthly rent as long as you give proper notice. This Sample Rent Increase Form can help you understand how to do it.

What Is a Walk-Through Inspection?
Learn what a walk-through inspection is and why it is important for both landlords and tenants during tenant move-out.

Late Rent and Late Rent Fees
Charging a fee for late rent payments can help persuade tenants to pay on time. Here are some tips for dealing with late rent, partial payments and nonpayment.

Sample New Tenant Checklist
Before you allow a new tenant to move into your property, there are many tasks that you must complete. Here is a sample checklist for landlords to help you prepare for these new tenants.

Reasons Tenants Do Not Move
It is important for landlords to learn the reasons tenants do not move. Here are some factors that keep tenants in their current apartments.

Reasons Tenants Move
There are many factors that can lead to a vacancy at your rental property. Knowing the reasons tenants move could help you avoid one.

When to Collect Rent From Tenants
All tenants should know when the rent is due. Here are some tips about when to collect rent from tenants.

Why You Should Document Condition of Rental Unit
To protect your investment, you should document the condition of each rental unit. This should be done when a tenant moves in and when a tenant moves out.

How to Increase Security at Rental Property
Living in a home that is secure is important to tenants. Here is what you can do to increase security at your rental property.

Sample Notice of Rent Increase- Yearly Tenants
If a landlord wants to increase a yearly tenant's rent, he or she must send the tenant a Notice of Rent Increase. Here is a sample of what to include in this notice.

Records to Keep on Prospective Tenants
The tenants who do not rent your apartment can be just as important as the ones who do.Here is why it is important to keep records on prospective tenants.

How to Collect Rent From Tenants
Your tenants are responsible for paying monthly rent. You are responsible for deciding how you will collect this rent from your tenants.

What Forms of Payment to Accept as Rent
Your lease should clearly state the procedure for collecting rent, including what forms of payment you will accept. From cash to online payments, here are the pros and cons.

Why a Good System for Collecting Rent Is Important
As a landlord, keeping good records is important. This is why it is essential to develop a system for collecting rental payments.

Marketing Costs for Rental Property Vacancy
Even the best landlords can experience a vacancy at their rental property. Learn the marketing strategies that can help you fill this vacancy and the costs involved.

Holding Costs for Rental Property Vacancy
Having a vacancy at a rental property is a common occurrence. Learn the holding costs you are still responsible for despite this vacancy.

Tips for Winterizing Your Property
Taking steps to winterize your property can help keep it functioning smoothly in the winter months. Here are some cold weather tips.

How to Thaw a Frozen Water Pipe
If water has stopped flowing from a faucet at your property, you may have a frozen pipe on your hands. Learn steps you can take to thaw it.

How to Tell if Your Pipes Are Frozen
Do you know how to tell if your pipes are frozen? Learn the signs that can help you spot a frozen pipe before it's too late.

How to Prevent Pipes From Freezing
Cold temperatures can cause the pipes at your property to freeze. Here are some tips on how to keep your pipes warm and prevent this from happening.

How Tenants Can Prevent Pests in Their Property
Keeping pests out of a property is the responsibility of both landlords and tenants. Learn what tenants can do to prevent pests from coming in.

How Landlords Can Prevent Pests in Their Property
Landlords can take steps to control pests in their property. Here are some tips which can prevent vermin from setting up camp in your property.

How Much Can You Charge a Tenant as a Security Deposit?
The maximum amount you can charge a tenant for a security deposit depends on your state. Learn how much you can charge based on the location of your rental property.

5 Prospective Tenant Red Flags
When interviewing prospective tenants, there are certain red flags you should look for. Here are five indicators that an applicant may not be the ideal fit.

5 More Prospective Tenant Red Flags for Landlords
Thoroughly screening tenants can help landlords find the right one for your property. Learn five additional red flags that a tenant may not be the best fit.

How to Verify a Prospective Tenants Income and Employment
Verifying the income and employment of a prospective tenant is a vital step for all landlords. Here are three ways to do it.

Sample Employment Verification Request Form
When you are in the process of screening a tenant, you should send the tenant's employer an Employment Verification Request Form. Here is an example of one.

Common Lease Clauses and Lease Riders
While there are "standard" leases, a lease really needs to be customized to your needs, the needs of your property and needs to comply with state and federals laws. Here are some common clauses and riders you should consider including in your lease.

What Is a Lease?
A lease is a binding contract between two or more people. In a real estate lease, the parties signing the lease are commonly referred to as the landlord and the tenant. Here is what you should know about leases.

The 5 Basics You Must Include in a Lease
There are basic clauses every lease must contain to make it valid. Learn the five things your lease can't be without.

Sample Move Out Checklist
When a tenant moves out of their apartment, you should provide them with a move out checklist so they understand what is expected of them.

The Complete Guide to the Security Deposit
Landlords should always collect a security deposit in addition to the first month's rent. This guide will teach you the proper steps; from collecting the security deposit to returning it to the tenant.

Sample Security Deposit Lease Clause
It is very important to collect a security deposit before a tenant moves into your property. The terms and conditions of the security deposit should be included as a clause in your lease agreement.

Sample Security Deposit Acknowledgment Form
Sending your tenant a form acknowledging you have received their deposit and the bank where it is being held is required in some states. Here is an example of a security deposit acknowledgment.

The Basics of the Security Deposit
There are some basic things every landlord must do before they allow a tenant to move-in to their property. One essential is requiring the tenant to pay a security deposit. Learn why.

5 Reasons You Can Keep a Tenant's Security Deposit
A security deposit is meant to protect you, the landlord. Learn five situations where you keeping a tenant's security deposit may be allowed.

How to Protect Your Right to the Security Deposit
You may not be able to keep a tenant's security deposit if you do not take the right steps. Learn what to do from move-in to move-out to protect the money you are owed.

The Complete Guide to Tenant Screening
Everything you need to know to conduct a thorough tenant screening. The steps to help you find the best tenant for your property.

What Are the Responsibilities of a Landlord?
Do you know what a landlord does? Here is everything you need to know about the roles and responsibilities of a landlord.

Landlord's Responsibilities to Their Tenants
There are certain services a tenant expects their landlord to provide them with. Here are some of the services a landlord is responsible for providing to their tenants.

5 Things You Should Know Before Becoming a Landlord
Learn the good and the bad of becoming a landlord. This can help you determine if the life of a landlord is the right fit for you.

Should You Make Your Property Pet Friendly?
An important decision you will face as a landlord is whether you should make your apartments pet friendly. Learn the benefits, as well as the risks, of allowing your tenants to have pets.

What to Include in Your Pet Policy
Every landlord should have a pet policy regarding their property. A thorough policy can help prevent misunderstandings between you and your tenants and help prevent damage to your property. Learn the important aspects of a pet policy such as the pet deposit and how to clearly state what animals you will allow.

The Roles of a Landlord
Have you thought of a landlord in the role of a Realtor? Detective? Debt collector? Learn the many parts a landlord must play in order to successfully manage their property.

Landlord's Responsibilities to Their Property
A landlord has certain responsibilities. Learn what a landlord's obligations are to their property.

Landlord's Responsibilities to Themselves
Often overlooked are a landlord's obligations to themselves. Learn some of the personal responsibilities a landlord should strive to fulfill.

5 Tips for Setting the Right Rent
Setting the right rent for your property is about finding that perfect price that will attract tenants but also put some money in your pocket. Here are five things to consider when pricing your rental.

Landlord's Responsibilities to Their Community
Fulfilling obligations to their community can help increase a landlord's success. Chances are, when the surrounding neighborhood is thriving, so is the landlord's property. Learn the responsibilities a landlord has to their community.

10 Questions for Prospective Tenants
When screening prospective tenants, there are certain questions you should always ask. These 10 questions will help quickly weed out the applicants who may not be the best fit for your property.

Where to Find Tenants
In order to find tenants, you have to broaden your search. You should advertise your property using many different outlets so that you can reach the greatest number of potential renters. Hopefully, by generating more interest, you will have a larger tenant applicant pool to choose from and you will get your unit rented faster.

Questions You Cannot Ask a Prospective Tenant
Due to the Fair Housing Act and other laws protecting renters, it is illegal to say certain things when screening tenants. Here are the questions a landlord should never ask a prospective tenant.

How to Run a Credit Check on a Prospective Tenant
Selecting the right tenant for your property is no easy feat. A credit check provides information about a prospective tenant's financial history and can be a good indication of whether they will pay their rent on time. Learn how to run a credit check and what it can tell you about a prospective tenant.

6 Property Maintenance Tips That Can Save Landlords Money
Preventative property maintenance can save you money in the long run. A simple fix like changing a battery or cleaning a filter can prevent costly problems in the future. Learn six maintenance tips to keep your rental property in top condition.

How to Select the Right Tenant for Your Property
Not all tenants are created equal. Certain tenants will make your life as a landlord a breeze, while others will make your life a living nightmare. Here are six tips to help you select the right tenant for your property.

Landlord Obligations Under Section 8
Landlords have responsibilities to their tenants. Landlords have additional responsibilities under the Section 8 program. Learn these obligations.

Tenant Obligations Under Section 8
Tenants have obligations to their landlords. Section 8 tenants have additional responsibilities under the Section 8 program. Learn these obligations.

What Are Housing Quality Standards?
What criteria do Section 8 inspectors use to determine if a property is suitable for a Section 8 tenant? Here is what you need to know about HUD's Housing Quality Standards.

Section 8 Inspection FAQs
If you want to make your property Section 8 friendly, you have to be willing to consent to Section 8 inspections. Reading these FAQs will help prepare you for the inspection.

Is Your Unit Rent Reasonable?
Section 8 tenants must live in units that are considered rent reasonable. Here is how a Public Housing Authority determines if a unit is rent reasonable.

How Much Will Section 8 Pay Landlords?
Section 8 has a maximum amount they will pay a landlord for a particular unit. Here is how they determine how much they will pay.

Who Is Eligible to Receive Section 8 Housing?
Section 8 provides tenant-based housing assistance. Learn who is eligible for this housing choice voucher.

Disadvantages of Renting to Section 8 Tenants
Renting your property to a Section 8 tenant can have its disadvantages. Here are are some things to look out for.

Advantages of Renting to Section 8 Tenants
Renting to Section 8 tenants has its advantages. Here are the positives of renting your property to this tenant base.

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