Suppose you’ve de-cluttered, spring cleaned, baked cookies for open houses – yet still haven’t found someone to buy your home for the price you believe is reasonable. An alternative course of action may be to rent your Santa Barbara or Montecito home. That will keep the mortgage paid while you wait for the market to work through its correction. What may not have been your first choice can be a logical solution: consider -- even banks are offering homes for rent these days!
If this sounds like a workable plan to consider, the most important step will be finding a well-qualified tenant. Since homes for rent compete with apartment buildings that may offer a host of amenities, well-qualified tenants do have a lot of choices. But keep in mind, you have a house to offer, so why shouldn’t it attract the best tenants?
To protect your investment while earning the highest rents, here are some tried-and-true tips:
Everybody likes a bargain. By offering tenants a bonus for signing your target lease term, you can help keep vacancy rate low and make your property stand out from the other homes for rent in the Santa Barbara area. You can offer one month free (or a partial month) for signing a full year lease. Any number of variations can work: for instance, to encourage renewal you can offer a few hundred dollars off the first month’s rent after the first term.
Maintenance is Important
Some Santa Barbara homes for rent come with the proviso that tenants maintain the property. Their duties can include taking care of the yard, shoveling the walks in winter -- sometimes even cleaning the gutters. If you are a landlord who hires an outside party for those chores, the tenant will have less work to do…increasing the likelihood that he or she will stay longer. More importantly, as the owner of the property, you need to know which items are getting done. You need to be assured that your investment – your home - is being well maintained.
Good as Gold
Qualified tenants are as good as gold, but they need to be cared for. Managing Santa Barbara area homes for rent may not be rocket science – but it is a science. Aside from the day-to-day management of the property, there are national and Fair Housing laws to be observed. Especially if you will not be available to make sure your tenancy is being properly managed, an experienced Santa Barbara property management company can provide the most prudent solution.