Charleston, South Carolina, is witnessing an increasing demand for rental properties. According to Charleston Regional Business Journal, the city needs approximately 7,500 new rental units to accommodate the population growth in the area. Also, since the rents in Charleston have increased by 1% over the year, you can make a lot of profit from renting a property.
The above statistics might tempt you to become a landlord. But have you evaluated the responsibilities and risks that come with it? As Charleston property managers, we suggest you consider the following factors before you decide to take the plunge.
1) Are You Ready To Take Up Multitasking?
Renting a house involves multiple responsibilities like handling rental expenses, carrying out regular inspections and maintenance, screening tenants, creating lease agreements, and complying with laws. You might regret your decision if you fall short of the experience of handling all these tasks by yourself. We recommend considering all the responsibilities involved in the business before making a decision.
2) Have You Considered All Additional Expenses?
Beginners might not consider unexpected costs and find themselves at financial risks later. To avoid this, you should evaluate additional expenses like mortgage, insurance, taxes, repair costs, utility bills, administration costs, and property management costs, among other expenses. You must also make an effort to earn more than the monthly expenses, or you might end up generating negative cash flow.
3) Do You Have Sufficient Knowledge About Important Housing Laws?
Becoming a landlord requires you to be well versed in all federal, state, and fair housing laws in Charleston. You can hire a local attorney to understand all your legal responsibilities. In South Carolina, it is illegal to retaliate against tenants who complain about unsafe property conditions. If you are confident enough about handling all legalities, you are good to go! Else, talk to an experienced property manager
4) Will You Be Able To Maintain Your Charleston Property Regularly?
Maintenance is inevitable for any rental house. You are responsible for providing a habitable and safe place to your tenants and addressing their maintenance requests promptly. You may also need to visit the property in emergencies like a leaking roof or broken plumbing. If you already have a different full-time job, can you find enough time from your busy schedule to maintain your property? Pondering on this question can help you decide whether you are ready to become a landlord.
5) Can You Afford Vacant Units For A Long Time?
You might assume that your property will attract a larger pool of potential tenants but you can’t overlook the reality of facing prolonged vacancies sometimes. Even if your property is in a good location, you can’t guarantee that it will get rented quickly. You will have to consider the cost of vacancies for a certain period. So, make sure the scarcity of tenants will not change your decision to rent the property. Have enough savings to cover the cost of unforeseen vacancies.
6) If You Live Out-of-State, How Will You Manage Your Charleston Property From A Distance?
Often property owners decide to rent their house when they move out of the city or state. While it can keep your property functional and habitable, it also brings some challenges. Especially if you are moving out for a new job, it might be difficult for you to attend tenant’s calls, look after property maintenance, collect rent, conduct inspections and manage expenses simultaneously. You have to find an effective property management solution that can save you the time and money you might waste in traveling.
Becoming a landlord is not as simple as you think. You have to evaluate the responsibilities and risks that are a part of the business. A trusted property manager can help you with this.
Meridian Residential Group is a leading property management company in Charleston that provides all types of rental services in the area. So, if you have decided to be a Charleston landlord and need assistance in managing the rental, we are here to help!
Reach us at Meridian Residential Group for more information.