11 Steps to Renting Your Own Investment Property in the Greater Toronto Area
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11 Steps to Renting Your Own Investment Property in the Greater Toronto Area


At Buttonwood Property Management we
think it’s important for real estate investors and tenants in the Greater Toronto Area
to be informed. For property investors in particular
it’s important to follow the industry’s best practices to increase
your returns and avoid headaches. Today I’m going to
take you through our 11 step guide to renting your own
investment property. Before we get started something to think
about for those of you who will be renting a property that first functioned as your home. Beware that
you might find lots of conflicting emotions about entrusting your past home to
a tenant. Homes carry a lot of emotional weight, but as
soon as you decide you’re going to rent this property make the switch in your head to that of a property investor. This is your investment and you need to
think like an investor. It goes without saying
that if you’re getting into the real estate rental business you need to familiarize yourself with
Ontario rules regulations and guidelines set forth by
the residential tenancies act and Landlord Tenant Board so that you
know you’re operating within the guidelines of the
governing body’s. No need to be an expert, but no excuse not to know the rules that govern things
like fire code and what constitutes discriminatory
rental practices. Here’s Buttonwood’s 11 step
guide to reading your own property: Step 1: The Property Inspection Start off by inspecting the property
so that you’re aware of this scope of the work required to make it rental ready. This is the time to test appliances,
electrical and plumbing for any issues. Cosmetic
upgrades happen now to like cleaning or replacing
carpet, painting and getting all general handy
work done. Be sure to work with certified
professionals to ensure a quality job gets done on the first go. Step 2: Photographing Your Property If this is a luxury property you may
want to consider professional staging prior to a photo-shoot, but generally a
good deep clean and a sunny day are all you need to
prepare. Use an 18 millimeter lens on your camera, using a fish-eye lens will make the
place look bigger than it is and this will only turn off would be
tenants when they see the space in person. Step 3: Assessing Fair Rental Value Setting the monthly rental amount for
your property is key to finding a tenant quickly, to
set the rent you need to do your research look at comparable properties in your area that are currently listed or were
recently on the rental market MLS, Kijiji, Craigslist and Viewit.ca are your go to resources for this. Be
sure to use current or recent data as the rental market
can swing quickly and is affected by seasonal trends. To
rent the unit quickly price it right from the get-go having to
drop the price after a month without interest is a costly proposition. Step 4: Writing The Rental Ad Keep your perspective tenant in mind as you write and try to remain objective, flowery
writing in a rental ad won’t win you any awards. List not just the nice features a tenant would appreciate in the home or condo itself but also describe the greater community and its amenities. Include a Walk Score,
school ratings, access to major highways… So a
prospective tenant can imagine themselves in their
day-to-day life in this property. Remember you’re selling the idea of a home, a life style and a community. Step 5: Listing Your Property. When your listing your ad keep your perspective tenant in mind as you choose were to list. If your properties in a hip downtown
area, listings through Craigslist and Kijiji may be enough but for a family home in
the suburbs consider MLS. It can be time consuming
to setup accounted with various listing services, pay fees where required and upload your
photos. But at the end of the day you need to
ensure your audience is seen your ad. Don’t just wait around
for candidates to call, keep up the market research, are
compatible properties renting before yours. If so, what sets there’s apart? what
questions and reactions are you getting from candidates on the phone? Use this information to improve your ad.
If the property is currently tenanted be sure the current tenant is on board
and cooperative with your efforts to find a new one. Step 6: Following Up With Leeds Prompt answers to interest in your
property is key. Return emails and phone calls and
arrange for showings as quickly as you can. Know that
candidates and providing you with loads of information in conversation and through their rental applications. A few tells that might give you pause. Were they late for the showing appointment? Were their applications submitted with
missing information? These details might inform what the
rest of your relationship will look like, should you choose them as tenants. Step 7: Credit, Reference and Rental History Checks & Employment Verification This is an absolutely crucial step. You must verify the information your candidate has given you. Be thorough. Be sure to place those
reference calls. Have the credit report certified. Step 8: Preparing Your Lease for Signature. Once you’ve found your ideal tenant it’s time to draw up and sign your lease
agreement with them. There are many boilerplate leases
available online that you can download for personal use. If you’re using a boilerplate be sure to
add any details you feel need to be spelled out. Some standard issue leases come with
additional provisions that you can opt in or out of. Be sure to read
these through in case they apply to you and your property. Step 9: Payment of First and Last Months Rent. In Ontario first and last months rent is standard
payment to the landlord prior to moving in. It is preferable to receive certified
checks for both, but at a minimum get a certified check
for last month’s rent. While not enforceable request post dated
checks for the term of your lease it’s a good psychological commitment for
your tenant to make. Step 10: Verify Insurance Coverage. Many don’t think to ask let alone verified but ensuring the tenant has tenant insurance is crucial. You as the property owner
also need to ensure you have an adequate landlord policy. Be sure coverage is in place for all
parties by the moving date. Step 11: Move in Inspection and Key Handover. The easiest way to do this is to take pictures or to video your
walk through with your new tenant. Document any issues you may encounter in your walk through. Don’t forget to verify the expiry date
and test your carbon monoxide and smoke detectors. If batteries are
required make sure you install new ones prior to the move in date and agree on who is going to do the
yearly ongoing tests and battery changes after that.
Congratulations! You’ve rented your property you’re a landlord and your tenant has a new home. Be sure to nurture your
relationship with your tenant and best of luck!

One Comment

  • Buttonwood Property Management

    Are you thinking of renting your own investment property?
    Our 11 Steps Guide can assist you with this process.

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