Steps to take right after closing on a Rental Property?

7 Replies

Hello all, going to look at a 2 family property that I am very interested in. Just curious, once closing on a property what are some important steps or tasks that should be completed asap? I just want to be ready/prepared before I finally do find a property and close. I have been doing a ton of research, but still feel I do not know much and I am a bit nervous about pulling the trigger on a property.

Hi Eric

I'm in a similar position and will be closing on my first property on Monday.  However my in-laws have done this for a long time and are coaching me along.  Here are some items I'm aware of for steps between the closing and getting a renter.  

* In the city I'm in you have to get (or transfer from previous owner) a Certificate of Occupancy.  This can require an inspection depending on how long it's been since the last certificate was approved.   The inspection has to be done by the city inspector and in some cases they can demand expensive fixes.  Once this is granted, again in my city you have to register the home as a rental.  

* From there you have to market the property, say on Craigslist

* Then when you show the property it's good to have a rental application and a credit application.  Open an account with someone like to do credit reports.

* You'll need to come up with a water tight lease, and if the house was built before 1978 you'll need a lead disclosure form and booklet.  Also you'll need to generate a checklist for them to fill out when they move in.

* Also security deposits cannot mix with your every day bank account, so you'll need an account you can put the security deposit in where it can sit as long as required until the renters move on. 

I'd suggest to read a lot of the Landlord blogs on BP.   

These are what come to mind as of now.  I'll learn more in the coming few weeks.

-Jon Q

I'll add to the list.

1 - install a lock box with the master key inside. This will save you heart ache from lock outs.

2 - know your lease inside and out, then enforce it.

3 - check for leaks under every sink.

Is the property in Brooklyn? I just closed on a rental property here a few weeks back and brought in a couple of new tenants and things are going fine so far. But there are definitely questions I wished I'd asked at the beginning of the process that would have saved me some annoyances along the way. Send me a message if you have questions, I learned a thing or two.

If you are new to landlording, learn about the people side of the business. I recommend the book Landlording by Leigh Robinson. You can find the 9th edition online (Amazon, Abe Books, etc.) rather inexpensively and it is just as good as the more expensive current 11th edition. It has practical advice and is quite comprehensive.

Also, introduce yourself to the neighbors. Assure them that you are a good property manager and are careful about who you select as tenants. Give them your business card and ask them to contact you if any problems arise, any time day or night.

Marcia thank you but a business card? I don't have a business card or company. I thought that is not necessary

Connect/transfer all utilities under new owner. Good luck!

If it is occupied, my first step is to check smoke & Co alarms. Install any missing hand/guard rails. Make sure all locks actually lock. Anything safety related. Introduce yourself to your new tenants & tell them where to send rent checks!

My next steps (being in Minnesota/North Dakota) would be to make it as energy efficient as possible, insulate!! Whether I pay the heat or tenants do, this pays for itself fast!

 The rest of the posts are great advice so I won't repeat what's been said. Al Williamson's 3 steps are great advice!!

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