I’m purchasing my first duplex and inheriting what appears to seem like reliable tenants. This couple has lived on the property for 8 years. They rent a 2/2 with Brand new kitchen and bath for $800 in Audubon, NJ. Apartment can be rented for 1k. Should I raise the rent? If so, is $900 too much?
I'm in Audubon too :). A 2 bed around here now averages around $1,000+ from what I can see. If the tenants are reliable, it's up to you. Give them forewarning but a 2 bedroom for $800 is low for the area, especially if it's upgraded.
I’m new so take my comment with that grain of salt. But could you possibly get them to sign an extended 2-3 lease and put money normally for vacancy aside?
I suggest talking to an attorney regarding the rent increase. I've been taught that 3 to 5% is "normal". I've also been taught that if a landlord increases the rent too much, the tenant can file a complaint for constructive eviction (aka self-help eviction) which is illegal. Maybe you can come to a viable compromise with the tenants, but be sure to cover yourself legally. This is not legal advice, I'm a Realtor and landlord.
Also, be sure their income qualifies them for the new rent amount.
Kelly "Triplex Lady" Rathbone