My girlfriend and I are house hacking a duplex in Oak Park, MI. We have one unit ready for rent for the 1st of December and the city inspection is on the 8th of November. Unit details:
-1,500 Sqft Two Floors (200 of that is in an unfinished basement which is clean and includes washer and dryer)
-4 Large bedrooms (Duplexes have huge rooms compared to the older homes in the area)
-1 Full bath, 2 half baths. (New lowflow toilets in all, and all freshly glazed tile, new vinyl tile, frshly glazed tub.)
-New Flooring, new kitchen, stainless steel appliances, granite countertops.
-AC Condensor Unit will be added this spring coming up. Just kind of cold now.
Seeing as this is basically like a brand new high end home (might be a bit much for the area, but we did all the work ourselves and since we are gonna live here for at least a year or two, wanted it to look nice for us, and to attract a good quality tenant). My questions are for anyone with experience in this area and rentals in general in the metro detroit area:
-Is there somewhere else I can look for information on a fair rental price to get a good solid tenant? I have been using craigslist and zillow. I know there are some sites you can pay for the information, but is there a really good one you think is worth paying for? Should I just call a property management company and ask even if I plan on managing it myself? It was at $1100 before and needed a lot of work. We were hoping for $1400-$1500(mortgage payment for us is $1280), and they have to pass the usual 3x rent combined income, full credit and background check (we will use rentprep.com), employment verification, etc.
-Living here now, the city seems pretty safe with low crime. I would consider this a C neighborhood, is this a good assessment? The front and rear doors have have Security Bar doors, but I don't know if it's because of how the city used to be. The state police are nearby, as is a high school and nice park. Would putting up a security system be needed?
-Any other experiences, good or bad with renting in Oak Park?
Yeah OP is about a C IMO. Just Use Rent O meter for free once and price towards the upper range of the spectrum if the unit is nice.
I would use Rent Range. Zillow uses a simplistic data feed from Rent Range. I recall the basic Rent Range report is just a few bucks (read less than $10) and gives you lots of statistics about the range of rents in your area for your product type and categories of tenants (e.g. Section 8 is pulled out separately)
Thanks for the response guys! I'll probably pull a report of both and see which ends up being most accurate.
I think using those rent services to determine the amount to rent your duplex for is going to be tough in Oak Park as there are very few of them. I pulled comps for 1200 SF and updated homes for rent. The rent range is 1200-1500. But keep in mind, these are mostly single family houses. I did see a side by side duplex that just rented in June that was renovated in 2017 for $1350.
I can send you the comps if you want to see them. PM me.
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