I'm interested in learning more about renting rooms in New York City. I have a newly renovated private house with modern finishes and with two floors. I'd love to connect with someone with experience in this market to learn more about:
- best practices for finding the right tenants
- process for navigating the court system if a tenant doesn't pay rent
- finding appropriate tenants (maybe graduate students)
Best practices for sorting through tenants are always to run a full credit check and background check. I like using Cozy for this.
I also require income verification (i.e. W-2, paystubs, etc.) as well as employer, personal and previous landlord references to call.
Evictions are a bit tough in NYC. Especially now! But let's cross that bridge when you get there (hopefully never!)
Where in NYC is the property located?
@Alexander Szikla thanks Alex!
@Alexander Szikla The property is in Brooklyn in the Flatlands/East Flatbush neighborhood.
Hi Krystal, evictions are one of the downsides of renting out to tenants in New York. However, you may mitigate these risks by asking for more documentation and calling them for a quick interview. Here is a list of documents I tend to ask for:
Photo ID (Passport or Driver's License or State ID)
Most Recent Tax Return
Most Recent W-2/1099 (If Independent Contractor)
3 Most Recent Bank Statement (Showing Maximum Liquid Assets)
3 Most Recent Paystubs
Student School Schedule and ID (if applicable)
Pet License (if applicable)
Pet Vaccinations Records (if applicable)
Landlord Reference Letter (if applicable)
Proof of Rent Payments (if applicable)
CPA Letter (if applicable)
If they can't provide sufficient documentation for you to approve them as tenants, then it would be better for you to move on to the next applicant. If you're stuck between choosing a few applicants, it may be better to make phone calls and interview them so you understand their situation better.
All the best!
@Krystal C. Honestly, I would NOT rent any rooms right now in NYC. More so in the area you are proposing to. I know the area quite well. It will be impossible to rid of a non payer anytime soon.
@Lewis Tse Thanks!!!
Could you indicate why your preference for rooms, as opposed to the entire home to a family. I'd think that your wear and tear is less than with year long leases. Renting by rooms sounds transient and likely to attract careless tenants who won't care for your property as a family would. Yes, you can luck out and have great roomers, but why risk it. You may have a very valid reason in which advice will be different. I'd rather make less money and rent by the annual lease.
My first and only question is this: have you checked whether room rentals are legal in New York City without requiring permits or certificates of occupancy or filed paperwork with HPD?
There used to be these homes classed as an SRO (single room occupancy). I'm interested to hear her answer to Bob's question. If the room is not legally classed as an SRO, a crooked tenant with malicious intentions can take advantage of your by threatening you to report you to HPD. You won't get more than a slap in the wrist, if any, but why take the risk if you don't have to.