If you want to rent out your house in Windsor-Essex, there is a lot of information you need to know first, and I have some great advice ready to help you make the most of your rental property.
There are two main ways to find tenants - on your own, or with the help of a REALTOR like myself:
There are some great ways to advertise your rental property on your own, like through Kijiji, but be ready to deal with a lot of people inquiring about the home, some of which may not be serious inquiries and some may even be part of a scam. Be cautious of prospective tenants that offer you something that sounds too good to be true.
A licensed REALTOR can help you rent out your property, with assistance for you on pricing, advertising, showing the property, screen applicants, and documentation. If you don’t think you want to handle finding a tenant yourself, or just want a professional to take care of it for you, get a REALTOR to take care of it for you.
Generally, advertising at least two months prior to the property becoming available is the best way to get tenants in time and avoid having the property sit empty.
There are a number of things to ask for as part of the screening process to find the right tenant. Among the things to ask for should be:
First and last month’s rent
Confirmation of Employment letter
Previous addresses/landlord names and contact information
Past Employment details
Details about who will be occupying the property
Details about pets
This can vary greatly depending on which part of Essex County you’re renting a property in, what features it has, what type of property it is (house, duplex, apartment, etc.), and many other factors. For more information on how to price your rental property, talk to a licensed REALTOR.
Your lease is a document that outlines your relationship with the tenant, including cost of rent, dates of the lease, individual rules, the end of the lease, etc. A lease is normally for a period of twelve months, after which the tenant is considered ‘month-to-month’, at which time they are required to give sixty days notice before leaving the property.
There are a number of rules that are spelled out by the laws in the Province of Ontario that you need to be aware of if you are going to be a landlord:
You can refuse a potential tenant because they have pets, but you can’t evict one for having pets.
You can increase the cost of rent once every twelve months by an amount of up to the Consumer Price Index (CPI) for that year. This applies to buildings built more than twenty years ago - for buildings newer than that, you can increase the rent as much as you want with ninety days notice using the proper form.
A landlord can enter a property to repair and perform maintenance (either with twenty-four hours notice or in an emergency), and you have the right to show the unit to prospective tenants/buyers with appropriate notice.
You do not have the right to move back into a property during the term of a lease. If the tenant is month-to-month, you have to provide sixty days notice to them, and only you or a family member can be the ones moving in, not another tenant.
If you have an existing lease, you may not evict the tenant in order to sell the property to somebody. The lease would transfer to the new owner, but the tenant remains the legal occupant of the building. In the case of a month-to-month tenant, you must provide sixty days notice that the buyer will be moving in.
These are just a few of the things you have to know as a landlord in terms of your responsibilities - you can find more information about this here.