Characteristics of a Residential Rental Agreement

If you are renting property for the first time, you may need a residential rental agreement but be uncertain as to what needs to go into it, or how to go about finding the right contract for your needs. There is no one single rental contract; these contracts are about as unique as the properties they are connected to. It is easy to fall into the trap of just using any contract, since they have many common elements but this can be a big mistake that you will pay for dearly later.

It is crucial that you spend some time reading the contract that you are going to use, or even better read several of them before you choose one. It is also crucial that you check with your state laws, there are many states that require some things to be listed in this contract and you do not take the time to do that you could not only be violating the laws of your state, you could be putting yourself in a bad position should there be any disputes later.

All rental agreements start with the same basic information, this information will include the contact information for both parties, as well as all the pertinent information about the actual rental including its location, how much it is being rented for and when rent is due. Any applicable deposits will also be listed here, as well as the length of the term of lease, usually one year.

Each rental contract is drawn up differently but there will be two other sections beside the general information section. One section will deal with the terms and conditions of the rental and the other with the rights and responsibilities of both the tenant and the landlord. The terms and conditions is the place where you will put any of your own stipulations about the rental. This can range from anything such as whether pets are allowed to whether the tenant has access to all the property or even things such as painting or repairing the home.

In the section about rights and responsibilities this is where things such as your right of access and the notice you must give are listed. This is also where you will find sections on terminating the lease and about any damage that is done to the property. There is also a section that covers your tenants’ rights as well.

Your residential rental agreement is a legally binding contract that is designed to spell out the details of the contract as well as provide protections for both tenant and landlord, it is essential that you make sure that the contract is drawn up correctly to ensure that it is admissible in a court of law and will not bring grief back on you another day.

Landlords: How to Determine the Rental Amount for Your Property

I want to introduce several resources where a real estate investor or property owner can determine what rent you can charge for your investment property. The three most popular websites available for this purpose are Zillow.com, Rentometer.com, and Craig’s List.

Zillow is the most popular and respected so we will start there. Go to Zillow.com and put in the address of your property and then click “search”. Click on the word “rent” or “Zestimate”, both will give you rent estimates. The word Zestimate (rent estimate by Zillow) should pop up with the rental amount and the range Zillow thinks the property may rent for.

We know Zillow is not perfect. Zillow uses computer models and they are basing their rent Zestimate upon averages in the area that have similar characteristics of your property, i.e. square footage, similar number of beds, bathrooms, etc. Again, no computer model will be perfect but generally Zillow is accurate. You will need to be realistic about the property and observe its characteristics. If your house is a multi-unit building or if your house is somehow different than every other property in the neighborhood, the Zestimate may not be accurate.

The second site is rentometer.com. Once on the site you enter the property address. In this site they ask for how many bedrooms are in the property. You can also provide other information that could make the rent estimate more accurate. Once you have entered all information click “submit”. The site will give you a similar analysis to Zillow and a range they think the rent may fall in.

Another good way to get rent comparable is Craig’s List. Craig’s List has had issues in the past involving scammers and fraud. But as far as determining rental amounts it is fairly accurate. On this site, you would perform a slightly different search. You would go on Craig’s List for your area and go to “Apt/Houses” section and type in your town. Or, if it’s a development, you might type in the development name. You then enter the number of bedrooms and/or bathrooms. At that point many house or apartments will appear in your search for rent. You then need to review them and see if any of them are similar and look like your property so that you are comparing apples to apples.

Keep in mind these are estimates and you will have to test the market to really know what your property can rent for per month. We do not recommend that you try to “go high” and figure you can negotiate down. This rarely works to in today environment. Generally, if you over price your property hoping to get more rent it will just get ignored and you will not get any traffic or potential renters.

I better strategy is to use the above resources to get a close estimate of your property will rent for and then price your property slightly lower. This should attract a lot more tariff and may be result in a quick move in versus over pricing and the property sitting vacant for weeks or months.

Apartment Rental Tips – Choosing a Neighborhood in Los Angeles

Los Angeles living is exciting, fast-paced, and exceedingly diverse. Life in one part of the city can be a striking contrast, bearing no resemblance to life elsewhere in LA. The apartment rental process can be one that is fraught with difficulty, if only due to the huge number of choices available. When you start the apartment rental process in Los Angeles, you’ll quickly get overwhelmed because there are well over 100 distinct, named neighborhoods in the city. Which ones are hot? Which ones are dangerous? Which are kid friendly, and which have the best nightlife? Apartment rental is stressful enough in Los Angeles, so we’re going to bring you our picks for the best neighborhoods in LA for apartment rental today.

Venice Beach. If beach living is the life for you, look no farther than Venice Beach. Life here is affordable, diversified, and colorful. It’s clear when you visit Venice Beach that the free spirit that attracted so many artists of yesteryear, including Doors frontman Jim Morrison, survives today. Life in Venice Beach is populated by street performers, wandering musicians, craft vendors, and of course the hip bohemians who make Venice Beach their home. Variety is the spice of life here.

Westwood. Westwood is home to UCLA, so it features plenty of students, with the requisite affordable student housing, bars, and nightlife. Life in Westwood is fast and happening, but if you’re young and looking for a place you can truly unwind, and don’t mind fighting for parking, then Westwood may be the place for you.

Silver Lake. Silver Lake is a young, hip neighborhood characterized by organic cafes, dive bars, artsy boutiques, coffee shops, and easy-going, friendly, trendy people. Its proximity to downtown, Hollywood, and other great night spots around the city makes this an ideal spot for someone who likes to keep all of their options open.

Los Feliz. Once a mecca for the artists and indie crowd, Los Feliz has evolved into an upscale neighborhood attracting trendy residents looking for a quiet place to call home and retreat from the bustle of the city. The Los Angeles apartment rental prices are understandably rising as the neighborhood improves, but it’s still possible to find affordable digs in Los Feliz.

Midtown. A true melting pot of the city, Midtown is home to wealthy city-dwellers, working-class families, students, and more. Home to Koreatown, this centrally located hub is a great place to live if you always want to be connected to the action, but be warned, being centrally located means being in the middle of the city’s infamous traffic congestion, so plan accordingly.

Tips to Consider Before You Opt for a Short Term Rental

If you are going to take a vacation in the near future, we suggest that you consider a short-term rental service. You will have a lot of options to choose from. Usually, these homes have all that you need to spend your vacation comfortably. Read on to find out more.

Nowadays, economic circumstances have lead people to opt for short-term rentals. Aside from individuals, companies have made changes to how they work. In other words, their employees have to go to different sites from time to time. In the same way, tenants have similar needs to meet.

You can find a lot of letting agencies that offer short-term rentals. This helps tenants find an accommodation that has all the required facilities. Normally, this type of residence has a high standard, which means they have all the stuff you need on a regular basis. The only things you need are your clothes and suitcases.

Now, if you are going to move to another city, make sure you do your homework first. This will help you opt for the best area. If you are moving to another city on work, we suggest that you choose a rental home that is located in that city. This is important to consider because you need a lot of amenities when you are working in a city.

If you are going on a vacation, on the other hand, then your best bet is to find a rental apartment that is located away from the city. No matter which option you opt for, make sure you consider your budget.

Once you have chosen an area, you may want to search for short-term rental service in your desired area. Take a look at different apartments and once you have found one, find out how much it costs. Usually, short-term rentals don’t come with a lot of restrictions. You can get a discount if you are going to stay there for a longer period of time.

If you are an employee, we suggest that you consider company rentals. Usually, they work the same way private rentals work, but they are a bit different from regular rentals. The competition between these providers is stiff as they want to get the best deal. Employees tend to prefer company lets as they have a lot of amenities.

Some short-term rentals are in touch with companies that need shorter lets from time to time. They can be a good option, especially if you have a company.

If you are a leisure traveler, you may want to go for short-term rentals. The reason is that these rentals are properly furnished. They have amazing kitchens that will save you a good deal of money as you won’t have to eat out. Typically, the rental price includes all the charges.

Nowadays, short-term rentals are quite popular. If you are going to move to another city for work or want to go on a vacation, you may want to consider a short-term rental service. Hope, this article will help you choose one easily.

Make the Most of Rental Property Listings With These Tips

Anyone who hunts for rental homes know the hard work that goes in finding the apt property. Apart from looking for properties, one has to find the right choices depending on needs. This can be time consuming process, and you may have a lot of hassles to deal with. Thankfully, with the internet, things are now simpler. A number of websites are now offering free rental property listing, coupled with a number of benefits. In this post, we will talk of a few aspects that matter the most along with a few tips on how you can choose the right portal.

Knowing an online property search

Real estate portals have found immense success in recent times, and there are quite a few choices. Apart from buying and selling, a number of sites also focus on the rental properties. You can check for homes and apartments, within your requirement range and budget, and all of these things can checked and sorted in a few clicks. Typically, most of the websites will have their filters for cities, area, type of property and pricing, and you can check other aspects, as well. Make sure that you look for more than a few options and sort them based on the pros and cons.

How to choose a website?

As mentioned, there are a number of sites that offer rental property listings, but you need to be extra careful while choosing one. Make sure that the website is easy to use and there are some good choices for every city or area. You don’t want to use a website that’s complicated and doesn’t offer the right features. Also, you should check if the website connects you to the landlord or property owner directly, which can help in getting rid of the agents and ensures transparency in the deal. You can also find reviews and feedback about a portal from other users and tenants, which can come quite handy.

Things to check

First things first, you have to list down the pros and cons of a property before making the choice. Short listing a few options is pretty easy, and once you are done with that, you can spend the weekend finding the right one. While talking to the landlord, you should ask him for the final rent for the month, and if there are any additional or monthly expenses and recurring maintenance fees, it should be mentioned in detail. You might also want to see the terms and conditions as mentioned by the landlord, including issues related to repairs and further upkeep. Not all landlords are the same, and therefore, it is always a good idea to have a concrete rental contract with all aspects in writing.

If you can check these aspects, finding the right home shouldn’t be a matter of days. More often than not, people find the right properties within a few clicks. These services are also helpful for landlords, who can expect genuine results and options, especially when they are looking for specific tenants.