I am appauled at some of the responses your recieved. Just because one person says not to rent does not mean it is not for you. That is what the bulk of the investors are doing right now, buying and renting out the property so someone else is paying their rent.
Rental property is not for everyone. And yes, if you do not want to do it yourself (and I am one of those) then using a property manager is worth the investment. Mott is right, do your research and make sure that the manager you are using is qualified to manage your property.
Most property managers work this way: you sign a management agreement with them. They list and promote your property. once they find a qualified rentor based on YOUR specifications, you sign off on the tenant. In Florida, it is usually 1/2 of the first months rent is the fee for setting up and finding a tenant. then for 10-12% of the rent, they collect the rent, manage any issues, pay any services that are needed, i.e. pool and lawn etc... If the tenant defaults, the manager handles all of the notices and procedures involved to either collect or evict.
Unfortunately, rentals are not for everyone and you have to decide if it is for you. Don't let some nay sayer complicate things by discouraging you if it makes sense and you ahve done your homework. Use a local realor and do your homework. It iwll save you a round of headaches later on.
Rentals can be a headache if you dont do it right ( and sometimes even if you do) but the rewards can outweigh the headaches.
You've got several good answers.
Rental rates are as high as they have been in recent times and there are MANY people looking for property to lease. Screen your potential tenants thoroughly and get a proper security deposit along with advance rent too.
Contact a LOCAL Real Estate Pro, and interview a few of them.
The broker/agent can provide you with a RENTAL ANALYSIS to help you determine a fair monthly rate. Ask too much and the house may sit on the market with no takers. Ask too little and you may wind up with an unqualified tenant.
By all means, VERIFY, VERIFY, VERIFY....; Employment, Income, Past Rental History, Background and anything or everything else.
WATERWAY REALTY, REALTORSÂ®
Second, you can't rent the house for more than the market value of similar rentals in the area that have already rented. The cost of maintenance, mortgage, insurance (you know your homeowners policy probably won't cover the rental, right?), utility company deposits (landlords normally have to pay them!), and painting and cleaning between tenants are all quite expensive, but unfortunately you almost certainly won't be able to cover all those expenses with your rent. So this project will operate at a loss, probably for the first few years.
Third, you don't need a real estate agent. There are plenty of how-to books out there that cover most of what you'll need to know, and there are countless websites with tricks, tips, and legal guidance. And that's good, because most real estate agents are not "rental experts," despite their claims (listing rental properties when the sales market tanks is not the same as being an expert in the rental market).
So my advice? Don't do it. And if you're going to ignore my advice, don't do it with a real estate agent. Google "Land O' Lakes Management Company" and find a reputable management company to handle all of it for you (they'll charge you 6-10% a month plus a month's rent to find a tenant), and be ready to abandon your emotional attachment to the property.
Really, I wish you luck. This sort of thing isn't easy to do.
I hope I've answered your question. If you need additional information or would like to speak to me regarding your property, please don't hesitate to call
Sharon Smythe, Realtor
Home Encounter, LLC