Tips for First Time Landlords

Should you take the plunge on a rental property? Experts offer a qualified yes! Investing in a rental property can be profitable, but it’s not without risks. Here are some valued tips we’ve compiled for first time landlords:

Determine if buying an investment rental property is right for you:

Before you leap in, you’ll want to consider whether you have the time, willingness and skill to put into managing a rental. While rental property is considered a passive investment, that doesn’t mean you’re fully passive in managing it. Over the long-term, real estate investments may compare favorably to other long-term investments such as stocks, but the results can vary significantly depending on the circumstances of the region and specific property. You’ll want to consider whether you think you can increase rent payments over time and why the economy surrounding the property would support that, among other issues.

Budget for the unexpected:

As a landlord, you want to save about 20-30% of your rental income for upkeep, maintenance and emergencies. You always underestimate all the different expenses that have a way of coming up and always overestimate just how positive the cash flow is going to be.

Understand how rental law works:

Provincial and local landlord-tenant laws can act like an open manhole cover for rental owners who ignore them. Case in point is tenant security deposits. It’s not as simple as collecting and holding the money. Security deposit laws govern how much time you have to return a security deposit when tenancy ends, less any expenses for cleaning and repair, all of which have to be itemized. Of course, this is only one aspect of the laws surrounding rental property, and there are many others that landlords must know in order to avoid running afoul of them. You’ll want to be familiar with rules around eviction, fair housing and other regulatory requirements.


Never Make These Awful Reno Fails

If you're looking to spruce up your home, the Property Brothers have some advice for you on what you definitely don’t want to do.

"One thing that I do see a lot — and it looks terrible when you're trying to sell the house, too — is when people paint their cabinets in their kitchen," Drew shared. "If you just come in with a latex paint and paint it — think of how much use a door gets and then it just starts to get scratched and starts to slough off, and it looks terrible.”

"If you're getting inspiration online, make sure you're following somebody who is a professional who knows what they're doing," Johnathan said. He also added that you shouldn't reach out to him on social media asking whether or not it's ok to take out a wall in your home. "Like, if you are tweeting me that question, you should not do any structural work at all," he said.

The Scott brothers recommend getting professional help when it comes to the big stuff. "Anytime it involves something that requires a skilled professional or permits, whether that's electrical plumbing structure, those are things you really want to have done by a professional," said Jonathan.

- Never Make These Awful Reno Fails courtsey of


Instant Curb Appeal

If you’re thinking of selling your house, or just want to update your space, making improvements to your home’s curb appeal is a great place to start! Unlike a pricier bathroom renovation or kitchen redesign, there are lots of easy ways you can boost your home’s curb appeal on a budget. Here are some helpful tips to get you started:

- One of the most impactful ways to boost curb appeal is to add some fresh greenery and flowers. Use plants to accentuate and frame key visual points, like windows and entryways, and if you don’t have room for a standing planter, hook up a hanging one.

- Your front door is the most visible, eye-catching feature on the exterior of your home. Fixing it up and repainting it is a project that can easily be done in an afternoon.

- If you already have a sconce or hanging pendant by your front door, replace it with something a bit more fun and fresh. Clean off all cobwebs and debris around outdoor light fixtures, which will instantly make the space appear more bright and clean.

- Make a point of clearing out your gutters regularly. While you’re up there, scrub or pressure-wash the exterior of your gutters so they look bright, clean, and refreshed.

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