Owning and renting out property can be a great investment. However, landlords need to be careful or risk losing money rather than making it. Here are some common mistakes made by landlords in Missouri and elsewhere that can end up costing them a pretty penny.
Mistake number one: not properly screening prospective tenants. Yes, screening can be burdensome, but it is worth it. Without performing a proper screening, how can one know if a potential tenant is responsible and in a good enough financial place to afford the rent? Failing to take time to vet a tenant often results in the need to evict that individual down the line, which is not an easy or inexpensive process.
Mistake number two: failing to get the right kind or amount of insurance coverage. Things happen, property breaks down over time and tenants cause damage, who wants to pay the full cost of repairs out of pocket? Insurance is not something landlords will want to skimp on because it will only cost them more in the long run.
Mistake number three: failing to maintain the property. Landlords must keep their properties in good shape. When problems arise and repairs are needed, they must fix them in a reasonable time frame. Failing to so can result in a tenant taking his or her landlord to court.
Mistake number four: not understanding landlord-tenant law. Failing to learn what one is and is not allowed to do as a landlord will only land one in hot water at some point. Tenants do have rights, and they can take legal action if a landlord is not respecting those rights.
Landlords have challenging jobs. Thankfully, some aspects of the job they do not have to manage alone. Legal counsel can assist landlords in Missouri in several ways. From contract writing to dealing with difficult or angry tenants and everything in between, an experienced attorney can help property owners do what is right for them and what is best for their investment.