Renting spare rooms or even whole houses has long been an attractive way for homeowners to turn their properties into sources of income. Then, the coronavirus came along, shaking up every aspect of society, including the housing market.
In 2021, it can be hard for any landlord, new or old, to guess what the future holds. Looking for guidance on renting out your home in a post-pandemic world? Consider the following:
More People Are Looking to Buy, Not Rent
Although vaccination has led to the loosening of coronavirus restrictions, the effects of the pandemic are still being felt. One of the biggest ways this has impacted the housing market is by inspiring people to seek new accommodations.
In search of spacious quarters where they can work from home while also keeping their distance from potential infection, many are currently looking at becoming homeowners themselves. As a result, landlords in 2021 have to work hard to make themselves stand out. If someone asks “Should I rent or buy a house?” you, as a landlord, need to provide compelling reasons for them to choose the former.
To do this, you may want to consider lowering your rent costs in order to better meet the needs of people whose finances have suffered during the pandemic. You should also highlight any features your property has that make working from home convenient. Also, be sure to give tenants plenty of space, so they feel safe. Highlighting the differences between your property and rentals in more cramped urban apartment buildings can be a big help.
Now is Not the Time to Enforce Evictions
One of the hardest ways coronavirus has hit landlords is the institution of eviction freezes by local governments. In many cases, this has led to declining rental incomes by forcing landlords to provide housing to tenants even when they can’t afford to pay for it. Worse, that means that valuable property space that could be rented out to paying tenants is occupied.
Fortunately, many such government measures are in the process of being lifted, meaning that landlords can soon get back to business as usual. It also means that many tenants are also able to work more consistently again, which means that even those that struggled to pay their rent recently may be in a much better position to do so. In any case, landlords in 2021 should resist the urge to enforce evictions and instead focus on alternative options, such as negotiating payment plans.
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Why? Because even though eviction freezes are lifting, public opinion is still very much on the side of the tenants, not the landlord. Being too quick to evict someone in the shadow of the coronavirus pandemic is simply bad PR, and could end up negatively affecting your reputation among potential future tenants.