Having an exit strategy in place is always a good idea when you acquire a new rental property. That way, when the time comes to sell, you already have an idea of how you’re going to proceed. But what about all the other stuff that goes along with selling? Namely, all the things that need to be done before the property is even listed.
Here’s what needs to happen before you sell:
- Talk to your tenants. If you’re firm in your decision to sell, go ahead and talk to your tenants. Give them a heads up that you plan to sell, and see if they’re interested in buying it. Chances are they won’t be, but it’s worth a shot. If they’ve still got time on their lease, let them know that there will likely be people coming around to inspect, repair, and clean up the property. Potential buyers will also be interested in visiting the property. Keeping them in the loop about your plans and what’s going on in the weeks or months leading up to the sale will help dispel any negativity associated with the process, plus you’ll need them on your side to keep things clean and tidy after the property is listed. If their lease is nearly up, though, it may be worth it to simply wait until they’ve moved out.
- Asses the property’s true value as a rental. Before listing, you also need to determine the property’s true value. Gather up all the financials from the past couple of years – income received, expenses paid – and be ready to share this if the new buyer is another investor. They’ll want to know exactly what the property is bringing in before they make their decision.
- Get your property inspected. While most buyers will opt to do their own inspection, it doesn’t hurt for you to have one done as well before the property goes on the market. That way, you are alerted to any major issues or repairs that must be done and can handle them accordingly.
- Clean it up. Nothing shows worse than a dirty house. If you want to net top dollar for your place, it needs to be pristine. This may mean just having a deep clean done by a pro, or it may mean a complete makeover with fresh paint and new flooring. Either way, the end result should be your property looking its absolute best.
- Find an agent and list it. You’ve made it! The last step to listing your rental property is to find an agent, preferably one who specializes in working with investors. They can help you determine an appropriate list price and work with you throughout the selling process to ensure that you get the best price possible.