Property News You Can Use presented by Harcourts

Before renting your home out or investing in a “buy to let” property, prospective landlords should consider some essential things. 

Being a landlord does not stop when the lease is signed. 

  • It involves effort and commitment. 
  • Not only do the Tenants need to be managed to ensure they abide 
  • By the terms of the lease and look after your investment; 
  • The Landlord must maintain the property well and ensure all bills are paid. 
  • These issues must be actively managed. However, if ignored, it can swiftly get out of control. That said, property has proved to be an excellent investment over time. 
  • Being a landlord can be a richly rewarding way to build legacy wealth for yourself and your family. Every cent earned from a tenant towards the rent goes towards enabling you to grow your wealth through your property. 
  • Property can be an excellent investment, but you must take a long-term view to achieve real value. You also need to be realistic about whether you can afford to be a landlord. 

Ask yourself whether : 

  • The rent will cover your bond, rates, and insurance. 
  • Ongoing maintenance 
  • Have enough to put extra aside when you have a vacancy or an expensive repair. 
  • Unexpected costs will inevitably arise, so ensure you have budgeted the money and time for routine maintenance and emergency repairs. 

Do you have the time? 

  • It takes time and commitment. Once your tenants have moved in, you will need to be able to respond rapidly to their requests and complaints. 
  • Sometimes maintenance issues cannot wait. Good tenants are worth keeping happy, and a quick response is essential to them. At the same time, your property is a significant investment, and you want to minimise potential damage. 
  • Ongoing property management and maintenance require a significant number of hours. They can be difficult if you have a demanding full-time occupation. 

Use professional agents to screen your tenants. 

Getting stuck with a bad tenant can be mentally, emotionally, and financially disastrous. Therefore, do not cut corners when vetting your tenants – thorough credit checks must be done, and all references should be followed up. Strict tenant vetting and monthly management procedures ensure landlords have peace of mind. This equates to their tenants likely to pay their rent on time, every time. 

Harcourts look at more than just a credit score – factors like account payment patterns, nature and age of judgements are also considered when vetting tenants. 

Just as essential is a professionally drawn-up lease that is fair and watertight. A good understanding of South Africa’s landlord-tenant laws is critical. These are governed by the CPA (Consumer Protection Act), the RHA (Rental Housing Act), the Prevention of Illegal Eviction from and Unlawful Occupation of Property Act, and Common Law. 

Should you hire an outside estate agency, like Harcourts, to assist you? 

Managing your rental can be pretty taxing, and it’s best to have a professional agency with skilled and experienced individuals doing the work for you. 

Harcourts Services offered to include: 

  • Property marketing, viewings and tenant vetting include the due diligence of credit and other checks before tenants can move in. 
  • Comprehensive contracts and advice regarding the legal obligations of landlords and tenants. 
  • Prompt attendance to maintenance & management issues that saves you time and money. 
  • Transparent processes, established routines, standardised documentation and regular feedback, maintain high service standards. 
  • On-line accounting system for investment, receipt and payment of all funds. Proactively actioning slow and non-payment by tenants with the involvement of the Landlord. 
  • Harcourts offers all this and more to our landlords. We have a long history and excellent track record built on our experience of what landlords and tenants need. We are very optimistic about the rental market, and our agents are happy to discuss and offer advice where required. We believe that property provides a unique wealth-building opportunity for South Africans, and we want to help you to make that happen. 


≈ ≈ Marsha

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