A Guide for Involuntary Landlords

Can’t sell your home and have to rent it out? The pros offer a few tips.

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• Make prompt repairs, especially to furnaces and other necessary appliances and fixtures. Think about it: Could you live without running water for three days?

• Follow your state's guidelines for entry into a rented dwelling. Most states require at least a 24-hour notice before a tenant is required to allow their landlord to enter their rented dwelling. There's no incentive for your renters to have the house in showing condition, but communication can go a long way toward improving the relationship. Have a formal, written agreement about showing the house with rules that benefit both parties. If the tenant doesn't want you to show it on Sundays, consider honoring that request if they agree to step out with a day's notice other times.