UGANDA, Kampala | Real Muloodi News | For many Ugandans, the dream of becoming a first-time landlord is one they hope to achieve because it is a source of income that can be earned even in retirement.
However, being a landlord is not an easy job, especially for first-time landlords. To help navigate this new territory, experienced landlords recommend that first-time landlords consider several factors before embarking on this investment.
Eliodad Mutagubya, a landlord with over 20 years of experience, advises first-time landlords to consider the affordability of their rental property.
If a property is in prime areas such as Kololo, Nakasero, Bugolobi, Naalya, Mbuya, Muyenga, and Ntinda, not everyone can afford to rent it.
“To rent out your house in these areas you should look for affordability because it’s very rare for [average] Ugandans to rent a house in prime areas, it will be very expensive and hard to pay on time unless he or she has a very good job,” Mutagubya says.
It’s important to be realistic and understand the people who can afford to rent in your area. If unsure, consider hiring a property manager or agent to help with the process.
Josephat Kagimu, a landlord in Seguku, advises first-time landlords to advertise their property to attract potential tenants.
A user-friendly online platform like Real Muloodi Property Network can help landlords list, advertise, rent, and sell their properties securely without a middleman and ensures that the property owner or landlord has full control over the process.
To make sure the advert is effective, ensure that it includes essential details such as price range, location, accessibility, neighbourhood, and safety.
“Normally tenants look for key issues which include price range, location, accessibility, neighbourhood and safety. Make sure you have all those issues in your advert and you must make inquiries before posting,” he says.
Know the Law
Kagimu emphasises the importance of understanding local laws governing tenants and landlords. It’s essential to know what you can and cannot ask for on a rental application.
Once you’ve selected the right tenant, you’ll need to draft a contract for the rental period. The contract should specify the length of the tenancy, maintenance agreements, rules about pets and smoking, and other relevant details.
“Once you have picked the right tenant, it will be okay to revise rules on renting and managing a property. This will involve LC 1 letter, national identity card, the size of the family and how the payments will be done,” Kagima shares.
Kagima adds: “This contract should include details about how long they will rent, what maintenance you will provide and rules about pets and smoking because these are the main issue regarding tenants.”
Since it’s likely the first time drafting a rental document, hiring a legal officer to help with the process can be a wise decision.
“Both you and the tenant must sign off on all documents because this protects both the tenant and landlord from problems which may occur during the rental period,” he says.
Before a tenant moves in, it’s essential to check the condition of the house.
Kagimu recommends that landlords ensure that any appliances are in good working order and provide tenants with a usage guideline or manual for any complicated equipment.
It’s the landlord’s responsibility to ensure that the property is in good condition, even if a property manager is not hired.
Regular maintenance of the property is necessary, and landlords must take charge of it.
Becoming a landlord is an investment that requires careful consideration, planning, and execution. While the income potential can be attractive, first-time landlords need to be aware of the potential challenges and take steps to minimise them.
Consider the tips above if you are a first-time landlord, to set yourself up for success.
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