Oct 2009 19

Renting out a Fully Furnished Property? It’s Not As Simple As It May Sound

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photo by Cassandra Lavalle photo by Cassandra Lavalle

Renting out a fully furnished property is a great idea, especially if you own a small apartment or condo. Due to the type of life styles of people who usually rent these types of properties, they usually look for homes ready to be occupied without having to buy anything. Nevertheless, before you will be able to enjoy the extra cash you make by renting a fully furnished property, there are plenty of decisions to be made and lots to think about.

How much will it cost you?

First of all you?ve got to determine how much you will have to pay up front to set it all up. Go through the listings of available fully furnished properties in your area. The properties should be as similar to yours as possible in size, location and furnishing. Once you have a pretty good idea of the rent that is usually charged for a fully furnished property such as yours, list everything that you would have to purchase in order to fall into the category of 'fully furnished'.

These days, a fully furnished property means you will provide not only all the necessary furniture, but also all of the utilities such as gas, electricity, water, phone, cable, wireless Internet, security, all the kitchen ware, appliances, towels, bed linen and cleaning supplies.

Secondly, you have to work out whether fully furnishing your property to the extent described above is financially feasible for you. Write down everything you will have to buy to furnish your property to the extent described above. Also consider the fact that you may have multiple tenants over a number of years, so there will undoubtedly be periods of unoccupation between some tenants. If you believe that listing your property as fully furnished is too much hassle for you at the moment then the solution might be to list your property as ?part-furnished?. This option may not be as lucrative as fully furnished, but if you want an easier life, then part-furnished is probably the way to go.

Documenting the provided facilities and setting up a deposit

If you have previously lived in the property, it is essential to remove all of your private belongings such as photographs and everything else that you consider to be yours. The next step is to make an inventory of every single item that is in the apartment. You should go from room to room with the tenant and agree on everything that is provided by you. That should include counting individual items such as the number of spoons, forks, knifes, towels or linen. It is considered good practice to have the inventory done in the presence of your rental agent and once agreed, the inventory should be signed by all parties. As soon as the contract expires, you will need to go through the property again and make a note of everything that is there. Anything that has been damaged or lost will have to be replaced and paid for from the deposit which was agreed at the beginning of the contract.

With the winter Olympic games closing in, more and more people in Vancouver are considering renting out a fully furnished property to take advantage of this year?s impending gold mine. While this might be the case if you already have a suitable unit, it could become a nightmare if you have to start from a scratch. The return on investment for rental properies should be considered over the long term and not just seen as a get-rich-quick scheme.

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