If you were thinking of selling your Sarasota home before the COVID-19 crisis swept across the Gulf Coast, you're probably reconsidering that move now. Even as a Sarasota property management company, we know that spring is a popular time to list a home—but this is no ordinary spring. You suddenly have some very real extenuating circumstances to consider when it comes to whether or not to sell your home.

  • Fluctuating mortgage rates and competition from those refinancing has led to home buyer uncertainty.
  • Many Realtors are canceling home showings due to the novel Coronavirus.
  • Even when mortgage rates recover enough to meet home buyer demand, many families are buckling down on their finances due to rising economic instability, leading to decreasing demand.

Prices for real estateWith all of these factors—and more—directly impacting home buyers and sellers during this stressful time for our community, it makes sense that you would consider taking a sale off the table. However, if a sale isn't a sure bet—what is?

  • Have you considered renting out your home?
  • Could you use extra income during the COVID-19 crisis?

If you've already moved into your next home and are now saddled with an empty property because of the current market, why not rent your spare house for additional revenue until the market picks up? If the idea of being a landlord sounds like a lot to take on during social distancing, don't worry: a Sarasota property management expert has you covered!

A vacant property spells trouble—whether we're caught up in a pandemic as a community or not. If you've never considered being a landlord as an alternative income stream while you wait for the market to recover, here are some reasons why you may want to become one now!

Your Spare Home Means Stable Income Long Term

The reliable income provided by a rental property is just one of the reasons why seasoned investors choose to diversify their portfolios through real estate. The best part? You don't need to be an experienced property investor to maximize the benefits of your spare home as a rental. A Sarasota property management partner can help you optimize your income and keep your new rental home profitable—even in an economic downturn or a crisis.

While COVID-19 has had an unprecedented impact on our community, it also raises some important points worth addressing:

  • What happens when your job is deemed "non-essential?"
  • How will you continue to provide for your family?
  • How can you prepare for your financial future if your plans depend on unpredictable stocks?

Plus, when you can't sell your property, you're still left paying for the utilities, property taxes, and coverage that keeps your empty home safe. There's no reason not to put your home to work for you—even if it's just until the market improves. When you decide it's time to sell, you'll have been earning stable income instead of paying for a home you no longer use!

What are some details about your potential Sarasota rental home that you should consider when deciding to move forward? As a Sarasota property management company, we can provide some insight here that may help.

Factors Worth Considering Before Converting Your Home

As an expert in the Sarasota rental market, we know what your prospective tenants are seeking in their new home! However, it's often easy for beginning landlords to miss these important details.

  • Have you made improvements to your home? Certain upgrades can spell a big boost in your rental rate and ROI if they appeal to your future residents! However, the reverse is also true: 'personal touches' to your former home without mass appeal can harm your asking price. Work with an expert property manager to assess your property and find out what works.
  • If you have made upgrades, how much did you spend? This becomes less of a factor if your rental home is only intended to be a temporary solution in an uncertain market. However, long term, these numbers can play significantly into your returns.
  • Does your home need further work? Maybe you were planning on negotiating over this issue with your future buyer. However, necessary repairs needed to provide a safe home for tenants will stall how quickly you can convert your home.
Partial view of two risk managers analyzing infographics together

Beyond these factors, if you're not planning to work with a Sarasota property management company, then you need to evaluate if you have what it takes to be a landlord.

  • Can you handle the marketing and listing process?
  • Can you manage maintenance on your new rental home?
  • Do you know how to safely and securely screen applicants?
  • Do you know how to prepare your property for new renters?
  • Can you handle rent collection—even during social distancing?

These are just a few of the duties associated with running a reliable rental home. Experienced landlords and investors know that it's more than just sitting back and collecting rent! This is where your property management partner can save the day.

That said, being able to manage the process of collecting rent during a crisis is still a skill worth having! If you plan to go the DIY route because you feel confident that you can handle the many aspects of running your rental home, we strongly encourage you first download our FREE Collecting Rent in a Crisis Handbook!

Not only does it contain crucial tips for how to approach your renters during a time of uncertainty, but it also gives you an idea of what DIY landlords are facing—and why working with Gulf Coast property management can be a significant asset.

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