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Tips for Buying a Property for Rental Income

 Posted on January 20, 2024 in Residential Real Estate

IL real estate lawyerIf you are planning to purchase a residential property that you will rent to tenants, there are a few specific things you should look for or avoid. Right now, the market is excellent for potential landlords. Housing prices have finally begun to drop back to somewhat more reasonable levels, making it easier to buy a house now than it was a few years ago. If you are purchasing an apartment building, duplex, or other multi-family dwelling, there may be additional costs involved as the seller likely knows what the property is worth when rented out. Rent prices have increased steadily, putting landlords at a slight advantage. However, there is some liability - and a good bit of work - involved in being a landlord. Working with a Cook County, IL, real estate attorney is generally the best way to protect yourself and your investment

What to Look for and Avoid When Buying Rental Properties in Cook County, IL

When you are renting a property you own to long-term tenants, you will need to pay strict attention to a variety of local housing code ordinances. You will likely be accountable for maintaining the property so that it is up to code and meets all local requirements. Some helpful tips include: 

  • Safety is everything - The most important thing is ensuring that the home you are welcoming tenants into is a safe place for them to live. You could become liable if someone is injured due to an unreasonably dangerous condition on the property. This means that you must look for any safety issues that would need to be addressed before tenants can move in, such as loose handrails, tripping hazards due to cracks in the driveway, poorly lit stairwells, and improperly grounded outlets that could pose a fire hazard. Consider how much time and money you are willing to invest in repairs. 
  • Consider the area and likely renters - Location is everything. While purchasing an inexpensive property in an area you might not want to live in yourself can be an easy way to start your journey as a landlord, consider the tenants your unit would likely attract. If you rent a property in a known high-crime area, there is a greater likelihood that your tenants may use their units for criminal purposes, such as illicit drug use or prostitution. 
  • Evaluate existing tenants - If there are already tenants living in the units you plan to buy, you may have certain obligations to them. 
  • Plan for repairs - Consider what type of repairs will likely need to be made in the next 5-10 years. If you cannot charge enough rent to cover replacing a damaged roof or ancient plumbing, you may want to keep shopping. 

Contact a Hyde Park, IL, Real Estate Attorney

The Sherrod Law Firm, Ltd. is skilled in helping future landlords find the best possible property. Our experienced Cook County, IL, real estate lawyers will work to set you up for success in your new business venture. Contact us at 312-321-6910 for a complimentary consultation

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