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Rules for being a landlord

Michigan, like many other states, saw the value of homes drop during the recession. Many homeowners realized that they would make very little or perhaps loose money on a house. While waiting for the housing market to recover, many owners in this situation found themselves entering into a residential lease agreement.

When a homeowner becomes an unexpected landlord, there are a few tips that might make the experience better for all parties concerned. First, it's always a good idea to conduct a background check on anyone who wishes to rent the property. Some tenants are very good at getting free rent, and it's important to see if they have a history of evictions.

It's also important to become familiar with the landlord tenant laws in Michigan and understand that, most of the time, the law is weighted more heavily in favor of a tenant's rights. Landlords should also be aware that things will need repair during the course of a tenancy. If the homeowner isn't handy, it may be best to consider choosing a rental company to handle the details. Generally such companies charge a fee that amounts to about 10 percent of the monthly rental payment.

If a landlord finds it necessary to remove tenants from a rental property, it's important to understand state laws regarding the procedures for eviction. In Michigan, a court order is required and to receive the order, the tenant must be served with some type of written notice from the landlord. Ten days after the judgment of possession is entered, the owner may apply for the order necessary to evict the tenant. Some landlords could find this process burdensome and could request an attorney to handle removing the tenant from the property.

Source; Michigan Courts, Landlord-Tenant Evictions/Recovering Possession of Property, 2013

Source: US News and World Report, " What You Should Know Before Becoming a Landlord", Geoff Williams, November 04, 2013

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