Boulder Real Estate: Sell vs Rent

Do I rent or sell in Boulder?

Great question, do I rent my house/condo/town house out or do I sell in this market?  There are good arguments for each course of action.  And each has its risks and rewards.   Though most of my blogs focus on buying and selling real estate, this blog will focus on renting your home profitably.

Renting in Boulder

If you are planning to rent your property, first you should review the City of Boulder’s rental code and have rental inspection on your property.  The City takes this very seriously; there is a fee for the inspection and usually you will have some items to complete before renting your home.  Next, you’ll want to decide if you are using an agency or property manager or getting it rented on your own.   Finding a tenant can seem easy, but how will you handle the details such as the lease, making certain the renter is a good choice, or any issues such as repairs or late rental payments?  A property management service will charge a fee, but can usually save you money  in the long run by avoiding any costly issues.

Rental Rates – what do I charge?

Next, what to charge? The beauty of Craigslist allows you to start with a generic ad. Just place the cross streets for your property, no photos and a very detailed description.  I recommend starting your rental rate at your current mortgage payment.  Then wait to see what sort of response this generates. If you are not receiving any interest in a day or two, you’ll know you are going to rent for less than your payment.  If you get a lot of responses, you might create a new ad, with the address and pictures, say $100 to $200 over your mortgage payment and find your new tenant.

Risks and Costs

Renting can be a great option but it carries its own set of risks and rewards.  On the plus side, your mortgage is covered, while your home is growing in value.  But now where will you live? Do you have the ability to own your rental while purchasing a new place?   Be sure to ask a mortgage professional these questions before you lock yourself out of your house with a lease.  Take time to set aside a reserve fund in case you find yourself making two payments – sometimes even the best of renters leave for a myriad of reasons – job changes, marriage, children.

Long term benefit

Just ask Donald Trump if holding real estate long term is a good plan.  “The Donald” is always holding real estate during slumps and selling high post recovery.  You can do the same with your real estate.  Now it’s time to find your next property, so give me a call to discuss renting your existing place, finding an investment property or buying a home.



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