How much rent can I receive for my property?
To determine how much rent you can charge for your property, you will need to assess the market rent - in other words, how much money similar properties in your area are renting for.
A good place to start is to carry out some research online. It is important to pay attention to the requested prices, as well as how long the properties stay on the market at those rates. Your local LJ Hooker agent can provide you with plenty of useful information on comparative rentals in the area.
How long is a typical lease?
In Australia, standard lease periods are generally either six or 12 months. While longer lease terms are possible, you are likely to find a smaller number of tenants who are willing to commit to this time.
You may wish to speak to your LJ Hooker agent about the different advantages of each lease length and help you determine how to maximise your return most effectively.
Can I increase the rent during the lease period?
Current rent rates must remain in place for the remainder of the lease term (unless in SA or NT, where rents can be increased every 6 months, regardless of fixed term) - if you then want to increase the rent, you should give your tenant the required notice that you intend to change their rates at the end of their current lease.
Notice periods can vary from state to state - your LJ Hooker agent can help you with the process in your area.
Is it mandatory to enlist the services of a real estate agent to manage a rental property?
While you are not required to have an agent manage your rental property, it is important to know that private owners are bound by the same legislative requirements that also apply to real estate agents.
This means that if a private owner was found to be in breach of the Residential Tenancies Act, they could be subject to the same disciplinary action - including potential fines - that would apply to real estate agents.