By Breasia Williams

Are you a landlord looking for new tenants? Consider renting to military families and military tenants. Renting to service members is a great way to give back to our nation’s heroes. Furthermore, as service members and their families move frequently due to different work assignments, landlords can expect to receive a large number of applications and inquiries. For landlords, this high demand for housing can be rather appealing. However, there are important things to know when renting to military personnel. This how-to guide will share the exact steps you need to take to successfully rent out your house to military tenants.

Related read: How to Spend Your Air Force Sign-on Bonus

How to Rent Out Your House to Servicemembers

In this guide, we're showing you how to rent out a house to members of the military. You may be surprised to find out that renting out your house to service members is very similar to renting to those not in the military.

However, there is one exception. Servicemembers are protected under some extra rules and regulations that do not apply to non-military members.

These extras include the military Servicemembers Civil Relief Act, which provides legal protection to servicemembers in the event that finances adversely affect them during service. The Basic Allowance for Housing (BAH) is another extra protection.

Understanding these extra legal protections will help you better navigate the process of renting out your house to servicemembers.

Servicemembers Civil Relief Act

The Servicemembers Civil Relief Act lease termination allows individuals to terminate housing leases without penalty. A landlord should keep this in mind when housing servicemembers and their families.

If a servicemember signs a lease before active-duty service, receives deployment for a minimum of 90 days, or receives permanent change of station orders for a minimum of 90 days, they are qualified to terminate their lease without penalty.

In this case, landlords must return security deposits and relieve tenants of their lease obligations. Additionally, if a tenant is unable to pay rent due to their service, the Servicemembers Civil Relief Act protects them from eviction.

Basic Allowance for Housing (BAH)

Basic Allowance for Housing (BAH) is a stipend given to service members twice a month to help cover their housing costs.

This allowance goes towards housing and ensures that servicemembers have a reliable source of income. However, it does not cover the entirety of their housing costs. BAH will vary based on one’s rank, number of dependents, and location. Therefore, landlords should always verify income and run background checks.

What You Need to Know About the Renting Process

1. Market Towards Military Audiences

How you market your property can help you figure out how to rent out your house to certain audiences. To reach military audiences, you should consider listing your property on various channels. You can also contact your local military housing assistance office, so they can refer servicemembers to your property.

Once your property is thoroughly advertised, you will need to make the home compelling by catering to the needs and wants of servicemembers. Including furniture in the rental is something that may be appealing due to the convenience that this set-up offers for someone who moves frequently.

Making the rental kid friendly with backyard space for play, multiple bedrooms and bathrooms, and having house rules for tenants that keep the surrounding areas safe and respectful is also appealing to members of the military. This is because they often move with their families.

Other appealing factors include flexible lease terms, military discounts, and being within close proximity of military bases and locations. To ensure that you reach your target audience, consider placing physical signs or ads near bases. Additionally, you can ask to digitally advertise on popular websites frequently visited by military personnel.

2. Conduct Proper Screening for Military Tenants

Since service members must pass extensive background checks to join, it may be easy to think that landlords will not have to go to great lengths during the screening process. However, it is important to confirm their military status.

There are online tools, such as this one offered by Militaryverification.com to help you.

In addition to a thorough background check, you should request documents that prove prospective tenants can afford to rent your property.

3. Set Procedures to Properly Handle Move-Out

As it is not uncommon for service members to move with short notice, you as the landlord should have protocols in place, such as emergency funds, to make up for lost income or a waitlist for the guarantee of bringing in a new tenant.

Additionally, for convenient and smooth move-outs, you should always be prepared. This includes having items and staff readily accessible for move-out inspections and security funds ready to be returned to tenants.

Save Time and Money Finding Military Tenants With Innago

Our nation’s military has made great sacrifices for our nation, so it’s only fair that you honor their service. Consider offering a military discount on your listing, making your lease flexible for families, or adjusting the cost of rent to reflect the area’s average BAH rate. Consider providing a military discount on your rental listing to show your care and respect.

Managing multiple properties can become quite overwhelming if you're doing it by yourself. Luckily, Innago is a property management software that was designed to take away that stress. Innago knows that your time is valuable, which is why their software helps streamline your business, helping you get things done easier and more efficiently. Unlike other property management software platforms that take money from you, Innago is all about saving money. Their free software not only helps you easily collect rent online but also enables seamless communication with your tenants.

Best of all, Innago understands the military community and is proud to be an active supporter. “Simple. Powerful. Free.” is their motto. That is why military members can set up a free Innago account to help with managing invoices, document storage, track financial & work orders, and conduct tenant screening. There are no hidden fees or obligations.

Make the rental process enjoyable and stress-free. Contact Innago at 513-572-1708 or by emailing them at sales@innago.com.

Read next: Does the Military Pay Your Mortgage In Arizona?

This editorial is a result of a collaboration with Innago.




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