The 4-1-1 for Philly Landlords

Philadelphia is a vibrant, exciting city with prime opportunities for investing in rental real estate. More affordable than its east coast neighbors New York, Boston, and Washington DC, its historical importance, cultural life, and diversity make it an attractive home city for homeowners and investors alike.

Know the Neighborhoods
Philadelphia is called a “city of neighborhoods.” Before you purchase a rental property, get to know the neighborhoods. Each one is quite distinct and will bring different investment options. For example:

  • Fishtown – Located northeast of Center City on the Delaware River, Fishtown is part of the Riverwards section of the city.  You’ll find tons of restaurants and shopping options in the area, which could appeal to many potential tenants as well as proximity to public transit, major highways, and a vibrant art community.  Prices have risen greatly over the past several years making this a great option for potential future resale value.
  • Logan/Olney – A very affordable neighborhood within the city that is conveniently located on the Broad Street Subway line. This area is just beginning to participate in revitalization. The affordability makes for easier rentals and the main shops and restaurants along Broad street are a great pro for this area.
  • Brewerytown – Just northwest of Center City adjacent to Fairmount Park, Brewerytown was named for the more than 20 breweries that operated there in the 19th century. After Prohibition, the area declined rapidly. Today it is an exciting and eclectic mix of old and new construction and, with the recent explosion of stores within the commercial corridor on Girard Avenue, has brought a quick rise in home values and monthly rental cost.  Within walking distance to the Schuylkill River Trail and new shops and restaurants.

Know the Laws

After you find the right property, you will need to obtain a Rental License from the city. You also need to know the Philadelphia tenant screening laws. While you can set some tenant screening boundaries, such as a minimum credit score and income to rent ratio, you must be careful to avoid tenant discrimination. You cannot deny housing based upon gender identity, sexual orientation, or source of income. You also cannot deny housing based upon the tenant’s exposure to domestic or sexual abuse.

There are basic tenant rights all landlords in Philly must observe. These include the following:

  • Housing must have a flush toilet in a room with a door and a bathtub or shower in a private room.
  • It must have a kitchen sink, a cooking range, and running hot water.
  • You provide pest control before and after leasing.
  • There must be functional doors and windows.

In addition, with every lease landlords must provide and have the following items within their lease; a certificate of rental suitability, a pamphlet on lead law compliance, test for lead paint, the Partners for Good Housing Handbook, and a rental license issued by the city.
It’s never been a better time to invest in The Ian Perler Team. Contact us today to begin.