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Consider landlord obligations when deciding if you should rent

Whether you plan to retire in a smaller home or you find yourself wanting to live closer to family in your later years, you have your current home to consider. Selling it may result in a one-time lump sum that could help you with your estate planning and provide an inheritance to your children, but renting it out provides a steady stream of monthly payments that may help support you long-term.

When considering renting a property, you must consider, as described in state statutes, the obligations Delaware requires for landlords.

Contract compliance and safety

As a landlord signing a rental agreement, you agree to abide by a few state-protected demands including repairs and maintenance in order to provide a rental unit that does not endanger the health or safety of your tenants.

Contracts may specify that a tenant perform these repairs, but those come with caveats as well.

You must also provide hot water, heating, water and electricity to the home. Some agreements indicate that a tenant is responsible for paying for one, some or all of these bills but the landlord has the responsibility to make sure that the rental unit has the equipment necessary to access those resources.

Renting vs selling

There are many benefits to renting your home, whether you plan to return to it at some point or not. However, it is important to understand the many obligations that come with that responsibility. Regardless of whether you choose to rent or not, there are resources available to help you determine if it is the best choice and what options you have when dealing with your real estate.

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