Becoming a Landlord

There are many resources available to assist you as you prepare to rent out your accessory dwelling unit, find a tenant, and execute a lease.

Getting Ready to Rent

Sharing Housing – This website has lots of useful advice about sharing your home; much of it applies even if your tenant will be in a private apartment. The site has a blog that addresses common concerns of first-time landlords, and several worksheets that will help you to get started.

Tax Advice – As a landlord, some of your expenses will be tax-deductible. Talk with your tax adviser to find out what records you will need to keep.

Guide for Landlords and Tenants  – You should familiarize yourself with the contents of this  guide from the California Department of Consumer Affairs. It covers many topics, including unlawful discrimination, security deposits, and repairs.

Finding a Tenant

HomeShare Program – If you are 55 or older you can contact Leslie Klor who runs this Marin County program offered by Episcopal Senior Communities. She conducts a personal interview and needs assessment with the homeowner, interviews potential tenants, facilitates potential matches, helps the parties reach an agreement, and will even assist in resolving conflicts that arise over the term of the rental.

Housing Choice Voucher Program (formerly Section 8) – The Marin Housing Authority (MHA) runs this program. Tenants pay 30% of their income toward the rent, and the Housing Authority pays the remainder, depositing their share directly into your bank account each month. Your property would be listed in MHA’s database and you would interview potential tenants who have been pre-screened by MHA. There are many program benefits for landlords.

Contact Lilypad Homes – Lilypad gets inquiries from people who would like to live in an ADU or junior accessory dwelling unit. We can pass their names on to you.

Formalizing the Agreement

Accessory Dwelling Unit Rental Agreement – This flexible agreement can be used for a lease or rental and was jointly developed by Lilypad Homes and Professional Publishing. It covers just about anything you might want to include in a lease – you select the sections that are applicable to your situation. It is available for purchase through the link above.