Find an agent you trust, and keep a tight rein on them. It's good that you will be local and can keep an eye on the place.
Try to come along for the regular checks, and build up a rapport with your tenants.
No smokers, no pets, no social security (I'm not sure what your equivalent is in the US, but I mean people whose rent is being paid for by the state) and personally I would say no students because students = parties.
Make sure your place is spotless and freshly painted when the tenants move in - they are more likely to respect a clean property rather than a place where "they won't notice one more scratch".
Budget and prepare for:
- repainting and refurbishing throughout after the tenants have left.
- the best house insurance available for rentals.
- complete change of locks between and after tenants, and make sure you get copies of all the keys.
- the tax implications of owning a second property.
Can you tell we've been stung? LOL
Good luck to you!