Is Being A Landlord: More Trouble Than It’s Worth?
It’s the way to make money … or so some people claim. On the surface, it seems likes like a surefire bet; in reality, it’s usually more headache than it’s worth. The challenges start early, and they almost always involve time and money.
Do You live too far away from the property? The farther you live away from your rental property, the harder it will be to monitor what is happening to it. Collecting rent, taking care of maintenance and eviction will all be made more difficult and costly if you live in another county – or state.
Do You understand cash flow? The purpose of renting is to make a profit from your property, or to at least break even on the mortgage, taxes and maintenance costs of ownership. You must be certain to charge enough rent to cover not only the fixed costs but also to allow for emergency repairs and unexpected expenses. If you do not charge the appropriate rent, you can have excellent tenants and still lose money.
Are You Lax about screening applicants? All would-be tenants are not equal. Choosing a tenant that is solvent, clean and respectful of your property and the lease agreement is key to having a pleasant landlord experience. You must be prepared to ask for employment information, renter’s history and references – and check them!
Do You Understand the legal side? Having a solid lease agreement will not only eliminate confusion about you and your tenant’s rights, but it can be a tool to help you recoup losses if the tenant and landlord relationship goes awry. There are many standard lease agreements available. You should either purchase and learn every item on it or have a customized lease form made by an attorney.
Do You think it is a no-hassle payday? If you think that you will hand a key to someone and begin receiving rent checks on the first of every month, you have not accepted the realities of renting. Tenants will need in-home repairs. They will need to be reminded to keep the yard clean. The home will need to be treated for termites. Heating and air conditioner filters will need to be changed. Being a landlord is a job, not a free paycheck.
Have considered maintenance and repair issues? If you are handy, you may elect to do your own repairs and maintenance. If your talents do not fall in this category, you will need to find reliable handymen, plumbers and appliance repairmen to assist you in keeping the rental in livable condition.
You are too soft hearted to enforce your own lease agreement? “But Mr. Landlord, we’ve had a hard time this month. Perhaps we can pay half now and the rest on payday?” If you have a hard time saying no to this or other situations, you may not be cut out for this profession. While it is not necessary to be heartless, you must be willing to protect your interests, lest your tenant’s money problems quickly become your own.
Have You Had Legal Problems with the Tenants? 1. Tenant Doesn’t Pay Rent,
2. Tenant Files Bankruptcy,
3. Tenant Violates The Lease,
4. Tenant Claims Uninhabitable Conditions,
5. Tenant Claims Mold Problems,
6. Tenant Sub Leases the property,
7. You have to Evict the Tenant in court’
8. Other Problems …….
Are you interested in selling your rental because of the issues stated above??? If so, now is an EXCELLENT time to do so, as my clients have recently experienced great success selling their homes at or near their asking price in a very short time after placing their homes on the market.