I felt out of place the first time I walked into the Section 8 office. It didn’t help that the line was long and the lady at the counter actually called me up from the way back to skip everyone and come to the front of the queue.
Despite the awkwardness of my first visit, I now know the lady behind the counter can find the right paperwork and know how to talk to potential tenants. If you are thinking about buying Section 8 rentals and are apprehensive about the whole ordeal, take a trip to your local Section 8 office, introduce yourself to the staff and get a feel for the place.
No matter whether you are skittish or excited about the concept of Section 8, below are some reasons to consider government subsidized housing rentals:
Reasons You Should Buy Secion 8 Rentals
1 – The Check’s in the Mail
Hands down, the best part about leasing your property through Section 8 is the regular checks that come in like clockwork.
2 – Easy Marketing
Forget the newspaper ads. If you want a Section 8 tenant, march down to your local Section 8 office and get your property added to the list. If you have a four bedroom, you can put your property on the four bedroom list. If you can go a bit lower on your rent, you can also market your four bedroom on the three bedroom list. Some cities have their property lists online but my city has a photocopied list that gets updated once a week or so. When you get the list, note the rents for the competing properties to make sure your rent is in the ball park.
3 – More Easy Marketing
Take bulletin board flyers with you to the Section 8 office. I like to print my phone number vertically on the bottom and cut out the strips to make it easy for prospective tenants to pull off a number. With permission from the office, place flyers on every bulletin board in the building.
4 – Even Easier Marketing
Section 8 has a class for people who have recently received new vouchers. Find out the times for the new voucher classes. Show up at the Section 8 office 30 minutes before the meeting and hand out your flyers. Get over any shyness. Go up to strangers and say “Do you know anyone looking for a three bedroom?” Most people know someone and will take a flyer. Some will be interested themselves. Double check with the powers that be (usually the gatekeeper at the counter) to confirm that they are okay with you passing out fliers. Some cities will actually invite landlords in at the end of the meetings; other cities aren’t as accommodating.
5 – The Experience
Working with tenants can be rewarding. I once noticed that one of my Section 8 tenants had a daughter sleeping in a sleeping bag on the floor. I contacted a local church that provides beds for needy families and had them deliver one to the family. Like me, you might discover a kid who would love your used books or a high schooler who needs advice about applying for college.
If you have a lower end rental or are thinking of buying one, look into the possibility of renting through Section 8. Steady rent payments and low cost marketing are just a few of the reasons to at least explore the idea of buying a Section 8 rental.