Investing in Rentals Locally vs. From Afar: Which is REALLY a Better Strategy?

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I do so love to tackle “big debate” topics! I know this one — whether you should invest in rental properties locally to where you live or if it’s okay to invest non-locally — definitely hits a lot of hot spots on the BiggerPockets Forums, so I figure, let’s bring the wrestling match over to the blog!

As you will always hear me say, regardless of the rights or wrongs of any one particular method of investing, the only thing that matters when it comes to deciding what method of investing you choose is your comfort level. There is no method of real estate investing, no matter how good or profitable it may be, that is worth you losing sleep at night.

On the flip side (such a great pun considering the industry!), if you are happy as a duck and sleeping like an angel because you feel so good about your investing methods that you don’t have a stress in the world, I will never contend with that! You could be losing money with the investing you are doing, but if it is what makes you happy and keeps you at minimal stress levels, then I will still support you. I think this is such a big message that gets lost in the chaos: REI should be enjoyable! There will always be stress and mistakes and lessons learned, but at the end of the day, there is no reason you shouldn’t be enjoying what you do.

Now, a critical piece of this puzzle — figuring out what you enjoy and what keeps you sleeping at night — is education. I stand strong in the belief that you can’t truly know what won’t stress you out if you don’t have at least some education around it. That education is what I’m hoping to provide you with in regard to whether investing in rental properties locally or non-locally is for you.

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Why You May Not Want to Invest in Rental Properties Locally

Here is a list of logistical reasons that may have you looking outside of your local area for rental properties or at least considering the option.

Entry Price

The most basic aspect of whether you want to buy in your local market is whether or not you have enough capital to buy there. There are a lot of markets out there that are freakishly expensive, and you may not have that kind of capital.

Forms of Profit

Assuming your goal with buying a rental property is profit, different forms of profit may not exist in your local area. Typically with a rental property, the two most common strategies for earning income are:

  1. Monthly Cash Flow: Where you receive income each month from the rental income, after all expenses are paid.
  2. Appreciation: Typically houses increase in value, and that value is the appreciation; also known as equity.

There are many ways of profiting from a rental property, but typically going into shopping for a rental property, your goal is going to probably be either monthly cash flow or appreciation. For example, Midwestern markets are known to produce monthly cash flow but be pretty minimal on the appreciation front. San Francisco and Los Angeles, on the other hand, aren’t known for monthly cash flow at all but are very well known for appreciation. Other markets may be some combination of the two. So depending on what you are after in terms of cashing in, your local market may or may not be the place to invest.

If you want to know more about monthly cash flow and how to calculate whether or not a property is expected to see positive cash flow or not, check out “Rental Property Numbers So Easy You Can Calculate Them on a Napkin.”


Market Fundamentals/Interest

Maybe the market you live in is a declining market or maybe where you live just isn’t somewhere you are all that interested in investing in. Or maybe you plan to move somewhere else later on, so you want to start investing there now. Or maybe you’ve bought plenty of properties where you are and now you are interested in trying your hand elsewhere, or you want to diversify your portfolio to include several markets/locations for risk mitigation purposes. Whatever the reason, you may just not be feeling your own market, and that’s totally fine. Or maybe even you just want to be a total rebel and try for cool points by telling people you own property in some other city (I’d give you cool points).

The Downsides of Investing in Rental Properties Outside of Your Local Area

I would say there two downsides to investing in rental properties outside of your local area. If I were to be more accurate though, I would say there are really only 1.5 downsides of investing in rental properties outside of your local area. Why the half? Because one of these is a huge issue for some people and a total non-issue for others (me). I’m still going to list both, though.

Downside #1: You need to hire property management.

Property management can be a big pain in the you-know-what for anyone investing outside of their local area. The exception to this, of course, is if you are a long-distance landlord and not using a property manager for your rental property (which poses its own set of stresses). Property management is, to me, considered a major downside because of how hard it is to find a good manager. And the downside to not finding a good one? A bad property manager can cost you a fortune!

What is so bad about property management, anyway?

Property managers don’t make a big margin of profit per property, so the trade doesn’t always attract the highest quality individuals/companies out there. Not to say there aren’t good ones, but the really good folks out there are probably going to want a higher income for doing any kind of job. There is definitely an art in figuring out how to really profit by being a property manager, and it is doable, but the general income model is a little tough to work sometimes in terms of who it attracts.

For some reason communication has never really seemed to be much of a strong suit of property managers, whether it be because the manager isn’t good at communicating or because the company’s organization for handling calls and questions is done in some kind of complicated or confusing way. I have only liked individual property managers (versus property management companies) for this exact reason. Nothing feels worse than not being able to get questions about your property answered, not being able to get ahold of your manager easily (or at all), having income statements you don’t understand, or getting unexpected repair charges you can’t seem to get to the bottom of.

If you are relying on your property manager to keep your property in good shape, there is a level of trust that is required for that. The reality is, your manager can tell you all day long that your property is doing great, looks great, repairs have gone well, and your tenants are taking good care of the property — and yet all of that could be total lies. Eek! How would you know otherwise?

Downside #2: Not being able to get to your property quickly.

Here’s the “half” one. Personally, this issue doesn’t bother me a bit, and quite frankly, I actually prefer not being able to drive by my properties. I know myself — if I were able to drive by my properties, if I so much as saw a scuff on the garage door, I would stress out immediately. The reality is that a scuff really doesn’t matter, but I’d stress and go all control freak on my manager (which I assume I would have because regardless of location, I still don’t want to be a landlord). Or if I didn’t have a manager, I don’t have a clue about how to get a scuff off a garage door, so ick! All the while, a scuff doesn’t matter.

But that’s just me.

I totally get why being able to get to your property quickly or easily is desired by most. It’s to make sure your property is staying in tact! Regardless of whether you are the landlord or you are using a property manager, how else would you confirm everything is going okay if you can’t see the property? Now, a lot of this changes too if you are handy or skilled at being a landlord or dealing with properties yourself. If that’s the case, I can see even more reason to buy locally — so you don’t have to pay other people to do work that you can do. I am not one of those people, so even if I had a property near me, I wouldn’t have the foggiest about how to deal with it anyway (or the interest).

But again, I get it. Not being able to get to your property, for whatever reason, is considered a huge downside for many.


Related: Investing Locally: Why I Won’t Do a Deal More Than 30 Minutes Away

Mitigations for the Downsides

Good news! Both downsides can be mitigated with and dealt with. If you want them to be.

Mitigation: Property management.

Find a good property manager! Duh. Well, then it gets harder because good ones can be hard to find. Some suggestions? First, ask current investors who they use. Ask in the BiggerPockets Forums, ask at real estate club meetings, ask everywhere. Referrals are one of the best ways to find someone you like. If you can’t find anyone who is using a property manager in the particular area that your property is located, don’t worry. That’s what Yelp and Google are for. Write down all the companies you can find and give them all a call.

You can also call up local real estate agents and see if they recommend anyone. Interview a lot of potential managers. Just by interviewing a lot of them, even if you don’t have a clue of what you should be asking, you should be able to narrow down your list to the property managers who at least sound half worth their salt. You’ll be able to tell, I promise. And don’t get discouraged if you don’t find someone who sounds good right away. It took me a whole year to find my first good one! Believe me, they are out there, so just keep looking.

Worst case scenario, you hire a not-so-good property manager. The world will not end, I promise. Solution? Fire them and hire a new one! Easy as that. Don’t buy into that crap that managers might try to tell you—that you have to sign a contract saying you will use them for a certain amount of time. No way! Property managers work for you. If they are horrible, they should be fired. That would be like you owning a company and your employee telling you that you have to keep them for a certain amount of time. No. You are the boss of your property, so remember that. Bad manager? Fire them. And do it quickly, too. Don’t wait around hoping they will get better. You (and your wallet) are the only one who will suffer for that. Trust me, I learned that the very hard way myself, and it cost me a lot of money.

Extra bonus? You can hire and fire property managers over the phone! I did. I’ve never once been local to my properties to deal with any of that.

Good managers are out there, it may take some trial and error to find them, but trust that they exist.

Mitigation: Not being able to get to your property quickly.

Now, if you are a control freak (I say that in the most loving way; I am one myself) and you will lose sleep and stress out if you can’t check up on your property, then don’t buy out-of-state or anywhere that you can’t get to. It’s not worth it. As I said before, I’d rather you own a property you don’t even profit from if it means you will sleep easy at night. If that’s the case — that you will lose sleep — ignore this mitigation and buy locally.

If you will be able to sleep at night, at least you think you might be able to, if you buy outside of your local area, then let’s talk. The reality is, it’s doable. I’ve only bought out-of-state from where I live, and I wouldn’t have it any other way.

I think the biggest thing to know is that, in my experience with my properties, there has never been an issue I couldn’t handle over the phone — even hiring and firing property managers! I’ve never had to be at any of my properties in person for anything. And honestly? If I was at one of the properties and something was going on, I don’t know what I would be able to do anyway. I’m not handy, I don’t know squat about how to manage a property or fix anything, so what good would it do?

Pictures and video go a long way when it comes to confirming work has been done, things that need doing, etc. I think communication from your property manager goes a long way as well. I don’t get suspicious about my properties until a manager is hard or impossible to get ahold of.

You can always fly out to your property once a year or two, however often you feel comfortable. Just go and check up that the property condition and quality is what you expect it to be (and what the manager has promised you), and there you go! Your travel expenses are write-offs on your taxes anyway if you are going to check out your properties.

I think people’s main focus about this supposed downside, though, is based more on the issue of being able to get to the property should something go wrong. Again, assess your own skill level on that. Can you actually help if you are at the property in person? Maybe, maybe not. So be sure to consider that.


Related: What a Trashed, Mold-Infested Rental Taught Me About Out-of-State Investments

There you have it! Obviously, I’m in support for buying non-locally, unless you live in a market that is awesome for investing. Many of us are not though, so if it’s something you have pondered at all, don’t give up!

Oh, a couple notes about this. I do not necessarily support buying non-locally if you are buying fixer-uppers. If I were flipping or rehabbing houses to hold, any kind of substantial fixing up, then yes, I would be more interested in buying locally. This article is based more on general maintenance, not rehabs. The other note is, if you do decide to buy non-locally, make sure you are working with a stellar team! When you buy non-locally, you have to work with other people. Those people will make or break you. So make sure they are great! Ask for referrals from other investors, interview them, etc.

Okay, now let’s hear it. If you are adamant about only buying locally, let’s hear why. If you have thought about out-of-state rental properties but are still leery, let’s hear why.

I want to hear from everyone!

About Author

Ali Boone

Ali Boone is a lifestyle entrepreneur, business consultant, and real estate investor. Ali left her corporate job as an Aerospace Engineer to follow her passion for being her own boss and creating true lifestyle design. She did this through real estate investing, using primarily creative financing to purchase five properties in her first 18 months of investing. Ali’s real estate portfolio started with pre-construction investments in Nicaragua and then moved towards turnkey rental properties in various markets throughout the U.S. With this success, she went on to create her company Hipster Investments, which focuses on turnkey rental properties and offers hands-on support for new investors and those going through the investing process. She’s written nearly 200 articles for BiggerPockets and has been featured in Fox Business, The Motley Fool, and Personal Real Estate Investor Magazine. She still owns her first turnkey rental properties and is a co-owner and the landlord of property local to her in Venice Beach.


  1. Dan Perrott

    Here is my perspective as a local investor that has remote investors in the same market.

    Many but not all remote investors understand how bad their investments are being managed. Their properties are not maintained and managed properly. The management companies find a warm body to rent the properties to make their cut without any concern for the investments themselves. The properties become eyesores and you can quickly identify the properties. This is why a selection of a good management partner (it is a partnership) is so important that I cannot emphasize it enough. The good property managers will manage every property like it is their own investment at risk.

    A good management company over communicates, effectively screens applicants, provides relative documentation to the owner and follows up with evidence of their work through video and photos.

    A good remote investor will audit their management partner unannounced and will visit their properties to inspect them regularly.

    I manage all of my own properties but I see what property management companies are doing to our communities when the owners are content to be passive and just collect a check.

    Thanks @ALI for your post.

    • Ali Boone

      I love your input Dan! You really provided the heart of the key to property management. I’m even taking a mental note of it for my own properties! 🙂 I love the qualities of a “good property management company” you list.

  2. The author misses the point of being local. There are many facets and factors involved with real estate that only locals will know. Like which area is going bad or good and why. Or maybe the door nearby is thinking of selling. Or networking to find great deals. Or keeping up with the commercial and residential development news. The advantages list is long for most investors. Being local usually has very little to do with being physically present to work at the property. It is about gaining local knowledge and contacts in the area so you know exactly where, when, why and how to invest. Most local investors I know use property or on site managers so I don’t see that part of the equation other than being local you will know the good one. All investors should realise you will be at an extreme disadvantage competing if you are not local. I have seen the prices, managers and locations out of staters end up with….believe me you don’t want to be that guy or gal. If you are investing far away the extra challenges should be obvious.

    • Ali Boone

      Steve, I really like what you include as to hidden benefits, so to speak, of why being local is important. I obviously don’t invest local, so I definitely encourage anyone who does to offer their arguments for it! I really like yours because they are things I wouldn’t have even thought about. In my case, I have no interest in knowing what is going on or who is selling or whatever…I just stick with the general trends (location going good or bad, etc.) and I do find that a good property manager will be up on all of the things you mention for me. So it is an option, but certainly there are the horror stories, so it goes both ways and all depends on who you work with.

      Great input.

  3. Good comments all, but my decisions are driven by the bottom line. I can by one home in California that will barely if at all cash flow or for the same price I can buy three homes in an area that has good job growth, appreciation and rising rents. The appreciation will not be as high as a California property but then when the market tanks the drop will not be as steep. I am not talking about turkey homes but 10 year old homes in a great neighborhood. I have been a buy and hold investor for 40 years, I started out in California and I can tell you when you finally realize that the entire US is your market your net worth will increase and your monthly cash flow will follow suit. Given that if you are happy with local investing by all means do what you know, just acknowledge that maybe there is money on the table you may be leaving behind.

  4. Jennifer Shambrook

    I bought a house in the town where I grew up and planned to retire. It was a foreclosure, a great deal, and a great neighborhood. I lived out of state, four hours away. This was three years ago. We have purchased 3 more houses in that little town and have now moved 10 hours away. We are in he process of purchasing another there with our closing in two weeks. We have a plumber, an HVAC man, an electrician and groundsman that we trust. We had a sorry property manager, but fired him and now have a satisfactory manager. We decided to keep our house when we moved from Memphis and have a good team there, too. It has had its headaches, of course, but my absence or presence would not have kept the furnace from going out or a deadbeat tenant from not paying her last two months’ rent. All in all, geography has not been a factor. We do visit the properties a couple of times per year.

    • Ali Boone

      I love this as well Jennifer. I love that everyone so far is including details on their experiences….it really helps paint clearer pictures for everyone reading. So thank you! And congrats on the properties! Hahaha…I love the part about your absence or presence not keeping from the furnace going out or a deadbeat tenant from not paying rent. Killer phrasing!

  5. I think this is a relatively fair and balanced article. As the owner and broker of a full-service Help-U-Sell in Las Vegas, our property management deals with a lot of out of state owners. The flip side of the coin is owners that want to micro manage, have no trust, somehow seem to all magically have handyman skills, want to pay less for work but still want skilled, honest, licensed workers, and those that call for an hour long conversation every week, or even every day. Property management is not a job for the faint of heart and requires honesty, experience, patience and a careful set of boundaries.

    • Ali Boone

      I totally agree Kelly. Further making it hard to find good property managers because it can be a tedious job! There definitely should always be a balance of communication…so the PM is communicating to the owner enough, and the owner is leaving the PM alone enough. As an owner, I am completely trusting and never bug my PM as long as he communicates with me, but if he stops communicating with me, I end up feeling like I’ve become a micro-manager because of how much I have to ask and bug him. Always best to find the right balance.

  6. Daniel Kenney

    In my experience, it’s all about the people you work with and team you have in place in an out-of-state market. A good PM/team can make an average property/location a great investment, whereas a bad PM/team in the best CF/appreciation market can make a great property/location a bad investment. The deals will always be out there in some form or another, and frankly analyzing deals is not particularly difficult these days with all the resources available. The most work is spending the time and effort building a trustworthy team in the out-of-state market you are considering. Having trustworthy, experienced, knowledgeable boots on the ground will make or break your investment.

  7. Tony Velez

    This is a silly question. Most commercial multi family real estate investors….invest out of state. Correct? They also search and interview and do there due diligence on property Managemnt for there newly purchased property. Correct? Basically follow the steps the big boys do on a smaller scale.

    I’m thinking if it’s good enough for the big boys?

    Tony V

  8. Karen Margrave

    As a licensed real estate broker that sells turn key properties Ali, maybe you can tell us what the specifics are that you look at when putting investors into properties. What do you do to mitigate the risk for investors that are unable to visit the properties in person? Do you have a set criteria? Do you encourage people to check out areas doing searches online, possibly use Google Earth, etc.?

    I always encourage people to invest locally, and for many reasons, the biggest one being there are just too many variables. People usually know their local areas, what neighborhoods are in demand, what schools, etc. They know if there’s a dump site or something down the street that may cause odors in the air, or venues that may create a lot of noise, possibly an airport nearby with traffic, etc.

    Though properties may “cash flow”, anything will cash flow if you put enough money down. However; if appreciation is next to nothing, it means there is not a high demand for property, as prices are determined by supply and demand. Therefore; if an investor has all their money tied up on a property, even though it cash flows, what happens when something happens in life and they need to get their equity back out?

    There’a always the question of quality of investment over quantity. The standard real estate adage of LOCATION, LOCATION, LOCATION, always holds true. Usually when prices are higher, and there’s appreciation it is because the area has high demand caused by a good local economy, strong job growth, educational opportunities, good medical care, accessible by plane and good transportation systems, and then the fun stuff that the citizens enjoy, such as sporting, music, cultural events, great shopping, amusements and recreation in some areas (surfing, snowboarding, base jumping, etc.)

    Even in areas where there is appreciation, or higher prices, smaller investors can get in on deals by buying smaller properties such as condos, or forming a real estate investment group, participate through crowdfunding, lending, etc. Cash flow can even be found in Vacation Rental properties, etc.

    One thing I know for certain, each investor should weigh all the pros and cons of each investment, do their own due diligence and make sure that the investment they are making works for them, and their life and goals. I’m not saying not to invest in other states, I’m suggesting no matter what state you are in, maybe looking in your own back yard is the best first step.

  9. Ali Boone

    Hey Karen, good questions, great input, and all around good considerations. I could make a whole article by itself just in answering how to mitigate risk for out-of-state buyers who can’t visit the property. The very short of it though, and if I could only choose one answer, it would be–it’s all in the team you work with. Find the right team (one trait of which being that they do exactly what you mention about knowing the local areas and demand and dump sites, etc.) and you are golden. I have found those teams and bought sight unseen on my own properties out-of-state and done just fine. The team is the golden ticket. But then the second layer there is determining the worth of the team. If you can’t visit the property yourself to see it in person and determine a lot of what you want to know, it can still be pretty easy to determine what you are getting into. Hire a property inspector, ask a 3rd party person (an expert of some capacity…an agent, a PM, an inspector, somebody) to do an evaluation of the specific location for you, etc. You can hire as many people as you want to, specific to the area, to confirm what is being advertised. Really not a big deal. It’s all in how thorough you want to be.

    For clarification and legal purposes– I am not a broker (I am an agent) and I do not sell turnkeys.

    Can you give us an example of how you would be able to get someone to cash flow in Orange County? You said anyone can find something to make work in their local area, so what have you found that can work in Orange County specifically? Care to share some numbers? Like you said, anyone can cash flow with enough money down. So, curious how you interpret all of this…

    • David Greene

      Like Ali, I’ve also bought more than a few properties side unseen. Some I’ve held for years now. Never had a problem. It really is the team. Finding good people, and a good system (technology makes this SO easy now) is 10x more important than seeing the property yourself. I know my limitations, nothing I see is gonna be better than what an inspector sees, no comps I run are going to be more accurate than a professional property manager. No opinion I have is gonna be better than a [email protected]$$ realtor’s. Trust professionals to do what they do and benefit from their expertise.

  10. I really appreciate all the comments for and against out of state investing. We are new at investing and we were told by other investors to get out of your back yard. So our first rental property we purchased was out of state. We purchased a property that at the time we had no idea of the neighborhood. We had a tenant that stayed for two years and is now leaving due to hearing gunshots and a neighbor that harrasses her. Out of state investing is probably not so advantageous if you are an amateur like we are. We have a PM that has been in business for some time. Hes a GRI and ABR Broker. But the PM was given a 10 notice from the tenant that she was moving, not a 30 day notice. So we have no tenant for the following month. We told him our concerns and he thinks the tenant should get her deposit back but clearly shes not abiding by the contract. Her deposit pays for her rent for the following month for she gave no notice. I asked him if he will have a tenant in there by next month. For two years now i havent had any pics of the property or pics of repairs we paid for. He told us that if we want him to continue managing the property then let him manage it for he knows what hes doing. This sounds like hes not wanting to communicate with what his plans are? We had to sign a contract stating that he will remain the PM for 5 years. We are liable to the contract unless he decides to relinquish his duties as the PM? IF he is not abiding by the contract the tenant signed then is he not representing the owners of the property properly? We are in a jam for he asked us if we still wanted him to manage the property? Why would he ask this if he knows he has a 5 year contract we signed? IS he trying to quit us? Has anyone gone through this with an out of state property? We didnt have a team. We only had the realtor that sold us the property and the PM. At the time its all we thought we needed. But now we may need to look for another property manager in a town that has crime. But the price was what we could afford to get started. We also thought that people need a place to live even in not so nice neighborhoods. Otherwise the home was being vandalized for nobody had lived there for over a year. I was so excited to find a blog discussing out of state investing for i had not seen a blog on this subject for a long time. Im right in the middle of trying to get a tenant in that home in December for the tenant gave her 10 day notice that she was moving. We are working with a PM that doesnt let us know if hes working on getting a tenant. For if the house is vacant again it will be vandalized. We are basically scrambling trying to find a tenant ourselves by calling around. Why would the PM not honor the contract the tenant signed for a 10 day notice to be given if shes planning to move? Is he not doing his job?

    • Ali Boone

      Hey Cozy. Oh geesh, yep, sounds like a typical PM headache! It sounds like he’s a bad property manager. For a few reasons, not holding the tenant to her lease for starters and wanting to give her deposit back (that’s crazy), but to have you sign a 5-year agreement that he will manage it? That’s a huge red flag to me. I don’t buy into ever signing any length contract with a PM because PMs essentially work for you. That’s like an employee telling their employer they have to keep him/her for a certain length of time. That’s crazy and makes no sense. I’m not positive how it would be best for you to get out of this situation, but it may be worth some calls to other local PM companies and run the scenario by them…for two reasons…1. you need a new PM anyway, but 2. they may have better insight as to how to handle this goofball.

      Keep us posted! Sorry you are having to deal with that!

      • Thank u so much for responding to our comments. Im glad to tell you Ali we got a little more info from the PM when we called him early the day before Thanksgiving for we knew the PM might be leaving early for the Thanksgiving holiday. Sure enough when we called he told us that he was going to be traveling that day. We were glad we were able to speak to him before the holiday for by the end of the weekend the month of November would be finished not knowing what the PM was planning to do with no tenant for December? The PM told us that since she was a section 8 tenant it would take the state a month to get through all the paper work before she would be able to get into another place. So the PM told us that the tenant would most likely still be in the house she is renting from us. whew!! He also told us that he would be showing the property to prospects in the middle of December. WHEW!!! again. He also told us that we couldnt be too picky about low income tenants for in order for him to get a tenant we had to allow the tenants to have a pet and they can smoke. Is it considered beyond normal wear and tear if the pet damages the home or you need to paint and get new carpets due to smoke smell from tenant smoking? Is the tenants deposit suppose to be used to cover those types of damages? I just dont know why the PM didnt email us with the response we received from him over the phone? He also agreed to send us pics of the property so we can be updated on the properties condition. He told us he manages dozens of section 8 properties. We worry if the tenants deposit is enough to pay for painting and new carpets if they damage them due to pets and smoking? Or does a tenant like that cost you more in repairs? Do you have tenants that have pets or smoke? We were just wondering if you did are the repairs costly? You are right about PM’s though. They dont communicate or keep in touch very well. We called HIM for we knew the lease for the tenant was done in November. It seems like PM’s are not as concerned on the status of the property as the owners are. At one point it almost seemed like the PM wanted to quit us. But just wanted to let everyone know that since our phone call, he let us know what he planned on doing. But isnt it standard for the PM to take pics of before and after regarding repairs to the property? He also never did that for us. I guess we are letting other investors know what to look for in a PM also. We are under a 5 year contract if we signed the contract right? Maybe investors also need to let the PM know how they expect the PM to perform. If you have not spoken to your PM for more than 6 months, you should try to contact them to see if there have been any changes with the tenant or the property. I think thats often enough unless theres another problem you are aware of that you might need to contact him sooner. We are still learning. But do you notice that most PM,s have a contract that you must stay with them a certain length of time unless they decide not to perform services to your property any longer? I guess we found that to be the case. Has anyone else experienced a challenging PM? What was the situation and how was it resolved? Thank you for taking the time to comment. The comments have been so educating. thank you again

  11. Wesley Wong

    If you cannot make it there in person to evaluate the house and area, who are you relying on to be your eyes and ears before you buy? I understand that the property manager is there when you have a property but who helps you before you buy? Are you simply relying on online data such as criminal activity, trends in the neighborhood, and Google Street view?

    • Ali Boone

      Hey Wesley. There are different options for who can help you to buy something. Some agents focus on investors, other investors are often a good resource, property managers (a lot of them are also agents), there are the turnkey routes, and yeah…I’d say networking is the biggest help! Ask other investors who they have used to buy through or their experiences, etc. You’ll learn a lot and most likely get connected to lots of folks who can help you out.

    • Edward Synicky

      Wesley, use all of the on line options, use BP and ask if any one has purchased in the area you are interested in and seek their advice. Your intial boots on the ground is the real estate agent who is looking to give every investor a good experience as they want you to repeat. As an example I spent time on the ground with my agent in Phoenix and we looked at area’s and properties together. After they learned what I wanted and I learned the area’s I came home and purchased site unseen except for face time and lots of pictures. I have many properties I have never seen. The last line of defence is the home inspection. This is unbiased and can be used to walk away or to use as leverage to lower the sales price. Your first deal is the hardest and a few days spent with the realtor is highly advised, after that it is much easier on the nerves. Good luck.

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