My first rental property

4 Replies

Back in 1989, we bought our new home and we turned the old one into a rental property.  The market here in So Cal was very hot and was about at the peak.  Our real estate agent told us to keep the old house and he would help us turn it into a rental.  His reasoning was that property values were going up so fast that we would be foolish to sell the house.

Well, we listened to him and he not only had us hold the house through the peak of the market, but he also put in the worst tenant possible.  It took four months to evict this person.  I couldn't believe that he let her in - she only had one week rent when he let her in.  I had heard all kinds of stories about landlords changing the locks on tenants, so I did it.  The next day, a police officer came to our store and told me that I had to change the locks back or give her a new key.  If I didn't, she could get $100/day until I did so.  I told him that she hadn't paid rent and he told me since I didn't know the law, I had better get an attorney.

From the fateful day back in September 1989, to the time we finally got her out in December 1989, I thought I'll never do this again!  Well, when it's in your blood, it's in your blood.  I have been engulfed in the business of investing in property and being a landlord.  I've learned a lot of lessons, some were very expensive indeed!  I still make mistakes and even though we turned the corner years ago, at times I still feel like a rookie!

Greg Kimura thanks for sharing your story, I believe it shows us the "other" side of real estate investing and provides a balance to the abundant fall into success stories. Cheers!

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