First, thank you to everyone. Everything I know and overcame below is because of this community. Much love and respect.
Begining of autumn I bought my first rental, a duplex, but didn't ask the right questions. Everything looked great, why question - 22% ROI, 1 long-term tenant, leases that extended through the summer, and no repairs needed.
What I learned when I bought: (1) I had mice; (2) lease violated almost every law in Ohio; (3) rent was not "late" until the 15th of the month; (4) gutters were installed wrong and front porch roof was damaged; and (5) the bottom tenants decided they didn't like the house and were not going to pay rent.
Since I was legally required to wait until the 15th of the month to give the 3-day pay or quit notice- and couldn't enforce my late fee or indemnification clause - I decided to pay cash for keys and get the unit back Nov. 8. Inside I found the tenants had destroyed the bathroom tile and left me a bag of pot which took me 8 hours to turn into the police.
Today, I'm happy to report I have no mice, the gutter is not doing more harm till it can be properly repaired in the spring, the bathroom and kitchen were repaired for $140, new, qualified tenants are moving in on December 1st under an enforceable lease, and the rent was raised $25/mo. Now all I have to do is pass my law exams!
*EDIT* Marijuana is not legal in Ohio and landlords have an affirmative, statutory duty to turn in any illegal substances found on their property
8 hours? lol
@Max Tanenbaum yeah. Called the nonemergency line and they never came. Ended up having to take it down to the station and wait 1.5 hours for anyone to see me.
Congrats! I had an acquisition similar to this from a tax deed auction. The inherited tenant was actually a squatter and a real piece of work. Cooking meth in the back of the property, stealing his mother's disability checks, etc. Took a while to get him out and things stabilized but he destroyed the property on his way out. I have a blog post about it: Evicted Tenant Destroy's Property [video]. Congrats on cleaning up the neighborhood!!
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