I am new and still in the educate phase for the most part. I am also a big believer in hire people smarter than you are and you are the people you hand out with.
I am leaning towards the buy/hold rental properties as the way I want to go right now.
It seems to me that finding a great deal on a property, finding a great deal on financing, finding good tenants and keeping expenses low are keys to being successful.
This leads me to a few questions: what kind of people should I try to network with that can help me find the good property deals?
Also, how do I go about determining an accurate percentage for expense costs? I have seen the estimates on the BP rental calculator but, this seems like a number that could possible vary wildly based on a number of factors.
Rental expenses are going to vary by property. They will even vary by year for the same property.
Over the long haul about half your rental income will get eaten up by expenses.
either use the analysis tools here or use something simple like excel to start tracking your expenses and projecting future costs. Some properties are just great finds, others you might have to work at it by improving it and raising rates (if the area can support it).