rental property management

11 Replies

I'm a new real estate investor in southeast MA and was wondering what types of tools would be recommended for a landlord to have and what types of repairs should I expect to make as a landlord. I understand some repairs require a professional, so obviously anything outside of that realm. Thanks in advance!

Plumbing issues seem to be one issue that a fair number of landlords get contacted about and that, if a landlord wishes, they can address themselves.  These are fairly simple repairs; a leak under the sink, a clogged sink, a running toilet.  Tools such as a pipe wrench (to tighten leaks), flappers (to replace a running toilet), toilet "guts" (these can also wear out) are handy to keep around.  A simple toilet plunger is what we use first to try to clear a clogged sink (although sometimes one has to remove the p-trap under the sink to find the clog).  If that doesn't work I really like the product called "Thrift"; it's pure lye and activated by pouring it into the sink and following it up with boiling water (stand back when you do this).  Some use "snakes" to clear a clog.

Many landlords don't care to address electrical issues but often these might involve replacing an outlet or a light switch that have bit the dust.  Not a difficult job but throw the breaker (and check you've thrown the correct one) before attempting.

And while this sounds strange, keep lightbulbs handy.  Nothing like going into, say a bathroom to address a repair and that light you put in that once held 3 bulbs now has 2 burned out and the tenant hasn't replaced these.  We now make sure to use LED bulbs (Daylight) in all the fixtures prior to a tenant moving in but still these don't last forever.  

@Matthew Rota a couple of things to think about, you'll need to take care of all the areas of the house that create it to be habitable right away (i.e. roof leak/repair, furnace/AC repair, plumbing, Gas and electrical). The more minor stuff that come up that seem to not be an issue at the house for every day use are things at your discretion.  

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Hi Matt, investor from Southeast, MI here, you can expect plumbing, electrical, and no heat calls for which you should have a good team of contractors to handle.  Everything else is pretty basic and you can do yourself in the beginning. 

@Matthew Rota I recommend carrying a small variety of hand tools that will allow you to fix small & easy repairs like a clogged sink, light fixture ect. This will at least save you a trip charge for something you could of fixed in a few minutes. Any repair more advanced you can call a pro