1st Rental property

4 Replies

looking to buy first rental property this year, just wanted to ask for any advice out there thank you 

Originally posted by @Jay Rincon :

looking to buy first rental property this year, just wanted to ask for any advice out there thank you 

Hey Jay congrats on your decision to buy your first rental property. I copied and pasted the information below from the "learn" tab listed above. This is a great way to get started. We are all here to help so if you have a specific question just ask and we will help you. Enjoy learning as you get started. 

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I would say, think in terms of systems and processes.  Learn the ins and out of landlording, and create your own system from what you learn.  

Decide if you'll manage your property yourself, use a property manager, or a combination.  If a property manager is involved, make sure you stay involved and informed.  Make them earn your trust.  Even then, watch your asset like a hawk.

Do competitive analysis of other rentals in your neighborhood.  Do a little mystery shopping.  Play the roll of a tenant, and call them up.  Find out what they offer and for how much.  Discover your advantages, and disadvantages and set your rent accordingly.   Find out what you can upgrade to give you an advantage to charge more.

Don't take anything personal with tenants.  Any favor you do for a tenant, will quickly be forgotten (No good deed goes unpunished).   Also don't get personal with tenants.  Be kind friendly and courteous, but stay professional.

Expect every tenant to love you in the beginning, and loath you in the end.  The majority landlord tenant relationships don't end this way, but if does, you're prepared.

Let your tenants know how you handle emergencies.  And, what's considered an emergency.  Managing expectations can sooth tempers and frustration.  

Don't answer calls after a set time, and on holidays.  I personally screen all my calls, so my tenants know to either leave a message or to text me.  This will greatly reduce the Pavlovian stress of tenant calls.

SCREEN YOUR TENANTS...background checks, employment verification, check references etcetera.  An empty rental is better than having the wrong tenant.

Get familiar with the cost of repairs, labor, and parts.  Sometimes, in the long run,  it's cheaper to replace something, rather than fixing it. 

Handymen are cost effective for small jobs.   But they have limitations.  However use licensed pros for big jobs like AC work, electrical work, etc.  Otherwise you get what you pay for.

Never rent to a handyman.  they'll try to trade work for rent, and will always feel you got the better half of the deal.

Cut your losses quickly and evict when necessary. 

Maintain your properties condition in line with the quality of tenants you want.  

I think the first step is to find a property and buy it. If the numbers are going to work you can figure everything else out later.

Actually I think the first step is figuring out who you want to rent to.  That will influence what type of house you want to buy and how much you are willing to spend.  Then decide if you want to rehab or buy turn key. THEN buy your house.

I rent to guys in rehab.  By the room.  I want a house with 4 - 5 rooms and at least 2 baths (3 is better or a place to put a 3rd).  We give each guy their own room (this differentiates us as most go at least 2 to a room).  We furnish.  We pay utililaties.  We require sober living.

A guy I saw speak the other day rents to Section 8.  Note:  if you wait 6 years on a list to get a house you're not going to trash it.  However, Section 8 requires inspections, they are picky picky picky about little things, BUT you get regular monthly payments.  If I did this I would look at 3/2 single family homes in median areas.

Another guy rents to government workers (I'm close to DC).  Not so much size as location.

See what I mean?

Good luck!

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