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Guest Post: Who spends all weekend working on rentals?

September 28, 2014

Valerie gives me ideas for new posts, but I finally talked her into writing some too. So here is her post:

When people find out that I am a landlord, they are surprised that I don’t spend all weekend working on my rentals.  Why would I want to do that?! Maybe when I am retired that kind of sounds fun, but right now I have a full-time job and a family. I have found that doing the following helps cut down on time spent working on my rentals:

1. Keep the rent below market for the area. This ensures that my tenants will not find a lower-priced rental house in my area, so they don’t look. They know a good deal when they see it, and they know they have a good deal. The first house that got me into the rental business taught me this lesson, and that house has never turned over since I first leased it. The fewer vacancies I have means the less work for me (and more money).

2.  Never raise the rent while the current tenants occupy the house with good payment history.  At lease renewal time, I emphasize to the tenants that their good payment history has earned them no rental increases for the coming year. After I do this for several years, tenants get the picture – they pay the rent on time. However, if they don’t have good payment history I know exactly how to get them to move. Again, my goal here is fewer vacancies which equates to less work for me.

3.  Never mow, edge, weed eat, take the trash to the curb, or do anything at the rentals that the tenants should be doing themselves. If it goes without being done after multiple warnings to the tenants, hire someone cheap to do it and charge the tenants for it. This might mean taking it out of their security deposit when they move out. You will not ever see me mowing my tenant’s yard on a Saturday morning while they sleep in. My husband has been known to take his weed eater over “real quick” just to knock down the “tall stuff”. He comes back 3 hours later, exhausted, weed eater in pieces. [Um…Yeah no comment…] The moral of the story – hire it out. I do not spend my weekend doing my tenant’s yard work. If I want to do yard work – I do it in my own yard.

Now all of this does not mean I never spend time at my rentals. In my next post I will tell you how I spend what I would call “quality” time at my rentals, and I spend the rest of the weekend doing what I want to do with my husband and family!

From → Landlord

  1. I totally agree with these points. I have managed single family homes in DFW since 2002. Tenant turnover can be very expensive and can costs you more than you get from rent increases. Good Post.

  2. I spend a considerable time in my rentals when I am doing a rehab. Especially after a bad tenants. Luckily, I have not had a bad tenant in a while,

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