Most people purchase one house to live in, unlike an investor who buys and rents property for a living. For many people, their home is full of great memories, and it can be difficult to separate those feelings from the potential financial gains. As you begin to place your house for rent, it is important to separate the emotional connection from the financial one. After all, you can’t put a price on those great memories.
Start Thinking Like an Investor
This is the #1 secret to becoming a successful landlord! Congratulations! You are now a real estate investor! And as an investor, you'll need to think of your investments like a business. In business, you have to be willing to spend money to make money and keep your business running. As a property investor, you will need to plan for maintenance expenses and late rent. You will need to keep your insurance and warranties up to date. You will need to maintain a network of vendors and lawyers to help you fix maintenance or legal issues. You will need to understand that you will never have a renter that will take care of your house as well as you did. Changing your mindset about your property can dramatically improve your experience as a landlord.
One great way to prepare yourself as an investor is to keep a rental property emergency fund. Set aside an amount that can cover emergencies like late rent or HVAC repairs. You can find a good explanation of a landlord emergency fund here.
Another way to improve your investor mindset is to learn to appreciate your tenants. Many times, tenants are great and will take great care of your property. Other times, they are hard on the house and some repair is needed. But either way, you should appreciate them for paying down your mortgage and saving you vacancy costs. Being respectful to tenants and responding promptly to their maintenance requests will give them a better experience, making them want to stay longer, and ultimately saving your from finding another renter.
If you are a new investor, or maybe you don't have a local network of vendors to help you maintain your property, you may want to consider hiring a property manager to handle the day-to-day management of your investment property. Making sure that your property manager will look out for your investment is an important key in hiring a property manager. For more tips about hiring one, head here.