If you have found and purchased an investment rental property in a neighboring city you may be initially excited about all of its prospects such as – low property cost, high rent, great residents, and only some minor maintenance that needs to be done. It is a bit of a drive, but you figure that 45 minutes each way will be well worth the investment. However, driving costs add up quickly and you may start to rethink your decision.
To begin with, residents do not last forever. The average resident for a single- family residence only last around a year and a half. This could be due to residents purchasing their own homes, moving for a job opportunity, or other life events that can cause a resident to not renew a lease and move out. After the resident leaves, you will need to visit the property to ensure that it is property cleaned and prepared for your next set of tenants. While you can hire professionals, you will still want to document and evaluate the work regardless if you clean it yourself.
Once your resident leaves, you will need to get the property cleaned and prepared for the next tenants. You can hire professionals to do this work, but at the very least you will need to drive to your rental property to do an evaluation of what needs to be done, and then a return trip to ensure that your vendors did the work as expected. If your vendors have missed a few small things, then this may require additional trips on your part.
Advertising your property is the next step in helping make your rental successful, and this again requires you to make that 45-minute drive to your property. Did you remember to take pictures when you inspected your vendors’ work? If not, then you will need to do another trip. Also, for each showing, you will need to make a trip. On average it takes 7 to 15 showings to find a quality and qualified applicant. You could try to schedule multiple showings for the same day(s), but often what works for your schedule does not work for applicants’ schedule, so you can expect to take several trips.
Once you have screened a potential resident and they have signed the lease you will need to make an additional trip for the move-in process. However, residents often have a number of follow up requests soon after moving in, whether it be a question on how to operate the dishwasher to small maintenance requests, and so you will need to plan a handful of trips within the first few weeks after move-in.
Okay, you now have a great new resident who pays the rent on time. Everything goes smoothly for a few months, but then the toilet overflows. Your resident must be at work and is unable to meet the plumber, and so there is another trip for you. No problems for a few more weeks, but then your resident has an altercation with a neighbor over the weekend, and there goes your Sunday. Everything goes smoothly for the next few weeks, but then a fuse blows, but your resident cannot find the fuse box, shutting off the heater in the middle of the winter…and you get a call at 3 am.
That 45-minute drive appeared to be so easy when you first purchased the property, it’s now a drain on not only your time but also the cost of gas, as well as wear and tear on your vehicle. How much is your time worth? That 45-minute drive each way for all the various aspects that you will need to take care of will add up.
Purchasing a property in a neighboring city can be a great investment with the low purchase price, high rent, and solid residents that you had initially anticipated. However, the time and cost of the day-to-day duties can turn that dream investment into a nightmare.
The professionals at Real Property Management California Coast can assist. We will show your investment property to prospective residents, screen applicants and handle the move in, deal with resident emergencies and 3 am phone calls, and attend to maintenance issues. Additionally, we continually attend training in resident-landlord laws, such as fair housing and evictions, plus are licensed and insured to manage your property successfully in compliance with regulations and statutes.
Learn more about the services we offer and contact us today.