Advice for new landlord



From: Dean Stevens

Afternoon All,

I know it's probably been asked before but I thought there's no harm in it being asked again seeing the wealth of experience that inhabits this site.

It might start an interesting thread for new and veteran IP owners alike. So here it is...

Any general advice (any aspect you wish) for a new landlord?

What have been your biggest mistake(s)?

What would you do differently next time around?

Keep up the good work everyone!


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Reply: 1
From: Jacque Parker

Attend to repairs promptly.
Keep your tenants in the loop ( I don't think the occasional card and free movie tickets would hurt good tenants either).
Make sure you follow up on references.
Be flexible- especially with good tenants!
Maintain a professional but approachable attitude. Don't get too friendly or you may end up feeling so chummy that you begin to overlook things like late payments etc.
Keep a record of every phonecall, correspondence etc. I have a arch lever file and a diary specifically for this.
Enjoy the experience!! Good luck.
Cheers, Jacqueline :)
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Reply: 2
From: Gee Cee Clay

Don't get to know the tenants
Use a agent. Especially if you socialize in the area the rental is.(Tenants will come up to you when you are out to dinner and ask when are you going to come around and tighten the door lock )
Keep a close eye on property yourself.
Keep the rents up to market rate by always making small rental increases.
Don't get soft and succumb to what tenants request all the time. eg I recently had a tenant that said they would move if I did not put the gas on so they can use their gas heater they had. I said No way.
. They moved and i put the rent up $20 and had a new tenant ready to move in as soon as they left. Or the same with the tenant that insisted on all security bars on all windows and doors or they were going. Bye Bye.
Keep property maintained but don't go over the top.
Use agent to pay rates etc but pay the insurance yourself. Don't want the house burnt down only to find out agent forgot to pay the insurance that was due last week.
Keep control but keep ya distance. use the time saved to grow your big knowledge on property and delegate trivial s out.
Realise that there will be problems at some time but try to control them at the initial renting by using a agent, getting references etc. Keep learning as you grow.
My $1.00's worth
Happy investing

Gee Cee
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Reply: 2.1
From: Jacque Parker

I guess I should point out that, generally, I would agree with Cee Cee about getting an agent to do it all. It's easier, more convenient and most of them seem to know what they're doing.
However, it doesn't hurt to be knowledgeable yourself so you are aware of what's going on. I actually only manage one property myself as the tenant is a clean living bachelor who seems (so far) like the ideal tenant. Once he's gone, however, I will be hiring an agent. Just thought I'd do it this once, to save some cash and to learn from the experience. Also, the town he's in is crying out for rentals- people just cannot find a property, so landlords can afford to be choosy here. Good luck! Jacque :)
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Reply: 3
From: Felicity W.

Landlord's Insurance - worth every cent.
I lean towards using property managers too - we've had claims on insurance with both our properties (including evicting a tenant through the courts) and it was great to just get a phone calls every day updating progress, rather than have to do all that ourselves!
Always keep a cash buffer handy, either in bank deposits or in shares if that's your thing, for those months when the rent may not turn up for whatever reason.
Keep smiling
Felicity :cool:
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Reply: 3.1
From: Michele B

All good comments above, esp GCC's advice - "Keep control but keep ya distance. use the time saved to grow your big knowledge on property and delegate trivial s out."

Ponder this one for a while - a real gem.

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Reply: 3.1.1
From: Joanna K

I think the most important thing to keep in mind when conducting any business is to make sure everything is in black and white. Time and time again I have had tenants say "but I had an agreement with the landlord" or something like that. No matter how chummy you want to get with the tenants, keep that slight bit of professionalism happening - it will save a lot of headaches!!

Kind regards

Joanna Karavasilis
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