So I'm basically going to be inheriting a house from my grandfather in about a year or two. The house is in a nice, established middle class neighborhood. It's a three bedroom house (including the one in the basement) and I'm going to add another out of extremely large laundry room. It's in good shape (as in structurally sound, etc.) but it needs a lot of cosmetic work. Luckily, my dad is a professional handyman and do all of the repairs, remodeling, etc.
I've got a few questions. How tough is it being a landlord? How is living with your tenants? How much should I charge rent? I'm thinking of bundling everything in one package (utilities, room, internet, etc.). Is this a bad idea? Can you guys give me some tips?
I just wanted to mention that the rooms are pretty good sized.
Well I'm mostly going to rent to a few friends. I'm going to be pretty serious about my selection process. I'm going to have to know they're responsible, have steady employment, trustworthy, and all that jazz. I'll be living in the house too. What do you think would be a fair rent price?
I'm going to have a "community room" where I'll set up a tv, a few sofas, and maybe a pool or a foozeball table. They'll have access to the washer, dryer, and kitchen if they choose to use it. And they have a pretty decent sized yard to do other shit it.
Landlord myself. There are no friends, only tenants. Trust me. I f you handle it as a friendly relationship instead of a business one you'll lose money first and then friends. It's not a question of if it's a question of when.
Your friends will own you a lot of money every month. The rent is in most cases one of the largest part of a persons expenses. So if something unexpected happens it's the first thing people try to delay or are unable to pay.
Ask yourself, if friend X suddenly has a accident, will you be able to remind X that the rent is due? Sounds like a asshole I know. But a landlord has expenses too. And while there are protections for tenants who don't pay rent on time there are no cost free protections that save the landlord if he is behind his payments.
Landlord here - don't rent to friends or family - too much hassle and when they inevitably default, you are always seen as the bad guy.
Also if you would rather have as few headaches as possible, use a manager but do occasional checks on the maintenance bills or find trades you are happy with and ask the manager to use them for any maintenance.
You can't be friends with someone who you expect to both give you money on time and take care of what you own. You'll get some people that won't take advantage of it, but most will(some not even realizing it). Most people are entitled. Some people will legitimately fuck something up in your house and refuse to pay rent until it's fixed. You may know someone better than anyone else in the world, but once money is a factor things change.
If you're in or near a major city there are whole management agencies that will handle everything for a percentage of the rent.
Do that. Take your cut of the rent and put it in the bank. Eventually, acquire new property nearby and call that management agency you've got such a good relationship with.
Keep doing this until you have enough passive income that working is purely voluntary.
>find trades you are happy with
This. Or be a handyman yourself. My current tenant is a bit handy and can do simple shit. When the kitchen sink faucet gave out when I was on vacation (the plastic valves with non-serviceable seals leaked and you couldn't buy replacements) I had him replace it himself. I checked his work after and it was good, which is also how I know the previous faucet was Chinese shittier garbage. He paid $95 for a really nice faucet and installed it himself for free. He took the money from the rent payment. I called 4 plumbers and the cheapest one wanted over $140 to install a plastic piece of shit like the one that broke after 6 years.
This. I was best friends with a guy for 8 years and he needed a place to live with his family in an emergency type situation. Of course I let them move in and long story short a month later I was left with a destroyed living room, bathroom and guest bedroom and the guy shorted me forty dollars on the rent. It's been about a year now and I haven't talked to him since.
You guys are making pessimistic about the whole tenant/landlord relationship I'll have with the people I'll be renting to. I really don't like the idea of letting strangers live in the house. If I were to be careful with my tenant choosing process, set up contracts, drill the rules into their head, and be upfront that I get my rent or you get out no exceptions, do you think it could work? Also, I wasn't just going to let any friend of mine stay. A few have already asked who are complete fucking shitholes who I'd never let stay with me, despite being alright friends.
Oh boy, this deluded person.
You have no fucking clue at all what you are talking about in even the slightest bit.
Never ever ever rent to friends and family. They can crash on your couch for a couple weeks, but never charge them rent, nor let them stay any longer than that.
You should also NOT live in the same house as your renters.
These are like nightmare scenarios. Fucking trust me.
This probably isn't the case for a lot of you guys but it may be relevant for some: in some jurisdictions you cannot perform certain trade work outside of your primary residence(you have to own it as well) unless you're a licensed tradesman. For example I could do electrical work in my own home with a permit, but can't do it in a place I am renting out and neither can the tenant.
It'd be more like a roommate situation in my opinion. And of course I'm ignorant about this subject, I've never done it. I've had a roommate before, one where I was in charge of everything because I was more intelligent. It was similar to my idea (in my opinion), because I had to collect bill money, and I was the one who handled it all. That worked out fine, because I didn't choose an untrustworthy retard.
I believe that can happen. In fact, I'm not saying any of you are wrong. I'm not going to deny something could go wrong. I'm not going into this blindly trusting any ole bud that walks up wanting a place to live.
But I'll also be drawing up contracts and be upfront with them about everything. If they want to break any rules or the contract or whatever. They can get the fuck out. If something happens, they need to pay me my rent they can get the fuck out.
See there's your problem right there. Thats not how that works. You have to go through an eviction process which can take months and they can appeal. For real you should not rent a place you live at. And never trust family even in writing. They'll be retarded and ignore the agreement.
Security deposit equal to 2 months rent, plus first and last month rent up front. Credit score of at least 700. Pass a criminal background check as well.
If they can't provide these, DO NOT rent to them.
Most best renters are empty nest snow birds - only there for six or so months but pay rent all year.
it's hard to do when friends or family is involved but especially family. nothing will ruin a relationship faster then someone getting fucked over. you either call them on shit and end up hating each other or you become a fucking punching bag just putting up with their shit
I appreciate the concern Anon, I'll most likely not being renting to family because my family are responsible and have steady incomes (it's alright being Jewish sometimes). But I don't mind renting to friends. I won't put up with their bullshit because I'll be the one getting fucked in the ass. I've had friends shit me over in smalls ways in the past and even that really sours your trust among people. But I won't take it because I've become a realist and too much is at stake in this world for me.
>I wander if that Anon had contracts.
Contracts are hard to enforce. Even if you go to court and win, you still may not get your money, and court costs/ time will hardly be worth it.
>Also, no kids will be allowed to stay there.
But that's discrimination anon.
Okay? It's going to be my house. I'll either rent out the entire basement out or I'll rent out rooms.
>Contracts are hard to enforce. Even if you go to court and win, you still may not get your money, and court costs/ time will hardly be worth it.
You're right about the headache it will be but I will win if I have a contract that has been broken.
>How tough is it being a landlord?
It's only as difficult as your tenants make it.
>How is living with your tenants?
You should not share living space with tenants. Otherwise you are roommates, not landlord/tenant.
>How much should I charge rent?
Research the local rental market and find a comparable offering and determine what the going rate is per square foot. Base your offering on that plus whatever other amenities you are offering such as utilities, parking, etc.
>I'm thinking of bundling everything in one package (utilities, room, internet, etc.).
This is fine so long as it is stipulated clearly in the contract and you provide them within limitations of use.
>Can you guys give me some tips?
Many people have already offered some useful tips. Let's see some of those.
>You guys are making pessimistic about the whole tenant/landlord relationship I'll have with the people I'll be renting to.
That's just how it is. It's business relationship, not a friendship.
>Well I'm mostly going to rent to a few friends.
No. You should never rent to friends. They are more likely to take advantage of you in ways that could undermine your friendship.
> I'm going to be pretty serious about my selection process.
Require that every prospective tenant be required to submit to a background check. There are plenty of companies that offer this as a service ranging in price from $60 to $100. It's an invaluable requirement because it provides you a means to avoid tenants with bad credit or criminal backgrounds.
>Why would I not take them to court? That's the point of the contract. IF they break it, sue them.
Taking anyone to court requires an investment in time and money in order to go through the legal process. The process for eviction of a tenant varies considerably in each state.
>But I don't mind renting to friends.
Still a bad idea.
I have been renting the apartment above my detached garage for the past 4 years.
To Be Continued
I have been renting the apartment above my detached garage for the past 4 years. It's 400 square feet total including a full bath and 100 sq foot kitchen and laundry service in a closet. It came with a 10x6 deck until recently due to an addition on my house.
Monthly rent includes all utilities, internet, and one assigned parking spot.
First tenants were supposed to be temporary:
relatives of a coworker, his daughter, her husband, and their toddler. I was not informed that the daughter was pregnant when they moved in and it later turned out that the mother in-law was staying up their 3 days out of the week.
I wasn't charging enough money for this number of people and the rental agreement did not allow nor provide for semi-permanent guests. They took advantage of me, damaged a few parts of the apartment, consumed a ton of water and electricity through laundry.
After only the first few months I wanted them out. They were late paying rent 3 months during the first year and I asked them to voluntarily vacate. I returned half of their security deposit.
My coworker hates his son in-law and his mom so he doesn't hold any grudges about the situation.
After spending $13,000 (one year of planned rental rate) renovating the apartment myself by redoing the kitchen, replacing the flooring, replacing the appliances, and repairing the deck I put it back up for rent.
Second tenant: Passed background check, single male working for a commercial cleaning company. Had very good credit and was planning to rent for one year. He was very quiet, paid on-time, and moved out promptly after his lease was up.
Third tenant: Also passed background check and has perfect credit. Has now been renting the apartment for nearly two years. Even quieter than second tenant and a really nice person. Has never been late paying rent. He has been away on trips several times but paid in advance for those time periods prior to leaving.
I gave the third tenant a discount in his rent for two months during construction on an addition to my home. Construction has removed his deck so I am considering reducing his rent partially from now on.
He has been such an easy tenant that I have zero complaints.
Prior to buying this house I have had several roommates and sublets. For all of those I also required a background check and that has been an invaluable method of selecting desirable tenants.
For sublets and roommates I always made sure to isolate their living spaces from mine as much as was feasible through the addition of extra walls or doors. The mindset of having privacy changes how the roommates approach the involved relationship.
The more space they share the less respect they seem to offer and the less serious they take the relationship.
$300 in materials and labor to add an extra wall and a door made a huge difference.
My friend from college lived in a rental property his parents owned. Every time something happened they went bitching to him. He didn't own the property, he didn't see a cent of the rent. Yet everything was always on him because his dad owned the property.
Since you're a whiny teenager who thinks he knows better than all the other anons telling him otherwise; I have some advice. NEVER TELL THE OTHER TENANTS YOU OWN THE PROPETY! Renters hate their landlords as a rule of thumb. So your landlord is now "a guy your dad works with" or some shit. Mr Johnson is a real fucking asshole and will kick you on the street for late payments. You even heard he has ties to the fucking mexican drug cartel. He requires a single check that you write out to him each month.
Heh, your old roommate let you think you were smarter so you wouldn't be mad about doing the bitch work and he wouldn't have to do jack. Paying bills on time ain't hard. This is a situation where you were taken advantage of. It's the same thing as when someone is in a relationship and they pretend they're terrible at cooking or cleaning or whatever to make their significant other do it of their own free will. I convinced my co-worker my hand writing is terrible so he does all the paperwork, it's been going on for 3 years.
Landlords have every right, at least in my state, to refuse potential tenants if they have children. Same with pets, other than registered service animals.
It's not discrimination. Discrimination would be saying 'No Mexicans/Blacks/Jews/Irish/et cetera'.
I can give you some advice, for the past 4 years I have been the property manager of this house I live in. I know the landlord personally and we always paid rent every month without fail. Because of this, and because we didn't trash the house, he lets us do literally whatever.
It's in a college town. What the other guy said about not being friends is correct. I am similar to age to the tenants but it doesn't work out to make friends.
Pic attached is the result of trying to "be friends" with hte first tenant I brought in. He spent his days fapping and getting blasted on his hookah. I tolerated him because he paid on time without fail.
My process is usually to post on craigslist. Empthasize it's quiet, low energy and no drama/parties. College students paying with student loan money usually pay reliably on time. Students working jobs to pay through college always have problems paying on time, they might have great work ethic but can't come up with the money. This happens again and again.
ALWAYS get a security deposit + first month rent. This is NON NEGOTIABLE. No matter how likable the person is. Trust me, I have learned the hard way. You have to take a firm stance and you will be respected for it.
If you are having trouble getting paid for rent, it is CHEAPER AND EASIER to pay them $200 to move out immediately. "Blah blah, I know you're having a rough time, here's some money to find a new place". Bam, problem solved.
Have some sort of bullshit renter's agreement they sign. It will keep honest people honest, costs nothing, and fuckups won't honor it anyway. It makes things more official and gives you leverage.
Have regular and consistent dates you want your money by. Do not finance people. Most people will magically find some money when you politely but firmly remind them what you need. Be predictable with your money so that people have fewer excuses.
As for how much to charge... if you are like me and collect the money to send to the landlord (even if you ARE the landlord you should hide it and paint him as the bogeyman) you will want to charge at least 20% premium over what it actually costs. This is because I've found I lose about 20% of that money a year based on bullshit like people "moving" (read, they bail and somehow forget to pay the last 2 months).
If you have no renting costs you can decide what your cost should be based on similar properties in the area.
Disallow behavior done by poor people. Ban smoking, pets, and live in girlfriends. Foreign students can be good as long as they aren't indian (I'm not shitting you, indian house mates are the fucking worst)
I see your shitty tenant refuse pics and raise you. I and one other person had the displeasure of cleaning this apartment for over 16 hours. They left food in the fridge/freezer and the unit had to be replaced. Inside doors were torn from their hinges. Massive piles of kid's clothing about waist high were moldering everywhere. Everything was sticky and grimy. All those bags you see in the kitchen are what we had already picked up before taking photos. Because kids where involved the renter couldn't be evicted for 6 months. So, they had 6 months to find a new place, pack up, and move. And this is the state of the place after leaving. The stench was overpowering. Cigarettes, soured clothing, rotten food, dirty diapers, etc.
They were sued for damages and settled out of court. fyi.
depends on the indians/shitskin variety
ones from middle class households who work are great. ones from upper class families where they have ten maids on standby to lick their assholes clean are the worst. lived with some saudis once, holy shit, mess everywhere all the time. rich shitskins will just shit to the side of the toilet or on the seat just because they feel its their duty to give the slaves something to do.
That's fine if you have time to spare but I charge more for my time than a sparky, plumber or whatever so it makes more sense for me to pay an expert (aus and trades are licensed) than do the work myself.
Nasty - I had a tenant from hell. All good for 6 months then payment dried up and after 3 months of hassle an court proceedings she disappeared leaving me with £3k of damage - even ripped classic wood framed fireplaces out. Single bitches with kid(s) are the worst
Familial discrimination is illegal in the US. That's a federal law. Every single state. If you break that you deal with the federal justice system. Also do you have your rental license? You're going to need that. City has to approve your house for being rented. It's going to need to get inspected, everything is going to need to be put up to code, by licensed contractors.
Well OP ans dear anons... I was in opposite situation once in England. Nightmare landlords are real. I've seen things that I wish I would never see again. I learned that people no matter the age can be degraded to such low-life creature that I wonder why anyone would want to have kids with them at any given time.
I don't feel like story time but I can list few things I witnessed.
>old English guy - drinks, smokes, stinks, spits on the floor indoors and after he shit he would toss used toilet paper in the bin next to the toilet seat.
>old English landlord - smokes weed/hookers/drinks/cannot make any repairs himself neither call someone to fix things
>he used to say something about that big guy cousin of his (never saw him in my life) if he must - Probably to get rent from old guy no. 1
>drunk/high hookers breaking bottles on kitchen floor, smokes indoors
>Portugese guy no. 3 - smokes weed/drinks (actually only wine and in moderation), hookers - he shared one of them with our landlord - she would service one after another in one day.
>Port was probably dealer - shady cars and interests besides the house.
>a lot of temporary guys from Hungary, Poland, some other countries.
>police on weekly basis checking for some people I never heard of
>rats, insects, rotten old mattress outside
>no parking places
>some old English lady next doors coming on weekly basis to let her hate flow on whoever opens the door because of some gate that should be closed at all time or something
>Outside of the house has shit stains on the wall facing the street - allegedly some angry mate threw some shit at house after he left the place
>fucking cold in the winter time (or is it called rains-and-floods-more-season?)
>some young Ports coming to use our shared washing machine - relatives to old Port guy
>mentally unstable people are only people that landlord would invite (he was living with me at the time)
>mental people confirmed later by police - that was the time I left the flat and changed job
You can't just convert a laundry room to a bedroom. Consider egress. If you rent out a room that has no egress you can be held at fault for injury and death.
Having rented out the rooms of my house for 10 years before getting married Ive got plenty of experience. My first bit of advice is to not rent out to your friends. It always adds a level of tension when rent is due. "Come on man I'll just be a week late on my rent" and thats expected to be ok because you're 'friends'
The best people by far to rent to are construction workers. i.e. framers, electricians, and plumbers. They leave early in the morning, come back later in the evening, make dinner and crash, and always pay their rent on time. ALWAYS. I never had a construction worker pay rent late. They come and go as they move from site to site and generally behave themselves for your good reference and the possibility of moving back in when they come back to the area.
People who rent rooms generally don't want the commitment of a lease and prefer a simple single rental rate than sitting around like college room mates divying up the bills. They'll tend to be with you between 3-8 months at a time.
Since you said you're inheriting the house I would assume that its been paid off in full? Figure out what the property taxes have been for the last few years, estimate your yearly utilities and upkeep costs to run the house. Rent out enough rooms to cover these expenses and maybe a little more. Don't look at it as a way to 'make money' but to offset your living expenses.
If you do rent out rooms I suggest an absolute maximum of three rooms. Beyond that and normal people will avoid being crammed in like that and you'll only get lower quality individuals interested i.e. druggies.
And I highly reccomend the addage cleanliness is next to godliness. Make it crystal clear that dishes need to be rinsed and put in the dish washer or washed right after use. And that the common rooms need to be kept tidy.
All the ads in the paper here say at least, "no pets, no one under 18". I've run a few rental properties for over a decade. Everyone does it like that. I only know of 2 places that allow children. I also know one that explicitly says in their ad in the paper, "no blacks, no lgbt, no atheists." No one cares.
>by licensed contractors.
Not where I live. No one is allowed to or is required to inspect inside buildings here. They actually don't want to. All inspections are done outside. Like for gas, sewer, water, and electric hooks up to the sidewalk or to the meter, but nothing else.
The only thing different is insurance and they don't even come to the house. You just send them a text and photo to their phone of things you've added on or just the outside of the building.
Where do you live, Commiefornia? Where I live people are real and do what they want to do.
>Familial discrimination is illegal in the US. That's a federal law. Every single state. If you break that you deal with the federal justice system. Also do you have your rental license? You're going to need that. City has to approve your house for being rented. It's going to need to get inspected, everything is going to need to be put up to code, by licensed contractors.
You live in a really weird place.
None of that is true in Virginia.
>You're right about the headache it will be but I will win if I have a contract that has been broken.
Don't be so sure about that. Your word by itself isn't worth shit and good look proving they are responsible for something or getting someone else to testify in your favour.
You'll probably end up paying the costs of the trial (if it ever gets to that) and your relationship with your friends gone to shit (and with them breaking shit in your house out of spite to boot)
my best friend of fifteen years and I are both well aware that we cannot live in the same house.
i would trust this guy with just about everything, but we just aren't compatible roommates.
Nah. the way it's generally run is landlord reimburses for money spent on the rent. And yeah, it can be a concern if tenant say, paints room pink, or buy's $3k fridge and wants to take it out of rent, but only allowed if landlord ok's it or if tenant can't get a response for a critical issue (and again, only for receipts paid).
9/10 it's tenant gets plumber because flooding and takes money out of rent because he couldn't get ahold of landlord. So yeah no, can cost you money (expensive plumber fee taken out of rent instead of cheap usual one), but the tenant doesn't end up with it.
That said, I have heard of shithole apartments where tenants intentionally break stuff so they can make landlord pay for a new one that they can use. But that's rare.
You are mistaken. 30 days notice to evict. Some states require longer, eg. California 60 days if they've lived there for >1y. If they have not left voluntarily, you must serve notice of a lawsuit (note, actually have to serve notice/hire a process server), wait for a court date, win the court case (Here's where the tenant gets to appeal the eviction, for all sorts of grounds, including claiming that you said you'd let them be 3 months late on the rent, or that they paid you in cash at your request, or that they withheld rent for major repairs they had to do on the property for you, or w/e. although if the tenant doesn't show up, you win automatically), get a writ of possession issued, present it to a LEO, who will serve notice of removal on such and such a date, LEO does removal.
Oh, and then you have to store any property left behind for 30 days. You can sell it to recover costs (and owe tenant any overage that results) if you've attempted to notify tenant with written notice at least 14 days before sale.
And that's before any of the weird state laws or special cases, like if someone declares bankruptcy they can't be evicted for not paying rent while the court is working on it (can be 6-7 months). Or Massachusetts has an odd law where the tenant can claim whatever code violation that they fixed, but doesn't have to prove it until the court date. Which is delayed by any new code violations.
virginia landlord here.
Its def the law here.
We got fucked over a few times by people who caused massive damage to wood floors by keeping a dog inside that would just pee all over it.
They skipped town and even if we could have sued them there's no way they would have had the money to pay for the repair.