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Old 02-24-2013, 09:56 AM
 
5,658 posts, read 8,767,561 times
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I'm giving serious thought to buying a second and eventually a third home in NKY and then rent out two while I live in the third. Does anyone on this board own homes and then rent them out to area tenants? If so, I'd like to hear what kind of experiences you've had. I'd be buying homes that would cater to entry level tenants, in the $500 a month or so category. I assume that might be the going rate for a small, one or two bedroom home in Covington.
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Old 02-24-2013, 10:19 AM
 
Location: Lebanon
204 posts, read 275,262 times
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I have had rentals for most of the past 30 years, first in Michigan and now in greater Cincinnati. Right now I have just one, a 1300 square foot frame house with 3 bedrooms and one bath in Lebanon that I rent for $750. For us, owning rentals has been profitable and relatively trouble-free, though there are some headaches that come with being a landlord. I once owned a multi-family and that was a better moneymaker but seemed to attract more challenging renters, so i think you are smart to aim for single family rentals.

My best renters are people in transition. My current tenant was a former homeowner coming out of a divorce and trying to start over. For me that's perfect. I'd rather have a former (and future) homeowner than someone who has rented all their lives because in my experience the former owners take more pride in their home and keep the place up. I always check references, and when I show a house I like to walk the prospective tenants to their car because looking at a person's car tells you a lot about them. An unwashed beater full of McDonald's bags equals no go on the lease.

I did have one eviction, a long time ago, of a tenant I inherited when I bought the place, but it was fairly easy. Otherwise I have had no real bad experiences and have met a lot of good and interesting people who have rented my houses.

House prices have been so attractive lately that I have thought about buying more, but I just don't have the energy. Good luck with yours.
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Old 02-25-2013, 11:25 AM
 
Location: canada
294 posts, read 407,079 times
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Yikes , Scott good thing I own as I might not make a good tennant. What if the person has a nice new car, with fast food bags and in need of a car wash ? ! My son is always telling me to go to the car wash but I hate them. ( yet he leaves the fast food bags in it - Wendy's )

On HGTV they tell landlords to check out the car, too. Do you get a show hosted by Scott McGillvary called Real Renos? He does amazing renos in the Toronto area and his motto is "Takin' cheques to the bank "
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Old 02-25-2013, 11:32 AM
 
Location: Cincinnati
4,007 posts, read 4,834,906 times
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I do credit and background checks, I check work references, talk to previous landlords, and am very selective to avoid folks with prior evictions. I also like to meet with them a couple times in person to make sure I like them. Not on a personal friendship level, but just to make sure they are solid people.
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Old 02-25-2013, 08:18 PM
 
2,886 posts, read 3,958,396 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TomJones123 View Post
I do credit and background checks, I check work references, talk to previous landlords, and am very selective to avoid folks with prior evictions. I also like to meet with them a couple times in person to make sure I like them. Not on a personal friendship level, but just to make sure they are solid people.
This is probably the area where I messed up the most in my abortive attempt as a rental property owner. I thought I'd been around the block a few times, but I certainly underestimated the lengths some tenants will go to to scr*w over a landlord. It was an expensive lesson.
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Old 02-25-2013, 10:37 PM
 
5,658 posts, read 8,767,561 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Scott SW Ohio View Post
I have had rentals for most of the past 30 years, first in Michigan and now in greater Cincinnati. Right now I have just one, a 1300 square foot frame house with 3 bedrooms and one bath in Lebanon that I rent for $750. For us, owning rentals has been profitable and relatively trouble-free, though there are some headaches that come with being a landlord. I once owned a multi-family and that was a better moneymaker but seemed to attract more challenging renters, so i think you are smart to aim for single family rentals.

My best renters are people in transition. My current tenant was a former homeowner coming out of a divorce and trying to start over. For me that's perfect. I'd rather have a former (and future) homeowner than someone who has rented all their lives because in my experience the former owners take more pride in their home and keep the place up. I always check references, and when I show a house I like to walk the prospective tenants to their car because looking at a person's car tells you a lot about them. An unwashed beater full of McDonald's bags equals no go on the lease.

I did have one eviction, a long time ago, of a tenant I inherited when I bought the place, but it was fairly easy. Otherwise I have had no real bad experiences and have met a lot of good and interesting people who have rented my houses.

House prices have been so attractive lately that I have thought about buying more, but I just don't have the energy. Good luck with yours.
Thanks for the detailed information. I am taking notes and plan to save your suggestions.
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Old 02-25-2013, 10:39 PM
 
5,658 posts, read 8,767,561 times
Reputation: 2365
Quote:
Originally Posted by TomJones123 View Post
I do credit and background checks, I check work references, talk to previous landlords, and am very selective to avoid folks with prior evictions. I also like to meet with them a couple times in person to make sure I like them. Not on a personal friendship level, but just to make sure they are solid people.
Thanks. If I decide to do this I will be sure to thoroughly check out any potential applicants by using your ideas and those that Scott suggested. I thought a property management company might be a good way to go because someone with considerable experience could weed out the bad people quickly. I'd have to see what kind of cut they would want before making that decision.
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Old 02-26-2013, 06:06 AM
 
2,886 posts, read 3,958,396 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WILWRadio View Post
Thanks. If I decide to do this I will be sure to thoroughly check out any potential applicants by using your ideas and those that Scott suggested. I thought a property management company might be a good way to go because someone with considerable experience could weed out the bad people quickly. I'd have to see what kind of cut they would want before making that decision.
If you don't go with a management company, also make sure you can either do minor maintenance and repairs yourself, or that you know people who can do them dependably and at a reasonable price. That can be a tall order when you're new to town.
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Old 02-26-2013, 07:22 AM
 
Location: Cincinnati
4,007 posts, read 4,834,906 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WILWRadio View Post
I thought a property management company might be a good way to go because someone with considerable experience could weed out the bad people quickly. I'd have to see what kind of cut they would want before making that decision.
They usually charge around 10% of the rent per month. I haven't worked with one personally, but looked into it recently and know people who do use them. As I understand, a lot of companies will work you over pretty good with fees and such. Listing fees, showing fees, maintenance fees, and of course they will hit you pretty for a larger ticket item such as replacing a new hot water heater.

For me, it would be the trade off between time and money. If you have time to do things yourself, I think you would keep more of your money. You could also work with them to get it rented for you and then manage things month to month. Then make sure it's understood if anything major happens you want to have the option to fix it yourself.
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