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Old 08-10-2009, 06:43 PM
 
Location: Vermont
1,442 posts, read 6,265,931 times
Reputation: 452

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Quote:
Originally Posted by looking4home View Post
Yeah, I wanted to echo the above sentiments, and also add, even if your zoning permitted it, would you really want people living in trailers on your property? My mom and her husband lived on 10 acres in the foothills of the Sierra Nevadas in Northen CA, and she had people living in rented trailers on the acreage that abutted their property. They were... ummm, how should I put this nicely? Oh, I can't, so I won't!

I would not want to rent to, shall we say, problematic people, although sometimes you don't know they are problematic until much later. Renting can have its horror stories. I have heard a few. But the rural property is close to a graduate school that attracts high caliber students from all over the world. Those are the people I would want to rent the trailers to. I have heard, though, that the students want to rent places in town, where they are near to town amenities. But maybe some would want to be in a rural place, or close to school.

Actually, I would prefer that tenants live in a separate building from me, for the very reason arctichomesteader spoke about, namely, fire. The thought of that is very frighening.

But renting can be a necessity. I want the security of multiple income streams. I've heard that in Vermont, you earn a living in any way you can. At least if you rent out, you can cover most or all of your living expenses, and, in effect, have free housing. Of course, there is work, and sometimes there are headaches, but if you don't want to deal with them you can hire a property manager. The property manager, at least one I spoke to last year or the year before, takes about 10% of the rent of the rent each month. In return, he or she screens tenants, deals with repairs, and deals with problematic tenants.

Also, I want to consult with an attorney about how to quickly get rid of people who engage in criminal, rowdy or otherwise problematic behavior. I have to learn about month to month renting as opposed to leases, and I need to be able to craft a rental agreement or lease that says that criminal and rowdy behavior will not be tolerated. Drugs, domestic violence, or other criminal behavior will get a tenant evicted. Maybe if I am an owner-occupier, I would have more control than I would if I were just a non-resident landlord.

The learning curve continues.......
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Old 08-11-2009, 08:11 AM
 
1,135 posts, read 2,272,831 times
Reputation: 1503
Quote:
Originally Posted by arel View Post

But renting can be a necessity. I want the security of multiple income streams. I've heard that in Vermont, you earn a living in any way you can. At least if you rent out, you can cover most or all of your living expenses, and, in effect, have free housing. Of course, there is work, and sometimes there are headaches, but if you don't want to deal with them you can hire a property manager. The property manager, at least one I spoke to last year or the year before, takes about 10% of the rent of the rent each month. In return, he or she screens tenants, deals with repairs, and deals with problematic tenants.
..
I would not consider buying a property if renting out part of it will be necessary in order for you to pay your mortgage. This is very risky. Even a stellar tenant can lose a job in this economy, leaving him/her unable to cover next month's rent. You would still have to pay the full mortgage amount.

I'm not saying that rental income is a bad thing, it's just not something you should depend on when deciding whether or not to buy a property. And as far as rowdy, criminal tenants are concerned, they can be very difficult to evict because of the state's renters' rights laws. I had a friend who unknowingly rented to a convicted child molester. When she found out about his background, she had a really tough time kicking him out. I have another friend who lost two to three months rent while her tenant went to court to fight her evictions. You can't just kick someone out on the street, especially if they have kids, even if the rent is way past due.

Not trying to scare you. I just want you to make your decision knowing the obstacles you could face as a landlord.

Good luck!
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Old 08-11-2009, 08:21 AM
 
Location: The Woods
18,088 posts, read 25,004,663 times
Reputation: 10894
Lisa is right Arel, the renting laws are decidedly in favor of the tenants and the bad ones will usually know this and stretch things out. There's no quick evictions typically.
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Old 08-11-2009, 10:54 AM
 
Location: Vermont
1,475 posts, read 3,974,138 times
Reputation: 847
Quote:
Originally Posted by arel View Post
I'd be afraid of rolling off my driveway at night and rolling down the steep hill next to it. I've been warned that the area is pitch black at night. .
Yes our hilly driveway has been more of a cost financially and mentally then I anticipated. The plowing bill is $400 to $800 annually , I knew that. We also have to put a few hundred dollars worth of gravel on it every couple of years. Our gravel is pretty worn down and the land on the side of the driveway needs a crowning job to ensure the melted snow drains off the side of the driveway. I don't have the thousand dollars to really shape my driveway correctly so the water goes down the driveway on to the private street where it causes divets(sp?), much to the chagrin of my neighbors.. On certain occasions, when we have a very warm day followed by a very cold day, the water freezes on the driveway,because it doesn't drain properly, and it's a real challenge to get even the 4wd up the driveway. On some days we can't. Walking down the frozen driveway can be very challenging even with a lot of care. I've driven down the iced driveway withe had no control of the car whatsoever for a few seconds. Luckily our private road isn't busy. The previous owner of our house did slide down our driveway, across the road, and then down our neighbor's front yard.

It's been quite a pain and one of those expensive costs you just don't know about until you move.
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Old 08-11-2009, 11:25 AM
 
Location: Vermont
1,442 posts, read 6,265,931 times
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It's like that in New York, too. I have a friend who rented to Section 8 tenants and she had a terrible time with them. She dealt with vandalism, drugs, and problematic visitors.

I would have to consult with a lawyer in order to draft a rental agreement that allows me to evice tenants for criminal behavior, including fraud in obtaining the apartment (e.g. lying about background, false references, etc.) I would also ask about a history of lawsuits or pending lawsuits. I remember hearing that one property I was briefly interested in, a couple of years ago, had a "problematic tenant" who liked to sue people.

Right now, there are very good tenants in the house. If I lived there, sadly, I'd have to evict the ones in the larger unit. And I would have to raise the rent, as the rents there are unfairly low.

And I think that if I am an owner-occupier, I'd have more flexiibility than I would as a non-resident landlord who held the property only as an investment property. But I have to consult with a lawyer and with other renters and property managers about this matter. The last thing I want are problematic people living on my property, especially if they are tenants in the house I live in.

I like my space to be my space. I don't want headaches on my own turf. I don't want to be stressed in my own home. I really do have to think carefully about whether I want to rent or not. But it may be a necessary evill. Jobs and businesses can be stressful, too. And the time usually comes when one cannot work anymore, or doesn't want to. Or there may be a temporary preiod when one can't or chooses not to work. Then you need a more passive source of income. Rent isn't as passive as an inheritance or social security, but it is more passive than a job.
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Old 08-12-2009, 01:49 PM
 
892 posts, read 2,767,692 times
Reputation: 602
It sounds as if you're planning way ahead. you currently have a good job, right? will you receive retirement benefits,etc. in addition to s.s.? I don't know what your situation is, or how close you are to retirement, but you should weigh other options before choosing to become a landlord. The renter/landlord relationship is hellish, and I've heard horror stories from both sides. By the way, any legal agreement you draft with a lawyer would still be trumped in a court by the state's renter's rights. That's the way it is here, anyway (CA).
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Old 08-12-2009, 09:00 PM
 
98 posts, read 187,118 times
Reputation: 173
Oh My! 4+ acres, "bear scary" stories, yes friend you need to find a nice little suburb, as 4 acres, in my opinion, is wayyyy too small to think about subdivision! I have 5 acres now, on the market, that is too small for my comfort. I prefer a dirt road, as I understand what to expect. Invest in a 4 wheeler, with good traction wheels, carry "provisions" to last a couple to a few days. Also, be sure to carry a sharp pocket knife with a blade bigger than to just clean your nails! Yes, again, if a polecat or foraging deer scares the pants off, better go for a quaint suburb type homestead. Grow a garden and invest in a few hen baby birds, aka, "pullets". But do make sure 1/2 to 1 acre is thought about and check local zoning laws. Land, in my opinion, does not need any further subdivision for more housing!
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