8 ways to make your life easier as a property investor
Investing in property can be a lucrative way to build wealth and diversify your portfolio. But it can also be stressful to manage property as a landlord – and find new properties to acquire. When you’re first starting out, you’ll be dealing with your own inexperience and struggling to find the “perfect” additions to your portfolio. And after getting your first tenants, you’ll then be responsible for maintaining the property, responding to tenant requests, and possibly dealing with issues like late rent payments.
Ultimately, this can add up to hours of wasted time and mountains of extra stress. So how can you make your life easier as a property investor?
How to make your life easier as a property investor
These strategies can all save you time and reduce your stress as a property investor:
1. Hire a property management company
First, consider hiring a property management company. A property management company will be responsible for taking care of the property in most ways. They’ll help you market the property and find tenant applicants. They’ll take care of tenant screening on your behalf. They’ll collect rent and deal with maintenance and repair requests. They’ll even deal with evictions if you’re ever in the unfortunate situation of needing to file one. In exchange, you’ll have to pay a small percentage of your gross rent, but since that means the property will become practically hands-off, it will likely be worth the cost.
2. Screen your tenants carefully
Next, if you’re not working with a property management company, work to screen your tenants carefully. It’s tempting to find a tenant as soon as possible so you can start collecting rental income. But it’s much better to be choosy. Screening your tenants will make sure you find someone who can afford your rent consistently and continue occupying your property indefinitely. The extra time here can save you a lot of stress and difficulty.
3. Be patient and choosy with properties
As a property investor, you know that the right property can make a huge difference in your strategy. The right place in the right area can help you attract better tenants, charge more rent, and benefit more from property appreciation over time. Be patient and choosy when selecting properties to add to your portfolio; if you jump the gun and buy too soon, you may end up regretting it.
4. Use the right software
If you’re not working with a property management company, you’ll need the help of property management software to make your life easier. Software can make it easy to collect rent from your tenants, keep records in order, gather repair requests, and even talk to your tenants directly. It will save you time and help you work consistently, no matter how few or how many tenants you have.
5. Keep your tenants happy
A landlord’s life gets much easier when you have happy tenants in place. And it doesn’t take much to keep your tenants happy. Keep your rent increases to a minimum, take care of repair requests as soon as possible, remain transparent, and communicate actively. You can also ask your tenants for feedback to learn about other improvements you can make to your management strategy.
6. Build a trusted network
One of the most stressful parts of being a landlord is dealing with major repairs. But this gets much easier to manage if you build a trusted network of contractors. Network to meet new people and make new connections, and assemble a rolodex of contacts who can help you with practically any situation.
7. Be prepared for a vacancy
Vacancies are tough because you’ll be stuck with an empty property and no income. But be prepared to make the most of them by inspecting, upgrading, and remodeling the property – and then getting ready to market it.
8. Practice stress management
No matter what, you’re going to experience stress as a landlord – even if you have a property management company working for you. It’s important to practice stress management to keep it under control. Physical exercise, meditation, and regular vacations can all help significantly.
Is it worth it?
There are instances in property management that can make you pull your hair out in frustration. Managing an eviction is an awful process, and there’s a chance you’ll get a tenant who practically destroys your property. But these destructive and agonizing events are few and far between; if you work proactively, screen your tenants, and do what you can to make property management flow smoothly, most of your experience will be calmly and peacefully collecting passive income. In other words, if you put in the work, becoming a property investor is almost always worth it.