sweet844 : Hi there…current landlord here in Massachusetts. I own a two family. The thing is, when you have tenants, there is no butts. You have to fix it. If the toilet upstairs on the second floor leaks into the first floor because the second floor tenant ‘didnt know’ it was leaking and you have to pay $900 to have a new toilet put in, and $1400 for wall damage, guess who pays for it, right then? You do.
If the fence falls down after a hard winter. Guess who has to pay for it? You do.
If the washer pipe falls out of the sewer pipe in the basement and you can’t get there and have to pay a plumber 3.5 HRS labor to find the problem, guess who pays for it? That’s right again. You do.
Your “take home” isn’t legit. At the end of the year, you can take all of the above mentioned expenses out. And you have to keep track of everything or you get screwed on taxes.
You are responsbile for snow removal in most cases and the upkeep of the yard.
You are responsible for still paying your mortgage on time if your tenant pays a couple days late.
You are responsible for following all the laws in your state that apply to being a landlord. Which means if you have a sh*tty tenant, you can’t just kick them out. For example, in Massachusetts, you have to evict a tenant before the first of the month and they have 30 days to vacate. And then if they don’t leave, you have to go to court and get a court order to have them removed. Which. Gets. Dragged. Through the Courts. Talk about Legal Fees $$.
There is a lot more to being a landlord (a good landlord) then just finding a tenant and collecting a check.
There are also a lot of laws that protect tenants and you really should at the very least be aware of them.
I’m not trying to scare you, just give you the reality that being a landlord is not a cake walk. It can be great if you are a good people person and can detect good or bad tenants and if you are blessed with good tenants.
You have to pay the water bill, that’s another bill. So if you have someone who wants to have them, their husband, two adult children, and 3 pets in the house- you still legally have to accetpt an application from them or you could be sued for discrimination.
You have to have a solid lease.
It’s doable. I do it. But it’s not without headaches (see toilet leaking example at top).
If it were me, I would sell, wipe my hands of it and move on. UNLESS you are going to rent to friends or friends of a friend. They will be less likely to screw you but that would be to keep the house and the lights on, not to make a real profit.
Just my two cents- good luck to you in your decision making!