After I flipped my first house last summer, I needed some time to recuperate. Flipping that house was a daunting, unpleasant experience that we now refer to as “the dark days”. However, I learned a lot and found hope in the fact that I still felt excited to stay in the real estate investing world even when tears of frustration were pouring down my face. After a couple of months of not really thinking about anything related to renovating a house, I jumped back on that horse and bought my first rental property at the end of January!
The Specs: Built in 2004 it has two stories with 3 bedrooms, 2.5 baths and is 1,481 sq. ft.
The Rehab: Replaced wall-to-wall carpeting on the first floor with vinyl sheet. Put a fresh coat of paint on the walls, ceiling and trim using a similar color palette to the one in my first project. Replaced the old carpet on the stairs and second floor with new carpet. The rest of the project included minor repairs from normal wear and tear over the 12 years that it was occupied.
The Management: This time around Rob and I didn’t have to put even a drop of sweat into this project. I knew that if I bought a rental property I would be hiring a property manager to manage it. So before I even had the property, I interviewed 10+ property managers and ended up with a company that I felt very comfortable with, and which had a pricing structure that would work. From day one they have been overseeing everything from the rehab to marketing the property to negotiating a lease with the new tenant. Words cannot express how much I love having a buffer between myself and all of the stress that comes with owning a rental property.
The Lessons (so far): Knock on wood, but there haven’t been any major “learn-from” mistakes yet. My biggest takeaways at this point are that I need to be even more conservative when I am running the numbers on a potential deal and that being somewhere between totally hands on and totally hands off is where I want to be for my next project.
The Next Project: my goal is to have at least two more rental properties in my portfolio before we leave for our year abroad. I have already been looking for the next deal, but first I need to finish the process of refinancing this property so I can use the money to get the next one. The first few months of 2017 have started off smoothly, and I am feeling even more confident that this is the right path for me.
Stay tuned for more updates on how I am building my real estate empire!