Could We Become Landlords?
One of the challenges we face as we work towards our goal of becoming financially independent will be deciding if we need additional income streams. Presently, the only revenue we have coming in is from our full-time jobs. But when I read other PF blogs, I am now wondering if we are doing enough in order to reach our goal of retiring early.
These other PF blogs talk mainly about doing side gigs like driving for Uber or hosting an Airbnb. While these gigs sound interesting enough, I just can’t picture either one of us picking up strangers in our cars or allowing strangers to move in – even temporarily. I admit that I’m a work in progress with my anxiety level, and that my mind runs faster than the Shanghai Maglev, but I keep hearing horror stories that I can’t seem to shake.
Another possible avenue would be to become landlords. This could be a more viable option where we chose to buy a detached condo. The reason why we decided to live in a condo is because we knew our careers would offer little time for maintaining our home. And before we purchased our condo, we did a great deal of research into the HOA, and were well aware of the potential pitfalls.
Thus far, condo life has been exactly what we were looking for. We like having laws and restrictions because it keeps our property value up. The association does a good job of maintaining the property. We’ve only had one assessment for $1800 in the last 14 years, and it paid for a new roof which we thought was more than reasonable. Plus, our condo investment has reduced both our property taxes and homeowners insurance premiums.
In terms of becoming landlords, our property would fit the bill easily enough.
- We wouldn’t have to worry about landscaping or snow removal because our HOA fee takes care of it.
- Our home offers plenty of space where it has four bedrooms and two full baths.
- We have a detached home with lots of land surrounding it which would provide a safe place for children to play.
- We are in a prime location where the nearest interstate highway is less than three minutes away, and we are only minutes from the nearest shopping mall.
- There are only a few condos currently being rented, so turning it into rental should be a fairly simple process.
When we looked briefly into selling our home during the Great Recession, the real estate agent assessed it at top value (for that time), and said that our home was in “immaculate, move-in condition” which could also help us sell it as a rental.
For all of these reasons combined, we believe that becoming a landlord is a possibility in our case. But we are also aware of the fact that being a landlord is not as straightforward as it seems, and that there is a lot to consider. So for the sake of Mr. FE’s sanity and my own, we’ve decided to take our time in weighing out the pros and cons of becoming a landlord over the next couple of posts, and decide whether or not it would fit our desired lifestyle.