They say land lording is unlike other investments because it requires a lot more work than just cashing a dividend check. It’s kind of like buying yourself a job. – Greater returns in exchange for a work input. At least, that’s the idea.
So far, with almost three years of land lording under my belt now, I’ve had it pretty good. The only thing I had to do was patch a roof last year after a blustery storm blew off some shingles. It took all of twenty minutes to do once I got there. And it wasn’t an emergency so I was able to get it done a few days after it happened when it was convenient for me.
The mythical 3 am phone call for a clogged toilet has yet to happen to me. And if it did, I wouldn’t pick up the phone. My tenants know that if they can’t reach me in an emergency they can just call a plumber or electrician or handyman and send me the bill. So far that hasn’t happened either.
I did actually have to put some work in last month though. One of my tenants had to end his lease early and move out in a hurry. And he left me with a mess. Not a disaster. But a mess. I ended up spending a good 8 hours at the house earlier last month sweeping, mopping, painting, rehanging a door, maintaining a furnace, and hauling old cheap, irreparable furniture to the dump. No index fund would ask you to do all that.
But it’s really not so bad. I can do the work when it’s convenient for me. I could even hire out some of it if it really annoyed me. And it’s so infrequent that I actually get called to do anything that I really don’t mind it when I do.
I wound up renting the house to a new tenant just a week or so after the old one moved out. Fortunately vacancies aren’t a problem at all. And most of my hands on work, after a property is all rehabbed of course, pretty much involves just depositing checks. So, as far as jobs go, it’s got to be one of the easier ones around.