Life as a landlord can busy and stressful. As you add more rental units to your portfolio, your profit and your skills as a business person are sure to grow. But, this growth can also mean that you don't have the time you used to have to care for many tasks yourself. Outsourcing many functions of the rental business are one of the best ways to manage your growing empire. So, what can you outsource as a landlord? Here are 5 ideas to start with:
Property Management. Surely the biggest way to let others handle most day-to-day landlord activities is to hire a good property management service. These companies specialize in handling administrative tasks like vetting potential tenants, handling tenant concerns, advertising for new clients, working with vendors, and managing payments. This is the ultimate in hands-off rental ownership and is especially valuable if your rental units are far away.
Online Payments. Collecting one or a few rent checks per month isn't a particularly difficult process, but it becomes onerous to continue receiving checks as you grow your business. The answer to this is to switch to online rent payments through your bank and let the bank's system handle the accounting for you. You'll find this method faster and easier than manual deposits and you have all your information in one place.
Landscaping. Outsourcing the maintenance and care of your units' exteriors is an easy call. Depending on your budget and the needs of each property, you could hire a service only for seasonal work like blowing out sprinklers, trimming trees, or performing spring cleaning. Or you can bring someone in weekly, bi-weekly, or monthly to mow, edge, and prune. Having a landscape service also keeps your yards looking great and avoids problems with lax renters.
Administrative Assistance. If you just need help with the various administrative tasks that need to be done throughout the month, you could consider hiring an in-person or virtual assistant. A property management company may be able to provide this service too. An assistant can perform many jobs that don't require a lot of decision making, freeing you up to focus on the bigger picture. For example, he o she can call on background checks, send payment reminders and confirm deposits, coordinate with outside vendors, meet with HOAs, and keep in contact with current tenants.
Legal Work. Unfortunately, being a landlord means understanding the laws around the landlord/tenant relationship and engaging in some legal actions on occasion. It's important not to try to DIY many of these legal tasks, as many states are increasingly friendlier toward renters than landlords. You can use the process of developing a rental contract and buying land as a method of developing a good working relationship with a lawyer that fits your needs.
By outsourcing these 5 main functions and even finding more ways to do so, you can help ensure a smooth property management business and less stress for you and your tenants.