Slumlord Update

We’re six weeks into our new lives as slumlords.   Our tenants moved in late in January for a lease that started February first.

Our tenants are paying $1200/month for a two bedroom, 1 bathroom house and 2 of the 3 stalls in the garage.   This is in a first ring suburb.  The house itself is a bit under 2 miles from the border of Minneapolis.

The rent is on the lower end of the curve for the size and location, and my wife has known the tenants for years.

Of the $1200 we get each month, here are our fixed expenses:

  • Water/sewer/garbage:   $170 per quarter
  • Property taxes: $2359 for last year

That’s $253.25 per month we pay for the property.

The tenants pay gas, electric, and cable.

That leaves $946.75 in profit for us each month.  Yay!

But wait.

Two days after moving in, the new boiler went out.  It was a pain in the butt, but the company fixed it for free.  They even loaned our tenants some space heaters, since this happened when it was -20 degrees Fahrenheit.

A couple of days after that, the drain pipes coming from the bathtub gave out.   Eighty-year-old cast-iron pipes do that.   $325 for that fix.

The paint we put in the kitchen is peeling?  $250 and a day of painting.

Part of our project with Sammy has him maintaining the property.   For the winter months, he’s been cleaning out the snow every time it falls.   $425 for February and March.  Welcome to Minnesota.  I’m not sure this is going to be a continuing part of the property service next winter.

Sink clogged further down that we can reach with our pipe snake?  $125.

3 feet of snow melting faster than the ground underneath is thawing, allowing water to seep through the basement walls?  We don’t know, yet.  That fix has to wait until the snow is gone.

Of the $1893.50 “profit” we’ve received so far, we’ve had to pay out $1125.  Of the remaining $768.50, we’re setting aside $500 per month for future repairs, which we expect to keep making for at least a few months.

Hooray for a  -$231.50 profit!  It makes all of the work for the last 10 months worth it.

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    1. Yeah, well, we tried to warn you, but you were blinded by the dollar signs. 🙂

    2. Slumlord is a harsh word! Is the property a slum? If not, you are a landlord. You are on your way to riches!

    3. Once you get all of the repairs out of the way and things in tip top shape hopefully you’ll quit bleeding maintenance expenses 🙂

    4. Don’t worry. It will pay off eventually. But it’s always good to have some money tucked aside for those repairs that always seem to come up, maybe a little too often!

    5. If the paint in the kitchen is peeling, you probably neglected to prime it, and put latex over oil paint or something along those lines. Priming it first would have likely prevented that from happening. Hopefully that gets done as part of your ‘fix’.

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