Rental Property Update

Rental property updateIn late February, I put in an offer on a second rental property here in the valley. My below-asking offer was accepted, and things started moving fast.

We had a super quick close (less than 10 days later) and so I was able to get started on my list right away. Here’s what’s happened since then.

Getting it ready to rent

Although the house was in pretty darn good shape, and the previous owner had done a good job refreshing and improving things, there were still quite a few things to be done before I could offer it for rent. So in short order, here’s what got done:

  • Accepted the regular insurance quote and bought flood insurance
  • Registered the house with the county as a rental property
  • Got the utilities in my name so I could have some work done on the house
  • Had an HVAC person check on the AC and heater (Luckily, while they are both VERY old, for now the heater worked fine and the AC just needed freon. I fully expect them both to need replacement though within the next year or two.)
  • Got an estimate on adding a paved driveway vs. the existing gravel (and passed on doing that)
  • Got multiple estimates on replacing the carport roof, which I decided could be put off a little while longer. (But will do fairly soon.) Luckily the roof on the house itself is in awesome shape.
  • Had an electrician replace an ancient sub panel with a modern one, replace one of the GFI outlets with a normal one (since a refrigerator shouldn’t be plugged into a GFI), install an outlet for a dishwasher and replace the existing disposal wiring with a cord that could be plugged into the new outlet, fix improperly installed wiring in the carport, and install a switch for the carport lighting.)
  • Bought a dishwasher & had it installed (the house had never had one before, but the previous owner had cut out a space for one in the existing cupboards, and my plumber got it hooked up after the electrician had done his work.) The plumber also capped off the leaking sprinkler system, since there was no longer any need for sprinklers.
  • I did a few cosmetic repairs (mostly this consisted of replacing the many burnt-out light bulbs, fixing cupboard doors so they would stay shut on their own, touching up paint, trimming oleanders, replacing some hardware, trying to kill hated remnants of Bermuda grass, etc.)
  • Brought in rock for the bare-dirt front yard
  • Turned an odd little niche in the hallway into a linen closet with cupboard doors on it. (The house lacked a linen closet previously, and I couldn’t see any alternative purpose besides hide-and-seek for a floor-to-ceiling narrow niche in the hallway.)

All set

All told, I’d spent just over $5000 to that point on prepping the house, having repairs and improvements done, insurance premiums, fees, and utilities. (Plus the purchase price of $105,000, of course.)

I also met the neighbors — who all seemed very friendly — and reassured them that I wasn’t going to rent the house to a criminal.

So after all that, I was ready to list the house for rent. I decided to go the section 8 route, which I’ll talk about more in a future post.