When you decorate your home, you use your own special artistic vision to create an environment which will be the backdrop of your families’ lives. This is a living expression of your own soul, which will start as a concept, but will almost immediately begin to grow and evolve around the daily activities of your family members.
This book covers the following topics:
One: Is Owning Rental Property for You? This chapter focuses on the good and bad parts of being a landlord and gets you thinking about why you want to be a landlord, what kind of property, what your profit may be, and what your goals are.
Two: So Happy Together: Landlording With Family or Friends. Should you be a landlord with a friend or family member? This chapter will help you decide, and provide guidance on how to do it.
Three: Preparing and Marketing Your Rental Property. This chapter is an overview on making sure your property is in rentable or better condition and then how you should go about advertising and showing it.
Four: Screening and Choosing Good Tenants. Remember the movie “Pacific Heights” where Michael Keaton terrorized his landlords Melanie Griffith and Matthew Modine? You don’t need a tenant that bad to realize the difference good tenants and bad can have on you being a landlord. This chapter will help you find good ones.
Five: Preparing a Lease and getting the Tenant Moved In. This chapter provides some information on lease and rental agreements but is one of the chapters that refers you elsewhere for assistance in drafting the document you choose. Good chapter for introduction to topic.
Six: Manage Your Rental Income to Maximize Tax Deductions. Because tax laws change so often, I recommend you use this chapter, which has some good advice, as a starting point to know what to talk about with your tax adviser. It is good basic advice, but you should seek professional advice from someone in your state and who keeps on top of all of the changes.
Seven: Keeping Things Shipshape: Repairs and Maintenance. If you own it, you are going to have to deal with fixing it. This chapter provides some good advice on the legalities of your obligations as well as some suggestions on adopting a good maintenance and repair system. For those not into handyman activities, the provide some information on hiring someone else to do the work.
Eight: Landlord Liability for Injuries, Crimes, and More. This chapter provides some basic information regarding liability for tenant injuries, environmental health hazards, crimes and some guidance on insurance. Every landlord need to be aware of these issues and unfortunately may have to seek further information if something bad happens.
Nine: Living in Perfect Harmony? Dealing With Difficult Tenants. You will not always have ideal tenants, and even if you do some problems may arise. This chapter has some good basic information on common problems and some suggestions on methods to resolve disputes. I’m glad they listed mediation, because as a mediator, I feel this is a great way for disputes to be resolved, rather than entering more expensive litigation. I would suggest learning more about the topics in this chapter from other resources since it could be very important during your time as a landlord.
Ten: Don’t Want to Do It Alone? Hiring a Property Manager. This chapter explains what a property manager does, and helps you determine if hiring a property manager is right for you. If it is, this chapter provides some guidance on how to find a good one.
Eleven: Read to Quit? Exiting the Rental Property Business. All good things come to an end, and this final chapter will help you plan your exit strategy. Good things to consider when you are ready to sell.
It may be difficult at first to create an integrated look throughout the house. As they say too many chefs can spoil the pot. However decorating is more of a process than a single event, and you can tinker with color and placement over the course of the year, to try and get the house looking more consistent. As the family grows your house will grow around them, holding them and comforting them in the warmth of their own creation.