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2 flat and rental updates

April 27th, 2016 at 04:10 pm

Hi guys

2 flat closes Friday. 14% cap rate..

Got 2 renewals at the 3 units and 2 people moving 5/31

Got 1 sudden move May 1 (or this weekend) at a house . I will look to turn that around asap. We get keys this weekend

My goal was to raise rents (across all units ) by $600 this year. So far we are at $60 and got room to raise for the NEW tenants at the 3 units (start them at $50 more hopefully) and then at the house that is vacating ...hoping to start people at $100 more if I got section 8 or maybe $50 more if I do not. and still waiting to see if I get a rent raised on that Section 8 house I decided to keep. Hoping a lot more people STAY this year so we are using our judgement when we raised rents on existing tenants (we had alot of turnover in homes last year)

Still on track with all the fix up work Should have that paid off by June 15 and back to $15k emergency fund. Hoomes with new siding and roof and landscaping and driveways look great. Doing the fix up work took a dent out of my monthly savings for April and will impact May as well.

Those fix up items were my last big items this year.. now costs will be limited to general maintenance and rental turnovers

Exciting to see how I turn out this year with my total nets..

Updates , new 2 flat, taxes, rentals

April 17th, 2016 at 09:13 pm

HI all

looks like I will close on that 2 flat at the end of this week (hoping so). had to get a new attorney (seller side) the attorney got sick and file was dropped.. we just ordered title Friday.. anyway hoping

The work on the homes looks great.. 3 driveways (where there were none), roof and siding and major seeding where yard got ripped up due to prior foundation work

I have money or credit for all of it

tax refund came in at $9200 and I am setting up with an attorney next week to figure out ways to save on taxes next year

I owe my rental emergency fund $13990. Entire $9200 will go towards that and then I have approx $4500 in repairs on a card that need to be paid off (linked to the large repairs). I will pay that off next month which leaves me with about $5k left to replenish the emergency fund with. That should take one more month

The only other large items I want for the homes are siding the 3 units (not a need and not scheduled but they have really old siding). Quote is approx $13k

One of my tenant suddenly got custody of their kids (the dad) ex wife ill or something so he is moving out immediately to a large home. the property manager is taking his security and letting him know he is on the hook for rent until we find someone else. Hopefully that will be soon. I predict carpet clean, paint and clean with not a lot of fix up. Manager thinks he can get $65/month higher rent. the guy is predicting he will be out next week or mid the week after. We will see. Home will be advertised as soon as this guy gives formal notice (expected Monday). and I have already notifed my 'crew' of paint/fix up guys

Got 2 move outs end of May (at the 3 units)

I am really keeping track of vacancy and 'time to fill' and 'cost to fill' this year as I near the time when these homes will be paid off

I paid $985 to an attorney to do a wage garnishment suit against that one tenant from last year. he works for the gas company (so good candidate for this) and I am trying it out. I have never pursued wage garnishment, bank levy before. $985 is my total cost and they add that and more on to the tenant balance. It would be great if that worked out and was a viable option for me. If it does not I have learned a valuable lesson.

So far NETS from homes have been the following (net of everything-EXCEPT the large $22k repairs which are funded from a different fund). I think I will expand my repair fund to $20k and keep it at that. Another goal for this year. I get section 8 on the first and the rest averages around the 18th

FIguring out vacancy and time to fill and time to fix up will be key to be determining or feeling good that this imcome (or whatever lower amount of this I decide) can be counted on monthly. I allocate $15,200 in the rentals yearly budget for repairs AND vacancy (vacancy covers the costs associated with lack of rent, fix up to turn a unit over, and property manager extra fee to fill). I will see how that figure lines up with actuals this year

Approx monthly nets so far this year (IF homes were paid off.. which will happen 6/2018.. currently all overage goes towards paying the homes off)..

Jan- 5750
Feb- 5300
March- 6725
April- 7300

My budget calls for an average of $6500 a month.

Dad's finances- just asking for thoughts .. things I have missed

April 12th, 2016 at 01:50 pm

HI all]

Just some questions here and throwing them to the group

Dad has approximately $632k
He is 76 and in a Memory Care center
Costs average $7100-$7200 a month. They increase every year (have not seen the first year increase)
He has no other real costs (misc here and there)
Netting his ss, medicare and this facility cost he has a negative cash flow of $6300 a month

I am the power of attorney for finances and medical

His funds are making less than 1% right now and I made the decision not to invest them at all so they just sit. I did this because I am not sure Dad has alot of time left (alzheimers) though he might.. unclear. Average stay where he is at is 2 years and the facility felt that was a good estimate. unclear.. he was declining steadily. recently seems plateaued?

All funds are in trust (3 kids as beneficiiary)
IRA has 3 kids as beneficiary

I take the RMD each year and then every so often replenish his normal checking account with $30k

Any suggestions for other things I should be doing with the money

Dad does not have long term care insurance

Updates on rentals

April 7th, 2016 at 01:06 pm

Hi all

All rents in. I am SO THRILLED with this new company. They enforce late fees. rents come in sooner. I am hoping for less vacancy and faster filling of units (I will decide if that improved by year end but I think it will)

Tax results today. My accountant says betweeen $5-10k and was going to work on them again.. Appointment is at 10am.. So fingers crossed for the 10k figure. I took out $14k from my $15k emergency fund for rentals to pay for the siding, roofs, driveways, seeding work. Good investment I think. not done yet. the rain/snow has delayed things. That is ok with me as it gives me more time to pay. My tax refund will go towards that and then predicting 2-3 months to rebuild my fund up

Suburban rust fix should be done TODAY. excited to see it. again I was referred to a long time client of my accountant so I am sure it will be done right or fixed if not. no one wants to make their accountant look bad.

I looked at my #s again and not sure what I wrote before but I fixed an error in my spreadsheet and hre is what it is

IF the homes/units were paid off I would have made the following

2014 $20k
2015 $34k

Last year I actually got LESS RENT than 2014 I think due to vacancy poor management . just nightmares. The only reason my net was more was because of less repair costs

2014 was my big fix up-repair-improve year

and this year I am targetting $60k This year before the subtraction of the $22k improvements (which will show this month) I was at $18k net for Jan-Feb-March. this subtraction will take it down to negative and then I have April thru end of year to make that back up and reach $60k. I get rents deposited on the 15th of each month

I really want to get it up to $70-80k a year..

Next year will try for higher.. key factors are vacancy , repairs, time to fill vacant units

Thrilled with new managment company. bringing me to new heights and making me see and think my 5 year goal can be a reality

Literally I am starting to wonder. hey should I do a career change, take some classes.. feels like the world is opening up.. investigating hobbies.. all of that

Hope to hear on that Section 8 rent increase this week or early next. This is on that home I was going to sell then got some advice from here and others and decided just to keep it. it is fixed up, rented, new manager says it will not be hard to rent. so why not keep it.. and if I can get a rent increase of $100 or more with the current tenant .. even better!

I know I am not at June 2018 yet (5 year goal end date) and there are still upcoming challenges but it feels like I am OVER THE HUMP and no longer climbing the mountain but managing my way downward.

the likely SUV outcome

April 2nd, 2016 at 03:52 pm

HI all

I did more research, talked to some folks, went for estimates outside of the town I live in etc.. and got referrals. Looks like the rust is not too gone to fix (at all). So I am likely for $825 going to have the areas repaired by welding in new metal and on one area just grinding down, treat and paint. No one appears to warranty rust but they say the spots are not bad at all and should last a few years... they are also not near wheel wells or ongoing wet areas.. if it reoccurs they will fix for 50% of the cost

So I will drop the car off Sunday and go ffrom there

Still thinking of going down to 1 car at some point

Spoke to my accountant too who mentioned my contract ending in July and the possibility of gas prices going up.. he actually thought I should keep the Genesis as it runs well, very good car and too much is in flux right now so avoid making big decisions

The rust guy fixing this is his 20 year customer and gave me a special price.

Also my refund is WAY down. we are at $5-6k right now.. accountant is working #s seeing what more he can do if anything

I just signed up for all these large repairs/fixes so for the next 3 months likely will just be getting the rental emergency fund up to the normal of $15k

SO happy I got my cash back card limits up.. they are at $9k (still want them higher) but it is enabling me to get some $300 off the work with cash back credit and delay payment until May on some of it to allow me to earn some more money. The rain is delaying some work too so that is good. I get rents on the 15th.

MY FENCE IS UP (love it)

Financial updates, moved Roth to regular savings

March 30th, 2016 at 02:24 pm

Hi all

Today I transferred all my Roth from last year and my contribution so far this year back into taxable investment accounts. The reason I did this was because I exceeded the income requirements.

I am working with my accountant on this years taxes and as income was way up.. all around my refund will be less ... he is working on it now. Whatever the result is this year I will talk to him and another attorney/CPA I know to see if there are ways to limit taxes in the future by various creative or currently unknowns. I expect to be having high income for a few more years nwo and I know there are a ways to use LLC (which I have) and other things to cut down taxes. Makes sense to see if those apply. Driveways, siding and roofing is all in the works. so all large things this year will be done by end of next week . I figure a few months to build back up the emergency fund and then settle in again..

I am completing the fence at my house $800 . last year you recall I did a 6 foot fence but 'cut in' at my neighbors 'outbuilding' (it ws an old stable). I just have really negative feelings about my neighbor.. there dogs are out much less (knock on wood) but I just do not like the people.. I figure with the fence I can enjoy the yard again

I still think of just selling and moving to the real downtown area out here where they have older homes and least the last time I lived there everyone was out and about. friendly. you could walk to downtown all of that..the river walk.. I can probably spend less too.. get a front porch to watch the rain etc..hardwood floors.. little nook and crannies..

Anyway. not moving right now and I have a nice house. I looked at the photos from Patient Saver and loved the look of the cozy, landscape, stone (not just the driveway but near the driveway) feel. I like that type of house...

I can understand Patient Savers ancy-ness. I am doing my own little countdown too and working way too hard and feeling like with this house debt I am not going to be whre i want.

Things change all the time.. so onward and counting the multiple blessings I do have.

Thinking on the SUV.. still looking at options but really my contract does only go until July so might be best to at least wait to do anything until then. but I DO want to downsize to one vehicle.. does not make sense anymore to have two and not worth it to me..

Made a mistake, asking for some quick advice

March 28th, 2016 at 10:45 pm

HI all

You recall I got a 2008 Suburban LTZ a few months ago part for the not for profit, part for me. I paid some of it and pay ongoing costs. I bought this out of state from a reputable dealer.. got a good deal etc etc. Love it. drives great. clean car fax... Anyway I did not ask if it had rust.. probably should have. I did not notice any rust however when it first came in but recently noticed rust. (maybe it just grows that fast.. see below for why I think that) Anyway, I figured I would just 'have it fixed'. Turns out it rusts from the inside out and 3 guys (one a trusted local friend of a friend) say that the it is not worth while to fix rust and some of the areas it is are not readily fixable and they will not guarantee any work and it may last from a month to 2 years. never know.. they say the rust will starting eating holes as soon as NEXT WINTER.. Maybe there WAS no super visible rust when I got it and it grew that fast. Two people suggested I clean it up (looks new except for this rust.. guys were surprised it was a 2008) and sell now vs waiting for the rust to eat all the way through. Thsi assumes I do not want to drive it til it dies (I did but not with rust holes). They also said this this type of car is more prone to rust etc etc but that the design of the panels etc has improved and maybe whoever had it did not wash it after driving thru salt etc. they also said where two rust areas are make them think the bumper was replaced or damaged at one time.. they suggest I buy a newer version OR if I get a 2008 to buy from down South or West.

ANYWAY. this is horrifying shocking news.

I stil have my 2011 Genesis which I love and I have this truck. I DO want a truck. DO I need a car? not sure but I love my car. Looking online it appears the only suburban I can get for the money I have in this current one is a similar one with over 100k miles and simmilar year.. actually all the ones avail seem to be MORE than what I paid .

I am weighing the following
1. buy a newer Suburban 2013-2014 with approx 55-65k miles for approx $30-35k AND SELL THE CAR to help pay for it
2. sell ths suburban and buy a similar one and try to search for one in a 'no salt area.. or downsizing to a tahoe. which is almost the same price

2008 Suburbans are going for approx $20k

I paid for rain guards, mud flaps and weather tech floor mats for the Suburban...and a conversion unit for ONSTAR to BLUETOoTh module that will fit the 2013-2014 suburban but is unclear if it will fit the tahoe. the back mat for sure will not..

I do not drive as much with work and do not anticipate leaving where I work in the near term (I think if my contract ends I can just go full time and in 2-3 years I want to explore other options)

If I only have a car I WILL LIKELY feel I need to get an suv for the not for profit and snow

Thoughts? things I need to think on or do?

My plan is to talk to a one more person on the rust, and research what my car is worth and what the suburban might sell for and figure out exactly how much money was paid for the suburban again

More rental updtes

March 24th, 2016 at 01:44 am

Hi all

Continuing to feel great with my property manager. Already calling and clarifying the 2 people whose leases are up 4/31.. looks good at least 1 will stay (yay fingers crossed). I am really thinking I will have much less turnover this year and lower costs

Visited the homes we are doing the siding, roof, driveways on and met the tenants . very nice people and were excited for the improvements..

Just feeling good

So goal this year is $60k net and then next year will look to improve on whereever I end up

I am having to pay some $20k in improvements (or wanting to) so for me to hit $60k net I have to actually make $80k net. so we shall see. That is an average of $6666 a month NET.. seems a PRETTY AGGRESSIVE GOAL right now but we will see..better to shoot for the stars and hit the moon

Key is keep those repair costs down and units filled

Thrilled with it looking like things are turning around

ALSO now that I control all large repairs and get CALLED on every minor repair over $100.. I have better control and am forming sortof a team of different trades people I trust and have reasonable rates.

Loving it

Got to get this primary house paid down or something by 6/2018

I took in a 15 year loan but that makes the payments high which I will not want if I scale back. My mortgage if I do not pay extra is $2750 a month.

Dad still doing 'well' and seems stabilized. VERY glad I moved him to Silverado..

the 2 flat is a GO!! trying to close end of the month. seller contract.. almost 14.5% cap rate.. my goal will be to pay off by 9/2018

Rental nets from years past-true numbers

March 21st, 2016 at 03:43 pm

HI all

Just reading through my rental net sheets from years past. My goal is to smooth out the homes this year and next and realistically complete any lingering 'large repair/upgrade items' this year and then go to maintenance mode

The homes had a lot deferred maintenance items when they were bought. some large (roofs whatever). I got them at super reduced price but realizing I maybe could have gotten them lower (with wht I know now or have learned) .. maybe not. in either case.. I GOT the homes which is a big step in and of itself

Realize that currently all net goes to the mortgages(I am paying these off on a SUPER accelerated rate). 6 homes already paid off, 3 units will be paid off 3/2018

So, my NET if I did not have a mortgage was

2014- $20945 (w repairs/vacancy charges of $50884)
2015- $34288 (w repair/ vacancy charges of $37674)

I am going to set a goal to hit $60k NET (before mortgage for this year). Looking at spreadsheets my major factors that I can control are VACANCY and REPAIRS. I wil track those closely and can more easily do so with the new manager

I am forecasting approx $20k of large repair costs outside of normal wear and tear. which includes roof, siding, driveways. I am starting that this week. I have no other large repairs forecasted and day to day repairs are runnning WAY LESS than last year. I still want to reduce my large repair costs year to year and am coming to the end of the list. realistially this siding/roof I do not HAVE to do but thimk it makes sense long term

A learning year and probably a wild ride but got to get this smoothed out so I can depend on it more. It has been a wild 2.5 years so far.


Net rents update-highest month so far.

March 17th, 2016 at 02:02 pm

HI all

net rents update

Highest month so far

First 2 months this year (with 2 vacancies) was running at $5100 average (NET) before paying mortgage

This month (all units full) I am at $7387 NEt (before mortgage)

I will continue to track this but hoping for a continued upward trend from last year and with better management I should have it

My management fee is lower w this new company 7% down to 5% of rents and repairs costs are MUCH LOWER (and less frequent) and I have increased collection of rents and late fees .. so so far so good. I am hoping the BIG turn around will be in finding better tenants who stay longer. This management company has placed 3 people so far for me (and all seem good but time will tell). One was a replacement tenant (turning over a unit with 6 days downtime!!) and 2 were just to fill vacancies.. one from an eviction. one with a new property.

Last year I had extreme vacancy and legal costs and lower rents because of it.

23 months to go to pay off these 2 3 units.. so I will use what I have learned and work w this management company to continue this upward trend so reach my goals

I think I will reach my net rents goal but still stuck somewhat with owing this $300k on my primary house I do not like owing that much and am wanting to find ways to get that paid down or owe less. BY 6/2018 at current trend. I will still owe like $260k which will make me feel uneasy to leave my higher dollar job or relax. I want that paid down considering (to less than 100k) and maybe then refinnance to a lower payment?

A lot can happen in 2 years though so onword!

Where do all these net rents go right now? My mortgage payment is $5094 for the 3 units and the rest I either pull out to add to savings or will start using to take care of these large improvements I want to do this year.. so I am not pulling from the homes yet


Rental update, all units filled

March 9th, 2016 at 03:30 pm

Rental update

All units filled (been a long time saying that) but finally there and all rents IN and so much smoothing out. I am tracking net now each month and so exciting to see the changes year to year. Now hopefully things will just smooth out and I will jhave normal renewals and move outs not this drama and having to evict people etc.. and lost rent..hoping this year is my best year ever actually and I think it will be. Section 8 lady moved in yesterday and hoping she stays long (and works out). I will do those driveways and siding likely in April. .. got quotes and contractors lined up

Work is still going well.. my contract is up 7/7/16 but the project is going to way exceed that timeline so unless there are any slip ups I should be renewed

I should get my 3% match to my 401k (from last year) next month.. interested to see what it is

About it. Dad is still doing well in memory care.. cost approx $7150 a month. he is doing well but the decline is quick. he is now hardly able to get up from a chair on his own and talks less and less.. but a VERY good place.. less drama and homey. very nice.

About it for right now

getting warmer which is great

Good news updates, rentals (govt payoff bombshell at least to me)

March 7th, 2016 at 05:07 pm

Hi all

Good news updates. I got the house approved (need to a few minor fixes) from Section 8 but guess what. The inspector called the manager personally on his cell and told him he only let the house back in the program because of HIM and then the manager told me that he regularly hosts a golf outing for section 8, contributes to this guys sister's campaign etc and considers it the cost of doing business.. Wow. did not know that but another reason I am happy I switched to this guy
So lease signing should be this week and them move in this weekend

Rent is going up $20 a month

New manager is also submitting my victorian for a rent increase. lady is on a smaller voucher than the size of the house so rent is real low ($1025)

when I tried for a rent increase myself and through the old manager I was turned down last year. hopefully this will work. if so it will further justify my keeping that house and switching the property manager

Did all my tax stuff and sent to the accountant. Hoping to have a rough estimate of refund this week

He is doing the not for profit and Dad's taxes too this year

My not for profit grossed $76k last year . our largest year yet

Looking at costs from last year and doing taxes really helped me see the difference year to year and easy ways to keep track of things. taxes will be easy next year w this new property managers reports

HOMES really smoothing out and will be a big income source for me

Doing siding of a house and 3 car garage this year along with a roof and 3 new driveways. These items will be my big money spend this year but I think will make the homes look nicer, rent easier and all are long term fixes.

All is good

My plan (5 year plan) is working out!!!


Updates, rental and 401k

February 29th, 2016 at 04:26 pm

HI all

Quick updates

ALMOST done w gathering all info from taxes. Hoping to get LOTs back but not sure this year as I have the '6 homes payoff' and more income and other stuff. Hopefully my accountant can give me a rough idea in a few days

I decided NOT to sell the Victorian house. at least not right now. It is rented, does well and I have done so much large fix up (new roof, soffits, gutters etc) that I do not think it makes sense right now PLUS I found a way to ask Section 8 for a rent increase even with the tenant in there

We have a potential tenant for that one vacant house.. we will hope to firm that up early this week. Fingers crossed that works out. She want to move in right away. 1 lady, 7 year old kid, very good references

My net rents are SUBSTANTIALLY higher w this new management company. hope that continues.. be interesting to compare last year to this year

exactly 2 years left on the 3 units.. payoff 3/2018

My 401k is matched 3% a year but deposited all at once. so interested to see what that deposit is for last year (I carry the expected match to the left). I should have that match in the next 2 weeks



Rental update and general life stuff

February 15th, 2016 at 03:34 pm

Hi all

ALL rents in this month, have an application on that one vacant house (hope it turns out) and lots of showings set up. 2 of the 3 units coming up for renewals in 75 days (the point the system throws alerts) so either will turn them over or renew. I can expect to get $50 more if turned over but as I look at my list of larger things I want to do I want to spend less on general turnover. In either case, my turn over cost are MUCH less than last year.

I feel so much better controlling and reviewing the 'fix up work' between tenants. I get to know the homes more and feel in general less stressed.

I have a list of items I want to do this year (improvement type things) to the homes .. but really all improvements should last a number of years so once I get this final round done should be just repair/cosmetic

I do my big excel sheet today (on the rental costs from last year). it was supposed to be systemized and easy and it will be this year but from last year I have the old property manager who gave me no reports for the past however long and then just one long excel sheet at the end

Anyway. still on target to pay off these 3 units march, 2018. if I buy this 2 flat I will set that up to pay off by then too

Feeling better in general about my health/future ( I got sortof thrown for a loop with Dad getting sick so fast) but looking forward to doing other new things, jobs, volunteering and incorporating that into life now

Still have no concrete plan to get this main house mortgage down. I want it to be under $100k by 6/2018.. that is my only goal with no clear path

I DID hear loan rules changed and may be able to switch to a 15 year if that is the case and keep the same ppayment but just 1/2 the term which wil help quite a bit

We shall see

VERY GLAD I switched property managers. one of my better MORE IMPACTFUL decisions in a long time.

Investments are WAY DOWN but just putting in more each month. and have the 401k at 25% . that is the amount I need to do to get to $18k by July1 (current contract end date). It will be fun to see the big change in investment value when things go the other way but for right now with things going down it is sortof scary.

Got some interest in that house. We have a call today. So will see on that. I will share later.

I Do still want to upgrade neighborhoods but do not want to give the house away either but sometimes it is better to cut your losses.

Update on house for sale and maybe buying a 2 flat

February 9th, 2016 at 03:16 am

HI all

Still trying to make my $8000/month goal

ALL rents in and some with late fees
House we fixed up and are renting looks great.. LOTS of showings... hope it rents soon

House for sale. got 2 serious calls. hoping they turn into something

Looking into buying a 2 flat

B area, good shape, rents easily and fully occuped, rents total $1800, cost $74k. with $30k down and can do a seller financing contract for the rest $44k. NET profit if paid off now would be $900.. Payment at 5% over 4 years is $1013. Seller already agreed to a contract and 5%, inspecting it and getting more details Wednesday. House will pay for ITSELF on a 4 year term.

I am keeping track monthly this year of what my NET profit would be after all expenses and tracking that so I have true #s..

So far this has been the net

I still owe $125k on the 2 3-units which will be paid off 3/2018. NET is the true net (if 3 units paid off at current rents). Laundry $ is extra and is cash. tha t is on top of the NET figure. This reflects since the new company took over. #s are not full occupancy. November was down 2 rents and legal costs.

NET Laundry
NOV $4,603.00
DEC $6,018.00 180
JAN $5,517.00 323

Listing a house on Craigs List

February 4th, 2016 at 06:21 pm

Hi all

Today I am listing that Victorian house on Craigs List. I figured it was worth a whirl. It is a good solid house but not in the best area and is a HUGE victorian which has not been updated in some time.. so possible large costs to rehab it when the long term tenant moves out. She has lived there 13 years.

I will let you all know how it goes. I plan to write the ad to appeal to investors only and sell it for cash.

Other homes are going well. no major issues and working on improvements as I go along.

Work on the house that was just vacated will complete today and apparently we are getting lots of calls already

Still VERY happy I switched property managers.

Having to back out contribution from RothIRA

January 31st, 2016 at 05:37 pm

Hi all

Got my w2s and talked to my accountant and really even if he works his magic it will be hard for me to get my income down to contribute to the ROTH IRA last year and likely this year. I am withdrawing my contribution/backing out my contribution from last yearr as well as the $500 I put in this year f and will put it into my taxable investment accounts

I talked to vanguard and they recommended AGAINST contributing to the regular IRA with after tax dollars as I do not get a deduction and it will be taxed again at withdrawal.

So until my income goes down I am limited to the 401k.. $18k and the HSA account

Homes still going smoother.. the guy who we were evicting moved out a few days ago so folks are busy cleaning up, throwing out, doing some quick minor fixes and getting it ready to rent. I am setting a budget of $1500 and am looking to get it listed by the end of htis upcoming week.

I talked to the neighbors (I own that house too) and they are very happy. no issues.. so felt good to hear that.

Trying to run these homes tighter.

Property manager will tell me his rent estimate tomorrow.

I am also putting together a list of 'larger improvement items'across the homes so I can knock those off as I go along but no pending large repairs needed

Question-can I contribute to a ROTH and normal IRA

January 29th, 2016 at 03:23 pm

Hi there
I am asking my accountant this too but if I can not contribute the max in my ROTH due to income can I put the rest of the yearly limit into a regular IRA

Example If I put only $4500 into a ROTH. Can I then put $1000 in a regular IRA?



rental updates and musing

January 20th, 2016 at 05:01 pm

Hi all

I got renewed but for only 5 months!Crazy. I have a new boss though and they said that is all they thought they could do. I did check and the position is budgetted for the the year. My old boss is trying to get me a 1 year extension which they had told me they would do in the first place. Fingers crossed.

Anyway.. have not done tax info yet but i AM looking at this year NET rental income I get and big change w the new property management company. less costs.. less hassle etc.. and I have one unit not paying (eviction date 2/2 if not out by then). Hoping the upward and stabilizing trend continues

Anyway I am thinking though and the biggest (not worked on yet) barrier to financial freedom for me is my house. I owe $300k . can not get a lower loan (though my rate is ok) but I can not get ANY loan reallly or any good loan for apparently 6 more years (unless rules change which they may) which means if I sell/move I would have to go FHA or something else.

I am NOT thinking of selling but need to get that balance down! I pay $450 over a month but still not really making any huge leaps in paying it down.

House is still nice. still in a good area.. still hoping neighbors move though (on my one side) and I may extend my fence.. I am kicking myself for NOT doing it last year .. instead I used part of their 'rear garage' as wall sortof so I did not have to fence that length..

Stil trying to get to almost $500k savings (only at $200k now) by 6/2018. it will be a stretch unless the market bounces back up and I continue my super high savings rate.

where do you guys suggest I investigage long term care insurance?

Raised my savings goal and other musings

January 5th, 2016 at 04:23 pm

Hi all

Raised my 6/2018 savings goal to $475k from $400k

A lot depends on my job, health, emergencies and really a lot of things.

Funded my HSA for the year today. Trying to fund Roth in next 2 pay checks then rest goes towards investments and other savings. I did raise my 401k to 25% which basically for 7-8 months lowers my income (unless I work more than 90 hours) to the amount I would get if I worked full time at the company I am at. I want to get used to that salary so I can be prepared to go full time if money runs out and they cancel my contract

My contract IS being renewed but no word on how long. Hoping it is 1 year. Do not like constant uncertainty that having 6 months contracts provides


Quick question-HSA accounts

January 4th, 2016 at 04:59 pm

Hi guys

I currently have my HSA with healthsavings.com

they charge $45 a year and .625 basis points per quarter

Does anyone know of a better deal? I hate to pay that high of fees

they also allow investments in Vanguard funds for free which is why I use them.



new 2016 goals

December 30th, 2015 at 04:18 pm

Hi all

New 2016 goals below and on the left. I have NO pending large repairs across the rentals. what a change. the first two years were ongoing repairs and fix ups.. no such pressure now.. of course still maintenance and I do WANT to do some long term things but they are not required..

Still setting personal goals.. looking forward to another busy wild and crazy with ups and downs year.

Need to reduce my stress, the amount of stuff I have going on and do more for ME

GOALS FOR End of Year 2016
1. Maintain emergency funds at correct levels
2. $310k total savings and investments
3. Increase rents across all units by a total of $600 month by year end
5. Fix up/raise rent or sell 411 house
6. Buy 2 more homes
7. Fully fund Roth/HSA accounts
8. Fully fund 401k account

I will try to fund the HSA and Roth by February then all the rest goes towards taxable savings.. I will try some of the methods folks are using on here to track #s etc. I do VERY little tracking of personal. adn want to do more.

If the 3 units were paid off and I was not accelerating payments on them so much (I pay over $5k for the mortgage right now) I am at about $7k net cash flow/month with a 5% vacancy rate and other escrows included (tax, repair, insurance etc).. I am still smoothing things out so NOT at that right now.. but these 2 months w the new property manager have been the best in terms of stress and money in a looonng time.. I will check my vacancy rate these past 2 years .. and then again this year and onward. I have the feeling I will have less vacancy adn faster tenant placement w these guys..

really excited to compare this years #s to last years and have some more baselines. I did have a handy dandy excel sheet for that (which I still do) but lack of management reports and accountings from the old manager for 6 months makes it more challenging..

Year End Wrap Up #s

December 29th, 2015 at 06:36 pm

Hi all

Year End Wrap up #s

LOTS of savings!! the hard work paid off. I saved $53012 OUTSIDE of my 401k. went to taxable investments, ROTH or HSA
Also got $200k from family.. used it to pay off 6 homes and put almost $80k towards investments

GOAL RESULTS and Networth chart attached

I will set 2016 goals tomorrow..and work on rental year end #s

Also want to track my personal costs like others are doing..

RESULTS FOR End of Year 2015
1. $15k rental EF=-DONE
2. $35k increase in savings/investments-DONE
3. 1 Roof for 6 homes-DONE
4. Decrease negative cash flow on rentals by $400/mth-$356 INCREASE
5. Stay within maintenance and vacancy budget for all rentals-OVER BUDGET
6. Make all 6 homes/3 units payments-DONE
7. Fully fund Roth account-DONE

Got 2 default judgements and striving to reach year end savings goals

December 17th, 2015 at 05:23 pm

Hi all

We got default judgments on both tenants. which means we get immediate possession

1. first tenant has already paid over $1300 to get caught up and formed a plan to pay the rest by 1/8. We still retain the right to remove her at any time up until paid in full. Mgmt company is adding legal fees to her bills too. MUCH lower legal fees w this company
2. 2nd tenant says she is moving by the end of the month. We will wait to engage the sheriff until then

struggling to put as much into savings to reach some goals by year end..

Goal (not on left yet)

200k 12/2015
300k by 12/2016
400k 12/2017
475 6/2018

A little thanks to everyone

December 14th, 2015 at 03:19 pm

Just a happy post today

I am reading through posts waiting for a call to start at work and I just wanted to say thanks. It is so nice and motivating and inspirational and educational to read the posts, learn from others and hopefully support each other along our journey. It is particularly nice to 'get to know' folks from their posts. see their ups and downs. look back to earlier years or remember them and see where people are now.

I really value this saving advice forum and am glad the 'team' is back maintaining it and we are going to be around for a long time to come. I can not wait to see what somme of you guys (me too) do towards your goals and it is SO rewarding seeing some of you (already in my short time here) REACH your goals and move on.


planning for next year-401k, roth etc, need thoughts on Bond funds

December 11th, 2015 at 06:00 pm

Hi all

Starting to think on next year. Work gets really SLOOWW after mid next week because we have what we call a 'freeze' when no infrstructure/network changes can go in and since that is sortof what we do work slows down and people leave for vacation.

As a contractor I pay for my own vacation so I typically take off less but have easier days while everyone is gone

Anyway.. I have set my 401k up as 25% of each paycheck.. my first goals will be to fund the Roth and the HSA and then any savings will go toward investments. i am currently investing in the Vanguard Admiral stock index fund.. pretty standard and low cost.I have my 401k and Roth in the same fund too. I did take a position in a health care stock fund (Vanguards too). this year I may put 20% of my portfolio into bonds too or rebalance my portfolio so 20% is in bonds and the rest stocks. I am only 45 so I may have only 10-15% in binds. We will see

Any suggestions for any good bond funds at Vanguard?

Thanks all

Rental updates, feeling like my 2018 goal is in reach

December 8th, 2015 at 03:48 pm

HI all

Been swamped and struggling with what to do with a personal relationship... have not figured it out yet.

Anyway. back to finances

new property manager still going well. some bumps in terms of communication but overall much better. We have a face to face meeting today to check progress after month 1 and I will talk about communication etc expectations. I feel confident we can smooth it out.

Meanwhile they are MUCH tougher with rent and faster to serve 5 day notices and get people on track which I like.

STILL smoothing out which is upsetting but necessary and hopefully this will be the last time.. We are doing 5 day notices on 2 tenants.. both the old property manager put in.. both fairly new. one is that tenant he put in after 4 months of searching or 'not searching'.. whatever. Anyway I feel good these people will put BETTER tenants in faster.. Hopefully that is the case and I really feel it is.. very happy w new 3 unit tenant

The Victorian I was going/am going to sell next year/this year.. I just got a good comparable on it. the house across the street just listed (not sold) for MORE than I was going to list mine at and mine is larger etc.. so hopefully I can get the price I want for mine but really I do not have a lot in the property so just want to move on.

Section 8 inspection over there went well. much smoother.. lower cost.. LOWER stress.. we have another one this month on this other house

We are also going to have to turnover 1 unit in the (2) 3 units. and will look to do so for the $50 upcharge we did last time.

They moved in someone within 3 DAYS (of old tenant move out) to fill that first 3 unit vacancy!!.. so almost no downtime. minimal cost to fix up. just great

Hoping that repeats itself.

I have now determined I can NOT refinance out of this loan for some time (my main house loan). so committed to sticking around at least for a few years.. house is a nice ranch.. large lot. updated.. great area. I have my big fence up so private.. sortof like a 'compound' and house has all I need..

I AM paying $450 more a month on that mortgage.. .. started this month

Goal is to get under $130k by 6/18

I also talked to the 3 unit seller (I have a seller held mortgage) and re amortized the loan to pay it off by March/April 2018. With the payment being due on the 15th and the automated system w the new property manager only sending checks the 14th and 28th. this requires me to keep $4k in the account as overage. I am doing that this month. After that. I should be able to pull cash from the account each month and still save on the side. Overall savings goal is $5800 a month towards my investments funds or to fund ROTH IRA and HSA. I will also contribute to the 401k

I AM getting renewed at work which is HUGE (but paperwork is not in yet so not counting chickens until hatched/signed)

So counting my blessings.. still struggling getting these homes/units under control but feel I am coming out on top and feel good I am with a company (property manager) that is professional, cares about the upkeep, is finding good tenants and cares.. ie wants to do well and HAS SYSTEMS in place to do so.. I can tell tenants already respect them more.

I feel my goal of $8k a month NET passive cash flow is in reach. I am still challenged by the $400k by 6/18 but definately in reach too and still need ideas to get the mortgage (main house) under $130k by 6/18

I feel am going to reach my goals.. maybe I can even go full time sooner. I am liking my job. I work at home. and do well. full time will pay $105-110k and comes w 3-4 weeks vacation. why not? or take something else. I want to travel, do stuff.. live while I am young.

I am excited to do 'year end math' and see how I did in all areas.. I know I was way over with vacancy and repairs for the homes but tracking (and new management and learning) is the first step to improvement. I have approximately $400 to go up in rents still that did not happen this year.. (below market rents not just renewals) so if these people move out and at least 2 of them are next year.. I can raise those. this will also mean rehabbing the last 2 homes (if I do not sell one first) . It feels good to have the homes up to a baseline (the ones I did do) and just in general things more under control. By the way. I am now looking for LONG TERM tenants and to keep good tenants. this year poorly handled turnover, legal costs etc, rehab due to new tnenants was my largest expense! Here is hoping that takes a dramatic turn for next year w the new management.


More property mgr updates and Loan Denial

November 10th, 2015 at 11:34 pm

HI all

More property manager updates.

The unit that lady is vacating at the end of the month. We already have it rented!! for $50 more at a bad time of year which means I can look to get that on the other units too as folks move out (not wishing anyone to move out)

On a another note.. 3 units and 1 house have said they had been trying to call the OLD property manager for months to get things fixed and gave the new manager lists of (mostly small) items in these past few days. I will get an estimate UPFRONT from the new property manager to get these things fixed but I do not understand how that old property manager keeps business. . I estimate around $1000 or less for all these old misc things. What was the old property manager doing for $2500+ a month in repairs?

We will never know

Moving ON!

Payments with the new property manager are fixed (system-sent) on the 14th and 28th but if the 14th comes on a weekend as it does this month, money gets deposited on the next Monday

My 3 unit payment is due the 15th so I may start to have to leave money in the account every month to cover that in case the 14th falls on a weekend.

Still seeing how this new company works but good so far!

Still want to buy 1-2 more properties and maybe adjust my mix of homes next year.. it is really feeling like my 5 year plan may just work out and it will be amazing if it does. I mean maybe in 6/2018 I can have $8k cash flow/month and $500k and then maybe work a lesser job or THIS one but without the stress of 'having' to make money or can go full time and get 3 weeks vacation..maybe I can ask for 4?? I can put all my money from my job towards savings and live a little. trips etc..have fun... volunteer.. exercise. hike.. see all the national parks.. road trips .. just wow.. sortof be a NEW LIFE. Right now though I am still working as hard as I can and my continuing focus is on achieving my 5 year goals on the left... still a tall order

OH. got turned down on the last conventional loan. so getting a refinance right now is OUT. I will pay $400 a month more on this loan and revaluate later. My loan adjusts 12/2019 so I have time and it is tied to the 1 year LIBOR (2.5 points over that) but after 5 years it adjusts every year. My goal is to get this paid off in full by sometime in 2020. Rate right now is 5.375 so actually if rates stay much the same or even go UP my mortgage rate will either stay the same or go DOWN

Question for folks-saving pre tax or after tax

November 9th, 2015 at 02:59 pm

Hi guys

I invest in a ROTH IRA right now (to the max I can) but there is a ROTH 401k option at work (have $ withdrawn AFTER tax). What do you guys think on that

General question is what are everyones thoughts of investing pre vs post tax.. I know it has to do with taxes in retirement . if we expect them to be high or low

If you invest POST tax can you withdraw at any time (like in a ROTH 401k) or still have to wait for the age limits



Thrilled with new property management company

November 6th, 2015 at 08:48 pm

I can not be MORE THRILLED with the new property management company. GREAT COMMMUNICATION.. All rents in (except one which they have already followed up on) and just intelligent plans to rent, great ads, just wonderful

Doing major ad cammpaigns, nice office, met all tenants already except one (sending out new leases next week).. .

I can finally GROW my holdings and have options.. or can just stabilize. Someone is moving from the 3 units Nov 31. they already have it listed and are getting calls.and they think those can support $650/month .. $50 more than what I get now

Hoping for smoother waters and more growth ahead!!!

I mean just maybe my plan is going to work..currently on target to get $6,400 monthly NET cash flow a month startting 6/2018 (assumes I prepay 3 units to pay off then too) and rents will likely go up by then.

I will work on stabilizing repairs costs


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