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Documenting the Journey, the good, bad and ugly

August 3rd, 2014 at 05:16 pm

Hi all,


I ,in general, (although trying very hard) have been doing very bad, crying, hard to sleep, ANGRY, just bad... out of control.

Updates... just the facts..

1. Main house refinance.. no real news... several more back and forth faxing documents episodes.. board did approve the loan and we are waiting for the appraisal to be ordered.. nailbiting times waiting for it.. broker says he has 2 more possibles if this one falls through but both higher rate and higher fees. Until the appraisal comes through I will not know for sure IF they can do the loan and how much my fees/contribution is. Hard to wait. Should hear from the appraiser this week.
2. Job.. Nightmare. New policy. NO WORK AT HOME for 3 months! I cried in the car after that conversation. Job is not hard. In fact I have little to do. How do I find these jobs where I have nothing to do? Days drag. I will ask for more work next week. Speech has taken a MAJOR HIt w the stress I am under. Drive continues to be an hour and half stop and go each way. With my deductions changed and no 401k I am bringing home almost the same making $65/hr as making $55/hr (last job). Thsi is with putting $1100 a month in savings. the amount I was putting w the 401k. Accountant will check deductions this week. Gas costs are SUPER INCREASED. I am actively searching for jobs but none yet locally.. LOTS downtown and out where my current job is.
3. 6 homes/house I am turning over--.. the house I was so excited to see last week? I got there and it felt like nothing was done. I was so upset, stressed and disappointed. and UPSET. Current update. House is commplete (except for fridge, washer/dryer. I will buy if I have to but renter may have his/her own). House for rent at $1250 (old rent under s8 was $925). It just went up YESTERDAY!!!!!!! a month to get it fixed up and on the market. INSANE! Anyway.. 6 calls the first day and showings today. Neighbor next door has a nephew she wants to recommend. This is the 3 bedroom w the MASSIVE garage (3 car w office/workshop). A section 8 person called w a voucher for $1300 who wants to see it. I want it filled iwht someone LONG TERM who is going to treat this and maintain it like their home. I am proud of how it turned out and the response (from neighbors even!)
4. 6 homes/house not paying rent--I am still very frustrated w this and how the new PM is handling this. We had a very clear conversation last week that I do not feel she is handling it and I need to have her get a handle on things. I said I feel I am running things and I do not havve the time to do so. She said she is used to being in control and I need to step OUT. I said I would not feel the need to step IN if there was not such a void of leaving voice mail messages and never actually getting in touch w the tenant. Either she can pay or not.. not 'well I left voice mails'. ANyway...$$ summary .. with this month.. she owes over $2000. I gave new PM until Wednesday and then will either handle it myself or turn this house over to someone else. We got $520 last week and she said she applied for help and is trying to make up the rent (she said that to ME. when I stopped by ) but the new PM has no new updates. I do not want her sitting there while she is trying to find a place not paying rent. Renter seems sincere when I talked to her but I have no money in hand... so words do not really matter. I reclaimed her security deposit already to help w cash flow and can pay it back if she pays. This house (based on the reaction next door) looks like we could fix it up and get rent increase too. currently charging $1000.
5. Other section 8 house. havving s8 adminstrative issues.. new PM says she will straighten out but another thing hanging over me and may make the tenant lose her section8. I can not afford another turn over right now.
6. 3 units continue to flow easily along. nothing to report. These are the ones the new PM has run for years.
7. new Property Manager. Mixed feelings. Higher priced help but things are getting fixed right. But realistically if I was more involved w the homes w the old PM (and I see the need to be upfront to learn the homes etc) wouldn't that be happening anyway? VERY VERY UPSET w lack of urgency, slow turnover of homes, and this passive 'I called, left voice mails' stance and NOT stopping by the house and lack of progress on the s8 issue above and the house not paying rent. Whatever deficiencies the old PM had.. I sincerely doubt I would have this situation going on. New PM is a 'by the book' manager and her solution to the renter not paying is to 'send her a letter, serve her now w a 30 day notice and then wait for court'... NEVER actually speaking to her face to face or dropping by to ' work something out' or get the scoop. I can not do that.

So in general.. very rough and I am stressed. I am coping by doing my treadmill before and after work and trying to tire myself out so I do not think about this stuff (or throw stuff at the wall). I am trying to be clear w new PM and set timelimits, boundaries and investigate other options before moving on. I am trying to give her a fair chance and be reasonable. I need someone though who can go out to the homes as needed and help me w contractors etc and can deal w non paying tenants in creative ways.

For now I am hanging in there money wise but have used up $15k of my rental emergency fund (have $1300 of that $15k left) and that is WITHOUT paying the 6 homes principal payment last month. I need to come up w $3900 to be on track w the loan. Seller is ok if I come up w that in payments next year. I want to come up w it THIS month so I am on track so take full deeded ownership of hte house I fixed up next month.

I need this lack of rent situation resolved, this house filled and this s8 issue figured out ASAP.

I know she does a great job w the 3 units. but those are simpler, smaller etc.. She says she came into alot of issues which is true but this wanting to handle it all via phone just does not work and lack of urgency does not work.

Gave her til Wednesday to update me on the 'lack of rent lady'

Side effect of all this treadmill walking and getting my anger out is I am toning up nicely. This week I am cooking all my food for the week today so I can eat well. I thankfully lose weight easily so if I keep this up I can lose some quick weight and fit into my size 8 clothes easily. They are tight now and I got some new slacks in size 10 at Goodwill so I do not have that added stress (of tight pants) but it would be nice to lose 5-10 lbs and have them fit again. 10 are loose but more comfortable than tight size 8's.. so right between.

About it for now. I need to check in more often.. it helps me to vent too.

So for this month. I am NOT adding to savings. I am instead trying to pay taht $3900 payment from last month to the 6 homes seller (provided I feel secure Wednesday that the s8 issue and the non paying tenants are under control)

Coincidentally the house w the s8 tenant (admin issue) has very low rent too (but has not been updated) do not want to turn it over now.

THANKS to all here on this board who suggested I increase my rental emergency fund and encourage me. I would NOT be surviving without your suggestions and support.


Continuing to believe in these homes and just focusing on 'SURVIVING' right now.. even if it means holding off on savings in the short term. They are small, incredibly easy to rent, solid, and should be good long term and allow me lots of options once paid off (3 years 8 months) to keep/save/invest the cash flow.. or swap the homes out for other/differnt/better ones. I would not be stressed at all. if the non paying renter was 'stabilized or w a plan, move out or pay" and I did not have this vague s8 issue AND I did n ot have this main home refinance where I do not know how much money I need to come up with hanging over me

Thanks for reading

updates, 6 homes, job, main house refinance

July 9th, 2014 at 12:37 am


Tired today. BUSY day

1. boss can not match salary or extend me. last day Friday. I got calls though from another work at home job ..100% work at home... supposedly paying $65+.. crazy!! this datacenter project management is all the rage now.. makes me think that joining this job I accepted. 45 minutes drive.. may put me at a disadvantage for later as the job is just 'regular project management, applications, infrastructure' but not dataqcenter migrations per se ...putting in for the $65 hour work at home job just in case..And I have the phone screen for the $60 work at home job Thursday. (jobs are at competing companies.. interesting.)
2. bank called broker again... now no news til Thursday. bank did not havve all forms. we resent ... prayers
3. 6 homes.. woke up at 5 and went out to that house (that was vacated) to look at it myself. i want to be more involved as we turn these over.. do it right. lower cost. I was IMPRESSED and felt renewed in my confidence that this deal (6 homes deal) was a good one. house did need fix up but will look really nice when done.. nice neighborhood.. just felt good. and money spent now will go towards improvements or long term fixes.. STILL afraid new project manager will be slow to rent this out/clean it up. I am communicating more and will get some quotes myself. Talked to my accountant. he suggestd an idea I thought of last week. that I find some contractors for common things (either hers .. after interviewed or mine) and just use them so I have folks *I* can communicate with and trust and know their rates . VERY good idea and will do. I told her I want it fixed up by the 15th and we start to market for a hopeful move in day of the 1st.

All rents in except that one house .. owes 50% due from last month and this month. Pm going over there tomorrow. upsetting. We will take aggressive action if not out or paid soon. Lots of costs w the transition but all good .. getting things fixed.. taken care of.. just stressful

3 years 9 months left to pay this 6 homes deal off
2 months to my first fully paid off house deed

6 homes update, job, loan (some good news)

July 2nd, 2014 at 08:43 pm

Hi all,

Documenting the journey


1. accepted the $65 hour job.. NO 401k for first year confirmed. I mapped out what I should be getting and should be able to save $3k a month.. already funded Roth so that will be all taxable accounts
2. Naperville job did NOt turn out. not enough E commerce experience.. oh well. this however helps me see that when I stop chasing money so hard I can get a good paying job near home without too much of an issue at $100-110k
2. still in for 100% remote job but wondering if I want it. I want to be out and social. the job (I accepted) has flex time and one day a week at home and 4 days at the office (social) so best of both worlds?

1. no news this week. now I should news mid next week. PRAYERS!! this is for the main house refinance. if this job, the lloan and the 6 homes smooth out ... WOW!!

6 homes

1. s8 lady is moving TOMORROW.. Property manager is going over there tomorrow to do a walk through and see what we need to do.. will let me know after.. plan is to fix it up asap and rerent it for $2-300 more a month.
2. roof on one of the homes goes in this weekend... also did 2 sump pumps and water heater (replacements).. going to do a french drain and one more roof likely this year.. comprising hopefully MOST or all of the larger fix up areas w the rest of work being minor repairs etc..or small improvements tothe hoomes .. particularly the ones we are turning over..also will look at tree trimming etc away from the roof.. I can hold off on the 2nd roof if I want too..
3. most important thing is to get these new renters in and stabilize..I have 1.5 months of vacancy built into my budget #s
4. hoping new PM is aggressive and good with rerenting and turning things over fast..

s8 must not have known about the move out ... they paid for the whole month. after we have confirmed move out I will see if they want me to refund that or take it out of my next check

About it..hopefully good updates to follow. I wish I did not have so much up in the air.. loan and turning over this house.


Mixed news, jobs, main home refinance, 6 homes

June 24th, 2014 at 07:55 pm

Hi all,

Interview went very well but I was not hired 'on the spot' and I am apparently now going to hear Thursday (vs today) which makes me nervous and a little disappointed (i was SO PSYCHED to hear today. .. but liked the job.. not a bad drive at all. flex time (start early leave early if I want) work at home day a week and FRIENDS and social contact at the office.. right now I have none.

6 homes.. good management but struggling w all this 'deferred maintenance' and fixing things not fixed right. upsetting.. ..but getting it done.. I will be happy once this is over and we have filld the home the s8 lady is moving out off.. LOTS to do.. but good properties long term.. just short term stressful

LOAN GUY CALLED. (did not talk to him. he left voice mail) that it looks like a GO.. and that he met w the bank president or senior guy.. showed him my file, my letter, my info and looks good. he is going through underwritign pre approval now to get a letter w specific things I need to produce..

Rate (and afraid to say this out loud it is so good) would be 2 points, 30 year am, 5 year term and 6.25!!

Praying right now (before my nextg work call) for this job.. $65/hr. .I REALLY WANT and need the money to reach my goals and settle down a bit and for this LOAN!!

It will be a BIG BOOST if I get the $65 job AND the loan.. wow and then fill that house and smooth things out.

Just hanging in there for now.. Thanks for the support.

updates, 6 homes, job offers this week, main home refinance

June 24th, 2014 at 12:48 am

Hi all,


I am on final interviews w 2 jobs.. all that I am waiting is for the job offer. to come this week (if it comes..).. I should hear on the full time job, the $60 job and the $65 job.

Main home refinance.. trying for a 6.25, 2 points, 30 year amortization, 5 year term loan.. NEWS TOMORROW.. (tentative approval, not firm)

6 homes.. lady on S8 we are trying to get rid of in order to raise the rent is CONFIRMED moving out 6/30.. we will look to rent it asap after.. may take a short while to clean it up. not sure.. current property manager out of town but left someone good in charge.. STIll happy I switched

Doing 2 roofs this month (next week).. LOTS of $ out the door but can not wait.. w the rain here (cloud bursts like everyday) need to get them done.. expecting to drop my account by $10k or more in the next few weeks..

CARS. I have 2 cars.. 2011 Hyundai genesis (owe $18k) and 2008 Tahoe. worth probably $22k still. paid off. I was seriously looking into selling the Genesis (should get $23kish) and keeping the Tahoe or selling BOTH and getting just a 'reasonable' car (camry or some lesser Hyundai) that will last these next 5 years and pocket (and invest) the difference.

Final interview tomorrow am at the Z$65/hr job... wish me well!!

6 homes transition update and main home refi updates (good news)

June 17th, 2014 at 07:39 pm

Hi all,


Breathing a semi sigh of relief.. that renter called and is planning to drop off rent to new property manager Friday. that will complete the rent for the month and I feel things will run smooth after that... course we are still fixing issues etc.. but smoothing out over time. she is also meeting w the old property manager at 5 to do knowledge transfer.. get keys etc. We still have the outstanding issue of the tenant we want out and that is in the works (getting her out). S8 is thinking of 'violating' her and threatening to take away s8 ifd she is not out by month end..

Praying the PM transition goes well and was the right decision. 6 homes are a major retirement component


Current best offer is 3 pts, 8.99 3 years ..starting Aug/Sept. I verified I have the credit for it. Total savings over 3 years $18000 INCLUDING the offset for the points.

I have called my current lender and am trying to get them to lower the rate and extend the loan (likely less points/fees). I talked to them today and will hear tommorrrow (her time estimate)


Maybe they can do it for just costs.. or 1 point or even 2.. every point is $3k

I know some of you think I am crazy out there for this refinance loan but I do not think hard money loans are coming down.. I think they will be going up (certainly not less than 8.9) and this is an opportunity I need to grab. I need to exit my current loan in a year anyway..Escrowing taxes w the current loan payment will be super hard. I will find it very hard to get a longer loan and why would I want it at hard money rates..

No job yet but 2 interviews this week. I am thinking of taking FULL TIME vs contract (stability, vacation and I think I can get $125k).. I only make $55/hr now so $125k is a big increase.. also I need and WANT stability for these last few years. less stress!!

Thanks for the support. Smile

RENTAL EMERG FUND COMPLETE! and 6 homes transition update

June 17th, 2014 at 12:08 am

HI all,

3 goals reached

1. Saved $1200 to keep in my bank account at all times for emergencies. Contingency money
2. Finished the ROTH for this year.. added $2000 for a total of $5500

That motorcycle guy still owes me $6000.. hoping to see it this month... that will go towards the rental emergency fund so when I pay for the roofs it gets built back up.

Still struggling to settle up and get back on my feet.. settling up w 2 flat tenants this week and then have to settle up utilities for that then all costs go9ne (and income). BIG income hit these last few months. I shoudl be settled by mid next month and can start a routine again.

6 homes transition. still rocky.. biggest concern is the one lady who had rent last week and called old property manager with it.. he told her to hold it and NOT pay him.. now new property manager is calling and she is not returning calls. She is the one who just signed up for new garbage though.. so hoping that works out. new property manager is going over there shortly too. If you recall new property manager is going out of town this next week (Alaska) and is swamped and a little frazzled. I am hoping I made the right decisoin to switch. would feel much better if rent was in. not sure if she is being aggressive enough.. upsetting...She has said it would have been easier some other month to start .. I am wondering if she is doing all she can.. impressed on one hand but nervous w this rent situation. Hope to have news tomorrow.. I do not want to have a non paying tenant but this tenant has been paying ever since she omoved in.. crazy! If no progress tomorrow we will give a 5 day notice .

I will be doing two roofs next month (across the 6 homes).

Property Manager transition update #3`

June 10th, 2014 at 08:09 pm


Update. not super awesome. Rough transition but expectedd. (this is on the 6 homes. 3 units are fine)

1. rents-approx 50% in (note I have 70% of the TOTAL rents but 50% of the tenant portion is not in). I was at first told they were all in by the old property manager-PM. Confusion about who is collecting. 2 tenants called and were told to send it to the other person and never sent it. New PM is collecting from 2 homes today. These people did call old PM and attempted to pay last week (so should have money) but were told to wait for new PM contact
2. finding some delayed maintenance items (leaks not fixed etc)..$$ but at least fixing right
3. tenant in that one house not out yet. expecting word from S8 this week on what they are doing.. I will feel SO MUCH more at ease once that is turned over.

Just hanging in there and making my payments.

Section 8 inspection on one home next week. (another test for new PM)

HOPING this turns out well in general.

I do feel we will get someone good in tehre once we move this lady out just upsetting... but no rent loss so far. I am concerned about cost to prepare house for new tenant but new PM is going over there next week to check things out and I feel I can trust her to get things done right for a fair price and to make sure tenant is aware of hte costs to her if she leaves the house in disarray. I did NOT have confidence in old PM w that.

Once tenant situation (move out) clarifies itself I will schedule the 2 roofs (I have money)

Hoping in the long term that things smooth out and costs are less and homes better run/maintained with none of these insane costly situations popping up.

Property Manager transition update #2

June 5th, 2014 at 09:55 pm

Property manager transition update #2.

WOw.. So glad I switched. already feeling better and more powerful and tenants are listening. including the tenant we are getting rid of. I can feel my life smoothing out as we speak (stil got some work to do but feels I am going in the right direction)

Tenant 1 already switched over her garabge. Tenant 2 (who we are getting rid of) was told we are charging her for xtra costs for garbage (due to her extra people in the unit) and if County comes by next week and issues a complaint or fine we will charge her for it. Also told her Section 8 was being notified of extra people in unit and we expect her out by month end.

We will see how it goes but I LIKE the stronger stance and no nonsense attitude. Some tenant (another house) called the new pm today and already said she likes the new property manager vs the new one.

A letter goes out today to the offending tenant (we are getting rid of) and Section 8.

And all rents appear to be in!!

I feel excited for the future. thsi was such a weight on me.

Property Manager transition update

June 4th, 2014 at 11:41 pm

HI all,

Property manager transition update ...Old PM JUST sent info to new property manager today at 4pm. He sent phone numbers etc.. still need maintenance records, leases, keys. I am reconstructing my files (PC crashed) so do not have that handy until files rebuild. (I have a violation notice from the county I need to rectify by Friday. regarding having separate garbage., they currently share a dumpster which I pay for and they reimburse, dumpster was fine until one house moved in all sorts of folks, now garbage is spiling out etc, and caused a complaint). ANYWAY. old property manager knew this for weeks and told me one house was getting their own garbage and it was being fixed and there was no issue there... turns out nothing was done. Old PM also sent out an incorrect transition letter (wrong info, confusing) without checking w me first and is not returning my calls. I can not afford missed rent so hoping it does not impact that.

VERY upsetting but supporting my decision to leave. New property manager was pretty shocked too.

I will call old PM tomorrow about the transition and rents etc

Looking forward to a smoother '6 homes' future!

I mentioned before I stutter. with all this stress hanging over me these last few weeks my speech 'crashed'.. feels bad to be having a hard time again. normally the 'fix' is to take some time and relax and have fun again. regain my bounce.

If you have been reading my posts you have seen me sortof slowly descend moodwise.... got to get back up and happy again.

No word on new job applications yet.

Onward. Smile