Let’s be real here. Managing a rental property is a LOT of work. Truly, it takes a special kind of person to take on this role, because it’s literally never-ending (and sometimes super gross…you wouldn’t believe the things I’ve seen that tenants have done to a place). And if you own multiple properties? Well, you’re just plain nuts if you think that managing them is a good idea.
I’m going to give you 3 reasons why you should absolutely NOT be taking on the role of property manager for your rental homes, and I won’t mention time or money. Why? Because you already know that managing rental property(ies) is going to take a ton of time, and likely cost you a lot of unnecessary cash as well. So here are 3 other reasons why taking care of multiple properties is a bad idea:
- You can’t clone yourself. When you manage a rental property, you take on a lot of roles. Rent collector, tenant screener, bookkeeper, marketer, customer service, property inspector, that person that tenants call at 2 a.m. because they’re drunk and they clogged the toilet and can’t figure out how to unclog it. Yes, this actually happens, and yes, it is annoying and exhausting. Unfortunately for you, you can’t clone yourself to divvy up some of the work, either. When you manage your own rental properties, it’s ALL on you to do everything concerning the property – and I mean everything. If you go this route, better keep your plunger handy. 😉
- It’s draining, physically and mentally. I said I wasn’t going to mention the enormous amount of time you’ll spending managing the property, but I didn’t promise not to bring up the toll this will take on you. When you’re giving something everything you’ve got, it will eventually wear on you, both physically and mentally. The problem is, there’s no end in sight when you’re the only one running the show. You don’t get holidays and vacations, unless you’ve made other arrangements for someone else to take on your duties. And even then, it’s pretty tough to step away 100%. If anything goes wrong or the person you’ve left in charge has a question, it’s you they’re going to call. This feeling of being constantly on-call can be extremely taxing, and it will eventually take a toll on your health.
- It’s too hard to be objective. This one’s the kicker for me. When you decide to manage the rental property that you own – and that you’ve poured time and money into – it can be a real challenge to stay objective about the property and the people who live there. And objectivity is important; you have to keep your emotions in check, otherwise you could make some really stupid decisions. You can really run into trouble if you fall in love with a property and wind up basing your decisions on how you feel about the place, rather than what makes the most sense financially. I’ve seen countless investors fail to be objective about their property, and it never ends well.
You need to think long and hard if you are seriously considering managing your own investment property. It’s hard, unending work with little reward. Sure, you’ll save a few bucks because you’re not paying a professional property manager to do it for you, but there will be costs in other areas, without a doubt. Make sure you know what these costs are before you move forward without a property manager.