Turning "Overwhelming" into "Overcoming:" Landlord Tips for Battling Stress
Maybe you never intended to be a landlord. Perhaps you were excited about being a landlord—until you got into the daily grind of your first rental property. Maybe owning rental property was everything you dreamed of, then you acquired a second Novi property, and now it's too much to handle.
We call this "landlord overwhelm," and it's a real thing. The good news is, you're not alone! Every landlord feels overwhelmed from time to time. Take a deep breath, and follow these five tips for stressed landlords.
Can You Relate?
First, let's describe some of the causes of stress for landlords. Feeling overwhelmed comes from the daily pressures, to-dos, and unpleasant tasks that come with what can otherwise be a gratifying job.
What are some of the typical points of internal stress for a landlord? Owning a rental property comes with a reasonable level of concern, even fear.
- Is my property a good rental property?
- Will I make money?
- Am I a good landlord?
- What if my tenants break everything?
- How can I get all the work done?
These thoughts are normal! We'll talk more about how to approach the associated "landlord's anxiety" that comes with the title.
The Daily Tasks
If you already have a job, adding in the expected workload of a landlord is stressful. You might feel overwhelmed, trying to find time to:
- List your property
- Handle maintenance
- Find reliable tenants
- Chase down rent checks
- Handle your bookkeeping
Most landlords have another day job. It's common to feel like you're sinking when faced with working two jobs—especially when one is meant to be passive income!
The Unpleasant Tasks
Nothing ever runs smoothly all the time. As a landlord, you've probably dealt with:
- Bad tenants and evictions
- Middle of the night maintenance calls
- Mountains of paperwork and laws
- Dealing with contractors
- Tenant complaints
Sometimes the negative side of being a landlord in Novi can overshadow the financial benefits you see in your role as one. Some of—or even all—of these issues can make any landlord (whether new or seasoned) feel overwhelmed.
Before you throw in the towel and give up your rental property and income, try our tips to help manage your stress—and your investment!
1. Make a List
A pile of to-dos becomes much less stressful when organized into a list. Sometimes the act of putting things down on paper helps the heap of tasks seem less overwhelming. Organize your lists by:
- Routine Tasks: These are things like collecting the rent, scheduling a quarterly inspection, reviewing lease renewals, etc. Mark these tasks on your calendar for the year, then schedule a reminder before it's time to complete the job.
- High Priority Tasks: You can't always plan for emergencies, but what are the most significant problem areas this week? Do you know of a major repair needed for your rental property? Write it down, then write out the steps to accomplish to get it done.
- New Tenants: You might not have a new tenant coming in soon, but make your list of to-do tasks when it's time for a new tenant. Include things like listing the property, reviewing the rental application, any screening tasks, and the Make-Ready and Move-in inspection.
Identifying smaller steps to complete your landlord tasks can help reduce your stress. It also has the advantage of giving you a working plan of attack with which to proceed.
2. Create a Process
Now that you know what to tackle, establish a process for your routine tasks. With a process, you already know what to do when it's time to do the job.
Automating your processes is a significant way to ease stress. Consider technology as a useful tool to streamline routine tasks, like collecting rent. If you never had to chase down another rent check or manually update payment history, you'd reduce a significant source of stress for most landlords.
3. Don't Delay Repairs
Delaying a repair doesn't make it go away. Most often, not handling a repair sooner rather than later makes the problem worse—and more expensive.
Maintenance or significant repairs are a headache, but you'll save money—and reduce stress—when you fix a problem right away. Additionally, you'll make your tenants happy when they see you're taking a pro-active approach!
4. Screen Your Tenants
Screening tenants might seem like a nerve-wracking and detailed chore. Digging into people's lives without being sure of how you can use background information is intimidating.
However, experienced landlords will tell you that it reduces anxiety when you thoroughly screen applicants. That fear of tenants breaking everything in your Novie investment home goes away when you have confidence in your tenants.
Develop your criteria and learn how to apply the appropriate background checks. You'll find well-screened tenants are better quality renters that pay rent on time and take good care of your property.
5. Hire a Property Manager
The best way to relieve stress as a landlord is to turn that stress over to an expert property manager. They already have processes in place to handle all of your daily landlord tasks. Depending on their level of service, they can also handle seasonal items like inspections.
It's really that simple! Your local, Novi-based property manager handles everything from the routine tasks to the unexpected emergencies. Your stress-free landlord life begins when you select JMZ Property Management as your investment property partner. Get in touch with us today to see how we can enhance your rental home—and your peace of mind!