Earlier this week, my hometown of Meridian, MS got hit pretty hard with winter weather. It snows about 3-4 years in that area, however if 2020 wasn’t enough to put everyone on edge, the winter storm of 2021 sure did.
After checking on my immediate family, I reached out to the Property Manager I have looking after my rental property in the area to check on her and the tenant in my property. I was not surprised to hear something had happened. However, I am pleasantly pleased at how she has handled the situation.
The tenant was not at home at the time and a pipe under the second bathroom burst and she was already on it. She’s already hired someone to fix the issue and turned the water off to prevent a large bill for the tenant. She said, “I only want to involved you when I really need to”. That to me is a sign of a great Property Manager. She knows I don’t live in the state and that I have other things going on and understands the importance of her position to take care of the tenant needs and the property.
In this moment, I couldn’t be more happy that I actually pay someone 10% of the rental income to have someone to take of things like this. I’m also reminded of a book I read named Long-Distance Real Estate Investing By David M Greene that recommended hiring a property manager as well. My advice to anyone especially, if you are a long distance real estate investor is to add a Property Manager to your team. It will be better for you in the long run.
The first question people ask me when I tell them that I invest in Real Estate is “why did you decide to start investing?” Although my purpose has changed since I made the decision. It all started because of my budget. I purchased my current home in 2017 after renting for a while. Then I bought a new car in 2018. Yes, I bought it brand new and after buying the car, I started looking at my monthly budget and noticed that I wasn’t saving as much money as I used to nor that I wanted to.
Of course, me being the over analyzer that I am sometimes, I took a deeper dive into my finances as a whole. I looked at how much I was spending on everything. I created an Excel spreadsheet to look at how much money came in and out of my bank account. Every month after I looked at the money I would have left after I paid all my bills, I took the remainder and either put it aside or I invested it. I did this process for about 8 months and was helpful to know where I can take some risks with investing and saving.
For anyone looking to invest, I highly recommend that you analyze your monthly finances first. I often hear people asking questions such as what should they invest in or how much money do they need to start investing. The answer is simple. What can you afford?
The first question everyone always asks me is why did I decided to get into real estate. The truth is Real Estate kinda found me. After buying a new car in 2018, I realized I wasn’t saving the money I used to and when I took a deeper dive into my life and how I want to live in my elder years; I realized I have to start making different decisions about my finances.
Even though moving can be a pain, I always like shopping for places to stay. I like going into properties and seeing if my furniture is going to fit, if it will be enough space for visitors, etc. Even now, when I’m not actively looking for another property, I still look at properties. Deciding to get into real estate was kind of an easy choice. I did some research and found out there are so many ways real estate can help people reach that next level in their life. I was really only looking to stack more money for my retirement and get some rotating income. However, plans changed after I started seeing how I can I can make a bigger impact on the community I grew up in by providing affordable housing and helping to rebuild the community.
The impact of the hurricanes in 2005 affected so many people, including people in Mississippi. I can remember the days when businesses did well and were open for longer than 2 years, now it seems like every time I visit, another business has closed or is going out of business. It’s been kind of heartbreaking to see, but there is a light at the end of the tunnel and with consistency, I know it will be the city it once was.