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Contributor

With a 4 year assignment, we purchased a home in our new location. Then received orders 2 years later that we were to move. With the housing market beginning to have some challenges, we knew we couldn't sell. So we decided to become landlords. With some additonal 2 year assignments in far away states, we decided to hire a property manager. We conducted some interviews and chose one we felt best. It's been 3 years now. We've had 3 different tenents and it's had it's set of challenges and costs, but it is all a tax deduction and it has been worth it to protect our investment.

13 REPLIES

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We just became landlords June of this year and its been a rollercoaster of emotions and stress. The property manager we have has not been the best and we have had to constantly contact them. We have our house up for rent since the end of June and still have no tenants. I am hoping we can reap the benefits soon of being landlords.
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I'm sorry to hear of your experience. We had a tough time with our first property manager so we ended up terminating our contract with them and hiring a new one with the same company. But one thing I did in addition to my property manager's advertising is list it on www.militarybyowner.com with my property manager's info. I could monitor the inquiries and follow-up if I needed to. That is how we received almost all of our tenants. But any expenses and losses can be listed on this year's taxes so even though it doesn't help in the short run, there is light at the end of the tunnel knowing that you will recoup.
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We moved to Las Vegas in 2004 and bought our first house. Now we are over $140,000 upside down. My husband got orders to Florida. We are living separate lives because we can't sell our house. Also, we can't foreclose because then he'll lose his military clearance. So after many sleepless nights, we also decided to become landlords. We both were pretty depressed about it, but we made up our minds that we have to rent and we're trying to stay positive and move foward. We would like to rent to military only but we're not sure if this is being prejudice? Is it worth having a managment company? Has anyone who is a landlord, managed your own property yourself? I hear a lot of horror stories about it being hard to evict tenants etc... This makes me so nervous about rening. If anyone has some positive words on this, I could really use some uplifting stories about now.
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Could someone explain to me how renting costs are a deduction on taxes? We are new at this landlord business and I keep hearing that things are tax deductible. Yet...I don't know what "things" they are talking about, lol. Help!
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bigYou really do need to talk with a professional. Beside trying to get the most out of deductions you need to figure out your long term goals with the property. Are you planning on moving back, do you plan on selling it down the road or are you going to keep it forever and always rent it out. Theses are important question that go along with deductions. Mainly because a rental is an investment and if you deduct expenses and the house itself you can save money. However, when you sell the house the earnings are treated as profits and you may or may not have a big tax bill depending on what deductions you took. 

 

So again before you become a landlord figure out your goals and why you are becoming one. Forced because you could not sell your home, plan on returning or just want to give it a try and see if you can continue making it work. My father-in-law bought a house everywhere he went and now rents them out. Some make and some lost money. He is not rich in cash but on paper he owns every one of these and has some bucks if he liquidates.

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When you use Turbo Tax premium (for landlords) and others the app pkg will walk you through all the tax deductions such as repairs and insurance on your managed home.
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Boy oh boy have you asked all the right questions. However, the only tax advice you get should be from a CPA, not here on a blog. Having said that, I did have a rental. Any costs over your profit is pretty much a deduction on taxes. Mileage to check on the property (or airline tickets) hotels, mileage, interest on your mortgage, lawn service or other maintenance items you pay for will for the most part likely be a deduction to any fees you charge the tenants. Again, check with a tax professional. Having a management company handle your property is a great idea, however, that too will cost you a part of the profits from the rent you charge, but it's nice to have someone available to take care of issues with your home. That too is most likely a cost you can "write off" , or deduct as a loss on your taxes. I never thought we would ever rent a home out again, but we too my be on orders for three years forcing us into landlord status once again. Good luck.
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I see there are many experiences on this discussion. I first want to applaud the strong women who are sticking it through with these issues with these home. In my experience I think its best to have someone to manage your property for you if you are far away. I know its hard to trust someone who you have never seen thats why this should be done before you PCS. It very affordable to have someone to help you. As for the person who bought the home in Las Vegas. Ask your bank to let you do a short sales Also check out the new programs that the government has. Thanks Marquand Price Coldwell Bnker TEC 3201 General Degualle Dr. New Orleans, La 70131 504-307-4844
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We,too, own in Las Vegas and suffer from the bubble, but SURVIVE! How? We hired a local management company that was recommended by our community association staff. Even though there are rough spots, and I have to be firm and diligent with them, I have a paying tenant, whose background was checked, and who pays the rent. My advice: get a property management company and ALWAYS keep in touch with them (even when things seem to be smooth). No one will protect your investment like you will. ALSO, I have a pool company that takes care of the pool (I include it in the rent). They also keep tabs on the tenant for me. Let the management company screen tenants--other people besides military have jobs in Las Vegas and can pay rent. This is the most important thing that company can do for you. They also SHOULD have a legal advisor who works with them on tenant issues. Southwest Management is a good example of the pros out there. Tenants have many rights in NV, so don't do it alone. Also, use AHRN and militarybyowner.com