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How Landlords Can Cope With Sky High Rents


The Washington DC area has always been famous for its expensive rents and real estate prices, which makes investing in real estate in the Maryland suburbs of D.C. both a challenge and an opportunity for profits.  Of course, in recent months, unaffordable high price tags are popping up everywhere on everything, not only in the D.C. area, and not only for housing.  Even though a lot of workplaces have reopened since the shutdowns at the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, and rental assistance is much harder to find than it was in the days of remote work and remote schooling, tenants across the D.C. suburbs are struggling financially.  There is little that you, as a landlord, can do about the fact that prices are high everywhere, but there are things you can do to lower costs for yourself and your tenants.  This way, they will be able to afford their rent, and you will be able to afford the overhead of your rental business.  To strategize more about keeping your rental business financially solvent in challenging economic circumstances, contact a Washington DC real estate lawyer.

Invest in Energy Efficient Appliances

In most lease agreements in rented apartments and houses, utility bills like electricity, water, and Internet are the tenant’s responsibility, and yet it is the landlord who bought the appliances and had them installed.  Kitchen appliances last for decades, so multiple tenants have likely come and gone since you bought the appliances in your rental properties.  Buying energy efficient appliances not only conserves resources, but it also helps your tenants save money on your utility bills.  Remember that you are only collecting money for rent, not utilities, but tenants consider the affordability of utilities when deciding where to live and whether to renew their lease.  Choose appliances with an Energy Star logo, meaning that they are more efficient than legal standards require, and toilets that only flush a modest amount of water except when prompted to do a big flush.

Housing Is More Affordable With Housemates

The layout of a rental house is as important as its size and location.  A rental house is most affordable if its layout is conducive to a housemate living situation, meaning that there is an equal number of bedrooms and bathrooms, and tenants can get to a bathroom without passing through a common area of the house.  A three-bedroom, two-bathroom house is fine for a family, where two adults are responsible for the housing costs of four or more people, but a three-bedroom, three-bathroom house is ideal for three housemates, who divide the cost of rent three ways instead of two.  It is worth a slightly bigger mortgage to buy the three-bathroom house, since you get a more reliable stream of income with three housemates, especially since, if one housemate moves out, you only have to replace one third of the income from the house, as opposed to if a whole family moves out, leaving you to start from zero finding a new tenant.

Contact Tobin O’Connor Concino P.C. About Your Residential Real Estate Business

A real estate lawyer can help you make wise decisions about buying investment properties.  Contact Tobin O’Connor Concino P.C. for help.



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