Hard to do if you plan on living in the home eventually and also difficult if you live near by, but try to avoid driving past to check on the gardens. It is still a good investment with a messy garden
Don’t make friends with the tenant
It will be much harder to increase the rent, or send an arrears notice if you see them in the shopping centre regularly or meet for coffee.
Don’t neglect the property
If your tenant advises that there are some maintenance issues at the house, attend to them promptly. It is easier to tackle problems one at a time, rather than risk the tenant leaving and having to attend to all of the problems before the house can be re-rented.
Have a depreciation schedule
Have a professional schedule prepared for tax reduction purposes. The fee is tax deductible and it may save you a fortune over the years.
Increase the rent when appropriate
For us, Spring is a good time to increase rent, because if the tenant leaves we have less trouble re-renting. But there is a decision to be made - should you risk losing a good tenant for a $10 increase? Be guided by your Agent, but don’t decline because you want to be kind to the tenant and keep their rent low. One day they will have to leave your home and they’ll need to prove to a new landlord that they can pay the current rental prices. Remember too, this is business.
Pay down debt in the right order
You should pay down non-tax deductible debts, such as your home loan before tax deductible debt, like investment debt.
Use an experienced Property Manager
For a few (tax deductible) dollars a day they will keep your investment returning the highest possible amount, attend to maintenance, pay utilities, collect water usage and deal with the tenant on a day to day basis. Money well spent!