Thursday, October 9, 2008

Finishing the story

I apologize for not finishing the story.  We got the roof put on, and Kevin got the property rented to a family from North Carolina for $1900/month.  They wanted to rent it starting October 1, which is a little later than I hoped, but strangely enough coincident with the date of my first mortgage payment.  Kevin got the first $950 as his 1/2 month (well, he had to split it with Phillips Real Estate, his company).  So at least I had some income to go with my first mortgage payment.
As I mentioned before, this house is a 4 bed/1 bath.  This is not the optimal configuration.  We're going to ask the renters (once they move in) if they'd like for us to add a second bath in the basement and raise the rent.  We'd like to spend <$5000 and raise the rent $200 so that we can recoup the cost in around two years ($200x24 = $4800) and then we get the incremental income.

We also got the house on Corliss Ave rented starting 9/15, so we ate 2 weeks of vacancy in which we had to paint the house and clean up the yard.  This ends up being a quite expensive month, since the yard and paint was about $1k, plus about $900 lost due to the vacancy.  All this adds up! 

One additional note:  I ran into a friend the other day and he asked me how the economy and housing market is affecting my houses (he calls me a land baron).  It turns out it's affecting my stock portfolio significantly more painfully.  Houses are down nominally about 5- 7% in Seattle, while my stocks are down 30+% from peak.  Of course if I actually tried to sell my house, it would probably be significantly worse than the 5-7%.

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