Property Management Blog

How to Be a Long-Distance Landlord

Pinnacle Property Management - Friday, April 15, 2022

long distance landlord

Are you a long-distance landlord? Do you have properties in many different states or neighborhoods?

If so, this post is for you!

Being a long-distance landlord presents unique challenges compared to landlords who live near their rental properties.

If you own properties far away, you must learn how to manage them well to achieve your investment goals. 

In this post, we are offering our top tips to succeed as a long-distance landlord.

1. Choose Trustworthy Tenants

Picking renters that can be trusted makes your work as a landlord easier. Since being a long-distance landlord offers you little room to make mistakes, it’s important to place the right tenants in your property.

When you live far from your unit, it’s more difficult to perform quick inspections. It might take a long while before you’re able to swing a visit to your rental unit. Having great tenants helps ensure your rental is kept in outstanding condition.

To attract good renters, it’s vital to adopt a screening process that enables you to conduct extensive credit and background evaluation, as well as understand their rental history. Even if it takes a bit of time and effort, it’s worth having peace of mind when you have wonderful tenants occupying your property.


2. Encourage Open Communication

Once you’ve landed high quality renters, you have to cultivate a good relationship by keeping the lines of communication open. This is especially valuable for long-distance landlords who are not physically around to check the rental site. You’ll be relying on your renters to report property issues right away so you can address the problem.

Ensure your tenants have your updated contact details so they can reach you anytime. This can motivate them to call or message you if they encounter a problem. 

3. Schedule a Yearly Visit to your Rental

Take time to book a visit to your rental home at least once a year. You’ll feel more reassured once you’ve seen that your rental home is in an excellent state and your tenants are happy and comfortable. It can be risky to depend solely on your tenants’ reports on the condition of your rental. As a responsible landlord, it’s your duty to inspect your rental in person every now and then.

And don't forget: Being a long-distance landlord can entitle you to some tax deductions when it comes to visiting your out-of-state properties. You can fully deduct your expenses as a tax benefit. 

bathroom inspection

4. Be Aware of your Competition

Since you’re running a rental business, it pays to know what’s happening in your neighborhood. Living a great distance away can be a disadvantage given that you’re less connected to the surrounding community. There may be updates on government policies and other important changes that can affect the rental landscape. 

Without your presence, it may be too late to size up the competition or the new factors that influence the growth of your real estate investment. For instance, your area may suddenly become a hot location but if you’re not privy to this information, you may fail to adjust your rent prices to match the new environment. It could also happen in reverse. You may end keeping the rental rate high even when economic conditions are down resulting in tenant turnovers.

As a long-distance landlord, part of your responsibility is keeping up with the local news so you can keep track of the new developments that can affect your rental property. 

5. Check Out Local Resources

As a long-distance landlord, it will help you to have access to local resources. Property repairs are bound to happen. If you live close to your rental, you can immediately engage the services of local contractors and vendors. However, when you live far from your rental home, you’ll be hard-pressed to resolve the situation quickly even if it’s a simple matter. 

Having local resources ensures that prompt resolutions are available. Have a list of the local repair services team and coordinate with your trusted repair partners. Otherwise, you’ll be forced to search for new vendors whose services are still untested. This can be a risky option and can be a source of conflict with your tenants. 

6. Hire a Local Property Management Company

A sound alternative for long-distance landlords is to seek the services of a local property management firm, such as Pinnacle Property Management. 

house and key

A quality property management company can readily respond to any property needs, even when the long-distance landlord isn’t around. This covers marketing vacant rental units, running tenant screenings, creating leasing agreements, collecting the rent on your behalf and more.

A property management firm can be the contact point for tenants when they have problems that require immediate solutions. 

Most important of all, having a local property management company on your side helps you oversee the condition of your rental home while you’re away. They can be trusted to perform extensive property inspections before a new tenant moves in. They can also be counted on to conduct the yearly property walk-through inspections.

Bottom Line

As a long-distance landlord, you have many challenges, but we hope these tips were helpful!

With these tips, you’ll be able to succeed and achieve your investment goals, even if you live far from your properties.

For more information or to work with a property management company, contact Pinnacle Property Management.

Call us today at (310) 530 0606. 

Pinnacle Property Management
CA DRE # 01905815
22700 Crenshaw Blvd.
Torrance, CA 90505
Ph: (310) 530-0606
Fax: (310) 626-9786

We are open from 8:30am to 5:00pm M-F.

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