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I am a semiconductor electrical engineer and am married to a computer scientist. We’ve got great credit, (didn’t let that go while un-employed,) a 6mo+ nestegg, an on-target 401k and a few college savings plans, and no debt besides mortgage debt (on 2 houses). We’ve got 3 out of 4 kids out on their own, so not yet empty-nesters. I’ve got 1 rental house and 1 personal house.
I bought a personal home in ’00, turned it into a rental when I moved out of state in ‘08 because the current housing sales prices were a down and falling in that area. Sales have been sluggish in Albuquerque, since I moved, so I’m still renting it. I contemplated refinancing it since it was at 7%, but once it became an investment property, financing was much less attractive. I decided to dump what funds I would have spent on closing costs into it instead and am targeting a payoff date Q2 of 2017. I’m very excited about that, despite delays due to spotty income.
For the rental upkeep, I’ve had to replace my plumber since he retired, but am satisfied with the old plumbers referral, and I’m trying a new handyman out this week, we’ll see how that goes. It’s difficult managing this long distance, but currently I’ve got some great tenants that are return clients: 3 ministers in the “vicarage” who I’ve incentivized to stay by offering a rate below market.
I plan on doing a 1031 exchange when the climate is a little better for my current rental in Albuquerque. At that time I hope to buy 2 closer by. We should save very quickly when the debt on the 1st rental has been wiped out, then we’ll be poised to buy a 2nd rental despite the Albq market. While we are waiting I plan to go to the tax lien sale in the next few months and cross my fingers and hope that either they don’t/can’t pay the lien back or at least they pay it back right away. IF I’ve got my act together to buy the following 2 years of liens on the same property(not by lottery), AND IF they don’t get their act together to pay their taxes then I’ll eventually get a deed or something equivalent in 4 yrs or so. A lot of IF's, but if not, I’ll reap some decent interest payments and have a little more for my next down payment. The only down-side I see is that the auction for tax liens against standard residential properties is by lottery in this county. You bring in funds, as much as you’re willing to spend, and you don’t know which properties or how many you’ll end up with, if any. I may not get a house in an area of the county that has much demand for rentals, but in this area that might mean it’s suitable for sales as vacation home, or perhaps airbnb material.
Has anybody out there used airbnb frequently? What are the advantages, disadvantages, surprises and lessons learned dealing with that or a similar ventures?