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Old 05-07-2011, 12:42 PM   #41
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Not time (cause rental income is unearned income - landlord labor is just for fun), but $.50/mile for us for a rental expense last year - I'm sure Nords is all over that one if it's of any value!

Haven't had the way distant rental property or stones to try it, but if CliffP were to buy a Vegas rental and use it less than 2 weeks/year I think his trips from the island - for business only of course - would be deductible.
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Old 05-07-2011, 03:37 PM   #42
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High quality article about landlording to actually make money in the June 2011 Kiplinger's magazine.

IMO, in no way is this a diversification from passive or relatively passive investments. It rapidly becomes a demanding business.

Ha
The article covers one approach to rental income. My approach is very different. I bought a nice two family in Boston. The area is really nice, close to Harvard and within walking distance of shops, good schools and public transportation. I've rented to grad students and young couples and as I live in the upstairs apartment I can keep an eye on things. The rent Is $1200 a month as I like my tenants, but it will be going up to $1400 when they leave. Positive cash flow after taxes and expenses is $900 a month. I have to fix the odd leak and replaced a water heater and a waste disposal last year, but it's no more than any home owner needs to do. The rental income is about 50% of my ER income requirements and as I bought a good house in a great neighbourhood I have a $200k capital gain even with the money I spent on upgrades, new siding and the housing crash. Like anything it's best to buy quality rather than trying to make a quick buck and having the worry of managing multiple cheap rentals.
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Old 05-07-2011, 03:57 PM   #43
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We bought what we could afford as soon as we could, fixed 'em up, and have made solid returns for 25 years or so by managing multiple cheap rentals. I loath Section 8 housing though - had dealt with the housing office and don't care for them a bit. That said, we do have a couple Section 8 tenants still; an old lady and a gal we've rented to for 20 years or so. Don't care to jump through unnecessary government hoops to make money. Can evict people in the winter but it pisses me off.
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Old 05-07-2011, 07:16 PM   #44
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Have you ever tried to deduct your time? Hiow about gas?
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Not time (cause rental income is unearned income - landlord labor is just for fun), but $.50/mile for us for a rental expense last year - I'm sure Nords is all over that one if it's of any value!
I keep a spreadsheet of the dates that we've been at the rental house or shopping for it at one of Oahu's many fine home-improvement retail outlets, and then I multiply by the mileage from our house to the rental or from the rental to the stores.

Never bothered to keep a specific mileage log or track gas purchases.

I also track spouse's mileage & uncompensated expenses to her two non-profits. I'm also building a spreadsheet to track my angel investing expenses, but that's a pretty discouraging exercise.

Quote:
Originally Posted by calmloki View Post
Haven't had the way distant rental property or stones to try it, but if CliffP were to buy a Vegas rental and use it less than 2 weeks/year I think his trips from the island - for business only of course - would be deductible.
It's been over a decade since I had to do this on a tax return, but IIRC the plane ticket & lodging were fully deductible, as was the rental car & gas. (GPS and a DVD player might be dubious.) Phone expenses were fully deductible. I think meals were 50% deductible if someone mentioned the words "rental" and "taxes" in a sentence.

We went through this exercise with our Hawaii rental when we were stationed in San Diego. One of us would fly out every six months or so for a week or two of temporary duty at a training command, and spend evenings/weekends working on the house. We also squeezed in a couple family vacations with power tools.
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