Thursday, July 19, 2012

We've come full circle as Landlords

We spend a lot of time joking about how we own 3 homes...and wish we owned one. Being a landlord is a means to an end for us. We've been very fortunate in recent years to have great renters.

Most of our friends know about how our experience as a Landlord started. Our first renters were Meghan's best friend Beth and her husband. Less than a half year into their time renting our Rochester house, we had a catastrophe. Sewer water flooded the house and destroyed our entire lower level and tons of Beth and Karls property. In the coming months, God came through in amazing ways for both us and them though and in the end it felt like we were being blessed through the tragedy. Our faith was increased greatly through that event.

A year or so later, we decided to relocate back to Minnesota. We struggled to sell the house and thought (incorrectly) the market was bottoming out so we decided to rent out our house. It was our first time renting to strangers and we had NO clue what we were doing. We were so excited to get renters and move on that we overlooked things and made a poor decision. In the end our poor decision cost us over $5000 in lost rent and damages. After trying to amicably collect this from the ex-tenants (who moved out willingly) we gave up and sent it to collections about 4-5 years ago. We wrote it off mentally as a loss, money we'd never see again but hoped that eventually these people would want to restore their credit and their name and would pay us back the money owed. Today, amazingly, I received a check from our collection agency from this renter. I literally couldn't believe my eyes. I hope they continue to make these payments (looks like they are making 10 payments) but the fact that they even made one payment is amazing to me.

We only get half of the debt (the agency earns the other half...which I am happy to pay them for actually collecting on it) but almost $3000 is way better than NOTHING. Feeling so blessed and hopeful this continues so it can end with a happy resolve!!