Why ‘Landlady’ Is The New ‘Landlord’

Why ‘landlady’ is the new ‘landlord’ – Think you can’t be a buy-to-let billionaire? Think again

Why landlady is the new landlord

Let’s face it: we’d all love to have a little cash cow. Pottering about in the garden, contentedly munching on the lawn, sedately pumping dollar after dollar into our bank account…

That’s always been the dream with owning property, but most of us believe it’s just too good to be true. Could we be closing our eyes to a whole world of opportunity?

Ok, ok, so maybe the cash cow analogy is a little naive, but owning a profitable property is far more realistic than you might think. So then why do many people, women in particular, fail to even entertain the notion of buying and leasing property? Why is the idea, in our minds, so far out of reach?

Let’s analyse what it is that stops us from seeing ourselves as landlords (or landladies), and what can we do about it. Here are some of the most common misconceptions people have when it comes to owning property.

I’m too young and/or female!

Many women tend to imagine the real estate magnate being an older, besuited, professional gentleman, and perhaps there’s some truth to that. But the world of property isn’t all cufflinks and Rolexes. Many younger, female entrepreneurs are getting involved in the real estate market, and they’re certainly holding their own.

Sunny Sandhu from iProperties says, “Many of our clients in the past few years have been young, first-time buy-to-let landlords, and I’d say the gender divide has been roughly equal”.

Owning property is only for the super-rich, and I don’t have the funds. 

If you don’t have the money, you don’t have the money. And let’s face it, many of us don’t. Seems like there’s no way around this one, right?

Except there is.

Property is a large investment, and the high level of capital required can indeed be a barrier to entry. However, there’s no need to go it alone. Buying a property outright on your own may very well be unrealistic, but doing so is unnecessary. The first-time landlord route may involve what’s called a buy-to-let mortgage, a process which requires a smaller deposit, usually about 25 percent of the property’s value. There’s a wealth of information and how-to’s on the subject, so it’s easy to do some reading up on the subject before you get involved. Plus, it’s smarter than putting all your eggs into one basket.

Additionally, many people choose to go in as a partnership. With a trustworthy partner or partners, this can be a great choice for a first time landlord. Not only are the costs split, but also having other persons equally invested helps a great deal, as you’re effectively splitting the administrative workload, too.

I don’t have the time, knowledge or muscle to sort everything out.

Buying, maintaining and leasing a property may be a full-time job for some, but it doesn’t have to be. There can be a lot to organize and plan, particularly at first, but there are ways of significantly minimising the time spent sorting things out.

Collecting rent and calling maintenance contractors whenever a problem arises is indeed a time-sink. Fortunately, you don’t have to do all of this yourself. If you don’t want to spend your life at the beck and call of tenants with a leaky pipe or defective smoke alarm, do yourself a favour and hire a letting agent to manage rent collection and property maintenance. The time and stress you save yourself by leaving this aspect of property management to a third party is almost always worth it for a first-time landlord.

Additionally, you shouldn’t be intimidated by the prospect of lugging furniture in and out of a flat when tenants move. It seems like a minor thing, but heavy lifting discourages some people from giving property management a go.

For the heavy stuff, hiring a clearance or removals company is a good idea. This is what most landlords tend to do. Rufus Hirsch of Clearance Solutions says, “A lot of the removal work we do is from buy-to-let properties, and it’s usually the landlord who contacts us”.

Time to close: don’t sweat the small stuff.

So give it some thought! The world of property may have long been coined a boy’s club, but it’s a new age. If you’re smart, capable and looking to invest, then that should be all that counts. Get the small bits handled by outside companies, and you’ll be well set to manage that cash cow.

Sarah Arrazola

Sarah Arrazola is a communications professional in Miami, Fla. Her passions focus on Latin American issues, fine art and the digital age. In her spare time she enjoys aerial silks and traveling. As a young professional with experience in the PR industry, she's excited to share her thoughts with you on Your Coffee Break. Follow her on Twitter @sarah_arrazola