Currently I own 12 houses. I live in one of those and two are held by my retirement account. Since I won't be able to touch my retirement account for a few decades, I never report the income I receive from those two properties or the expenses associated with them. That leaves 9 properties that I rent and report in my monthly income: 4 townhouses, 1 condo, and 4 single family homes. They all are located in the Birmingham, AL metropolitan area.
When I moved to Florida in 2012 I planned to hand off the management of my Birmingham properties to a property management company. The plan was to do this whenever a property changed tenants. After turning over the first two (both are townhouses), I sat back and watched how my property manager performed. Frankly I have been disappointed. When I managed my properties I never had more than a couple of weeks of vacancy. One reason for lower vacancy was that I accepted tenants with blemished credit, while the management company has supposedly tighter standards. Vacancy is probably the biggest expense a landlord has, so I give the management company an "F" when it comes to placing tenants. It took about 6 months for each property to be rented, and one of the tenants has been nothing but drama (so much for tighter standards).
Of the 7 remaining properties, one has been handled by a different management company since I bought the single-family home in 2009. I've had the same tenant in that property, and all is great. The other three single-family homes are also doing well, as each has had the same tenant for years. That leaves two townhouses and one condo. The condo is low maintenance, but its small size and nosy neighbors means I have a lot of turnover. Fortunately, my exiting tenants have always referred the next tenant and there has been zero vacancy at my condo. One of the other townhouses has an excellent, low-maintenance tenant: I placed the tenant in August, 2012 and have had zero calls from the tenant for service. The tenant has his rent deposited directly into my account as a payroll deduction through his employer. The last townhouse is the one I am always considering evicting. The tenant has been with me for three years, and he's always behind on his rent. But, every time I am about to evict him, the tenant pays up.
My Frugal Miser's 1H 2014 Rental Property Income Statement
Mortgage Interest: $4,340
Personal Interest: $1,004
All Other Expenses: $11,658
Net Income: $23,626
Year to date, the largest expense was property insurance ($4,879), followed by mortgage interest. Nearly $3,000 was spent on repairs and improvements for the condo, primarily for the laminate floors which replaced the carpet throughout the condo.
For the first half of 2014, I had nearly $4,000 per month leftover after all my rental property expenses were paid.