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Being a landlord can sometimes be more trouble than it’s worth. Before you buy a property, you quickly guestimate what kind of returns it’ll generate for you. Often, it works out favorably. If you put down a sizeable deposit, you could get fifteen or twenty in return per year – not bad as far as passive income goes. 

But actually getting hold of that money is a constant challenge. Bad tenants are a real risk and, often, you find that your income isn’t passive at all. In fact, it takes up all your time. 

The question, of course, is how to put this entire process on autopilot. The goal is to find ways of making money, without having to constantly worry about tenant changeover, late rental payments, and property maintenance issues. 

Use Software To Automate Rent Collection

Allowing tenants to decide when and how they pay you is asking for trouble. While many will diligently pay you every month, being careful to make sure that you receive every penny you’re owed, many won’t. 

Fortunately, you can now invest in clever pieces of software that will collect payments for you, without either you or tenants having to pay for it. These work via automatic monthly billing through third-party service providers. The only way you won’t get paid is if the tenant actively attempts to block the process, meaning that it’ll usually happen automatically, before they pay anyone else. 

Manage Your Contractors Without Actually Meeting With Them In Person

Meeting up with your contractors before they do work on your properties can be a hassle. If possible, you want to avoid spending your time giving out instructions and telling everyone what they need to do.

Instead, you can organize your contractors on a shared document, like a Google Sheet, so that everyone can see what everyone else is doing where and when. The nice thing about these cloud apps is that contractors can access them anywhere on any device. They can also ask you and each other questions, and arrange their services according to your instructions. You can also do things like add files and share documents, which makes it incredibly easy to keep everyone in the loop. 

Automate Your Bookkeeping

Keeping track of how and where you’re spending money on your property can be a challenge. You often have to carry out more work than you ever imagined necessary, just because of the sheer volume of things that go wrong. 

During this process, keeping a record of all your receipts can be challenging. But, again, software can help. It turns out that you don’t need to store receipts in a folder anymore and then manually enter them into your accounts at the end of the year. Instead, you can just scan them using your phone and then the software will enter them for you. So the moment you get a bill, you can use it to update your accounts. 

If you’re still feeling stuck, you can hire a local bookkeeper every now and then. Or you can simply outsource the tasks to people to do for you online, without ever actually needing to go and see them. 

Cut Down On Paperwork

Setting up a landlord property requires an immense quantity of paperwork. You need a digital paper trail to ensure that you remain compliant with the law. However, doing all of this yourself isn’t what you want when you’re trying to generate passive income from your assets. 

Fortunately, you can cut down on paper work using letting agents. These professionals take over many of the day-to-day more complicated tasks that you can’t easily automate with software. This way, you can avoid being stuck in front of a computer all day, reading through dry lists of rules and regulations, and then trying to work out whether you are following them or not. 

Set Up Cloud Contract Signing

Getting new tenants to sign contracts in person can be a massive hassle. First you have to type and print out the relevant documents. And then either you or the tenant has to travel in person with them to sign them, exchange them, and check everything over. 

Fortunately, in today’s modern world of digital technologies, there are much easier ways of doing things. For instance, with e-signatures, you can get people to sign various forms and agreements over the internet. This way, you can cut down on your field staff and improve the tenant experience at the same time. After all, they’d prefer to avoid the hassle of travelling too if they can help it. 

Automate Screening

Treating each tenancy candidate as an individual takes a lot of time and usually won’t give you the results that you want. It’s critical, therefore, to automate the screening process. 

Perhaps the best way to do this is to hire a screening agent. These professionals simply run through a process of their own to tell you whether rental candidates meet your desired standards. If they don’t, then the screening agent will politely decline the application on your behalf, without you actually having to do anything. 

The Bottom Line

In conclusion, there are now a lot of ways that landlords can take a more hands off approach to their property investments. And, what’s more, many of the most powerful tools are free, potentially saving you a tremendous amount of time.