So after saving for several years my dream of owning a home finally came to reality in 2004. Soon after returning from an amazing trip in Europe, traveling all across Spain and Portugal, I pushed through some of my fears and purchased a 3-bedroom, 2 bath condo townhome paying $212,000 for it.
At the time that seemed like I was paying sooo much!
The market was at a high point and I really wasn’t sure if it was a good time to buy, but I really wanted to my own place, so I finally made it happen.
Soon after, I realized the house was more than I needed so I rented out my basement for $500 as-is…no shower, no closet, just a basement room with carpet and a bathroom…and yes no shower!
This was my initial introduction to becoming a landlord and passive income!
It wasn’t glamorous, my new tenant signed a simple one-page document I drafted on my own and paid me in cash every month. That very first tenant rented from me for about 6 months, which is pretty remarkable as the unit had no shower, however I was able to convince him to get a membership at the local gym and shower there ?. The person worked with my mom, who had mentioned I had just bought a house, so I didn’t have to do any advertising.
Once that tenant moved out, I decided to do a full renovation of the entire house. The basement unit received a significant upgrade. I added a full-on kitchen and a shower in the bathroom and tiles throughout. Just as we were installing the kitchen a lady walks in and tells me she wants to rent the unit for her son.
After some basic screening, I decide to sign him up at $900 a month, and he stayed with me for 4 years, up until I got married.
That one basement tenant covered by entire mortgage payment, so I was living practically for free.
My taste for passive income was beginning to grow….!
Here is a picture of one side of the bachelor unit after renovated and occupied:
You can see a little bit of the stand-up shower I had installed for the unit: