Landlord by accident and Loving it

Some say that cohousing was a transformative experience for them. For me it was a personal workshop that I would’ve preferred to have done without. However, like everything, I did develop some new skills.  

Since I ran away rather quickly and selling a house in cohousing can be tricky to find the perfect match (ie that the house and community is perfect enough for picky buyers), I ended up becoming a landlord.  I found my renters on Craig’s List and they were awesome. I was appalled to find out most in the community never really tried to get to know them which is what I feared – my taint as a social pariah even though I never told them a thing of what happened.

It was so smooth being a landlord, especially since the house is shiny and new.  The only issue we ever had was a rogue fire alarm.  

Yet, since I didn’t live in the house for two years, selling the house would come with a penalty tax. I don’t think Uncle Sam would accept my excuse (but my neighbors were evil and I had to go).  Renting it out also made it an investment house so selling it and avoiding the taxes, I had to buy another investment house.  Fine by me. I accidentally found out I enjoy being a landlord, I enjoy remodeling, and I love that others pay my mortgage and someday my children will inherit these properties (and cash out on them)

So, we closed early and three days ago  I bought a new property. This one will be rented out to a friend I’ve know from my previous work. Plus, it has an in law suite. I can rent that out as airbnb and my friend will help run it. One of the frustrating things about renting out my house was that every time I needed to come back to that town (I do have family in the area), I had to pay for a hotel. That problem is now solved – I”ll stay at the airbnb wing!

Since I was a landlord in  cohousing, I thought it’d be different. I thought I’d help the renters out with navigating cohousing and we’d have a more friendly relationship. Nah, it became pretty traditional and I know they deserve the distance (I made a file for all my leases years ago and labeled it “Landlord Assholes” so I get it).  Now, I will have that. This is my friend so we are already friendly.  And, in perfect intentional community style, her husband’s cousins nd his wife will live in the place too. So we will be 3 families at the times I”ll be there. Again, I”m not going in thinking we will all get along lovey dovey, but this time, I”m sure it won’t be a shit show of conflict.  And, unlie cohousing, if it does go south, I can just sell the house – no extreme buyers with a million demands and expectations for what they thought cohousing would look like.  (luckily the market has changed and all the people who were part of the big conflict in our cohousing and even others since then are now easily selling their houses and getting the heck out)

Now I”m a real landlord and with real issues.  At cohousing it was smooth with a new house. This house, not so new. Older than my friend moving in.  So, what is the worst thing that can happen in the summer? Yep, the air conditioner broke. The first night we slept in the house, both units broke (the window one in the airbnb suite too!)  

So, here I go, another adventure but this one looks much sunnier!

Don Knotts (middle) as the Landlord on Three’s Company sitcom

About CJ

I was a Spanish teacher for 5 years in the Public School system in 3 different states. I homeschooled and taught at a democratic free school. I heard about cohousing in 2010 and wanted to move in right away. I met a group building one in 2018 and got to move in the summer of 2019. It only took a year to want out.
This entry was posted in moving in and out of cohousing, selling house, Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink.

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