by Ben Luxon June 21, 2019 3 min read

This is especially true for new landlords, but getting that first property to make a profit can be difficult. It requires a steep learning curve to build the right team and learn how to deal with everything that can possibly go wrong.

Here are 5 ways you can cut costs to help get your property into the green.

1. Do repairs yourself

Many of the repairs that need to get done around the house are minor and could easily be done by yourself. For more major projects you will want to hire a professional though!

A leaky faucet, clogged toilet, a lick of paint for example are all simple tasks that you could likely tackle yourself, and would cost you an hour or two of a skilled labourers time which could quickly rack up into the hundreds of dollars.

However, a more major task like installing or upgrading new plumbing is generally best left to a professional plumber. Also, unless you’ve got the training and/or experience to do it don’t try to try to remove lead paint yourself, or adjust electrical wiring.

Here are a few more jobs you should be able to tackle:

  • Caulking in the bathroom.
  • Repairing drywall.
  • Gutter maintenance.
  • Stained Bathtub.
  • Fix a leaky pipe.

You can easily Google the best way to do these odd jobs and watch tutorial videos on Youtube.  Make sure you’ve got all the appropriate equipment for the work.

5 money saving ideas

2. Shop around for the best contractors.

Having a contractor you trust for callouts is pretty much required for landlording. For all those jobs you can’t fix, or when you’re simply not available.

However, good ones are expensive and it’s definitely worth getting a good one on the books.

It’s always worth getting multiple quotes for a big job before it gets tackled. Otherwise you could find yourself overpaying by a substantial amount.

3. Show the property when it’s occupied 

Managed right, this tactic can save you a huge amount of money in lost rent as it will significantly reduce the vacancy period of the property.

It means you will be showing the property whilst the previous tenant is still living there.

Inform your tenant when you will start showing the property (you could even have a clause in the lease informing the tenant of this possibility). Reassure them you will be as respectful as possible to their schedule, give them at least 24 hours before you show and limit the number of showings you will do.

You could also offer a little bit of an incentive to your current tenant, offer to send a cleaner round for example (this will help ensure the property is in good condition for the showing - but also who doesn’t like having a free cleaner?)

Ultimately, though you will have to judge what is appropriate with your current tenant.

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4. Find and screen applicants yourself

Many property managers charge a finder’s fee. This can be equal to one month’s rent or more. And they’ll charge you whenever the property manager finds you tenants. The finder’s fee is usually added on to the normal fee.

You can avoid these fees by managing your listing yourself. It requires a bit more hands-on time, but you could save yourself thousands.

Thankfully, modern technology has made getting your property out in front of a huge number of great tenants pretty easy.

There are a host of great websites that you can try. Listing on each of these has its own quirks, many are completely free - others are low cost. Try a few and see what works best for you.

Read: 11 Top Websites to list your Properties on

Once you’ve got your list of prospective tenants you will need to screen them to ensure you get the right tenant.

Read: How to Screen Tenants like a Boss

money saving ideas

5. Use the right property management software

Using the right software will save you time, keep you on top of your finances and make the process for end of year tax submissions a whole lot easier.

Landlord Studio App is a mobile first application that allows you to log payments, keep track of tenants and easily automate professional reports for your accountant with the click of a button.

Ben Luxon

"Ben is a co-founder, author and real estate enthusiast. His interest in all things entrepreneurial has led him to work with real estate professionals all over the world, distilling their knowledge into articles and Ebooks. His love of travelling has taken him to over 10 countries in the last year, where he has sampled the craft beer of them all."

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