How many units are manageable? - Posted by RolfeK Mpls/StP

Posted by Jim Rayner on March 24, 2000 at 06:11:32:

Rolfe our experience has thus far has indicated that that it takes one full time person for every 30 units. We currently have 34 units…10 in one location with resident super…10 in another location looking for resident super…14 others scattered all over the city. One resident super works full time on my rehab crew as well, the other will only be part-time. My partner also works fulltime managing the rehabs and i just do the deals, book keeping, and tenant management in addition to still having a fulltime job. I have found that the resident supers are a great plus and eliminate virtually all of the pain in the butt trouble calls. Our current plan is to acquire an additional hundred units this year at which point i will retire from the job and have to devote my full attention to the investments as well as bring on at least one additional full time person.

How many units are manageable? - Posted by RolfeK Mpls/StP

Posted by RolfeK Mpls/StP on March 24, 2000 at 24:30:52:

Hello CREO!

How many rental units are too many to manage?

I own 5 buildings, totaling 8 rental units. My wife and I manage these units, and it’s not at all too much to handle.
We contract out most of the physical work, I show the the available units, she screens applications and handles the leases.

I’m working out the financing for the purchase of 9 additional buildings, consisting of 24 units. Should the deal go, I’ll own 14 buildings and manage 32 units.

How many is too many?

Thank you, never quit; Rolfe

Re: How many units are manageable? - Posted by Laure

Posted by Laure on March 26, 2000 at 22:08:07:

I have 26 (I think? LOL) I am running a retail One Hour Photo store as well as rehab homes for resale. I like to putter around on “my houses” as well. I check on the workers in the morning and then in the afternoon. Usually, I pick up a hammer for a few minutes too. I am in charge of purchasing the materials as well, to keep costs under control as well as quality. The biggest change I have made to make my life easier is renting on L/O. Talk about paying their rent on time !! WOW !!! Also, am using Bronchick’s L/O forms which specify that Tenant pay for all repairs ! What a breeze it has been lately. I am looking forward to 50 SFH in the next two years.

Laure :wink:

Re: How many units are manageable? - Posted by John Butler(Stl)

Posted by John Butler(Stl) on March 24, 2000 at 17:48:15:

My wife and I are managing 35 units(mainly multi’s) and we seem to have a lot of free time. I am still working full time, but she takes care of all calls during the day. We are in a phase right now where we are fixing up units and getting rid of several vacancies, so this is probably not a typical time. I have plans to get some sort of on-staff maintenance person to help us out. We are paying our current handyman too much for our maintenance. We contract out all of our repair work, so this cost can be significant. I would echo other’s comments that multi’s are MUCH more management intensive. I never even hear from my house rentals. They really consider it their home and take care of everything except major problems.

Hope this helps,


Re: How many units are manageable? - Posted by Mark (SDCA)

Posted by Mark (SDCA) on March 24, 2000 at 15:32:17:

I will second most of what is said on here and add a bit. It depends on what your unit mix is. I think 30 SFR is more easily managed than 1 30U building. I think a single person can manage a larger number of SFR. You can and should demand more from your tenants ie expect that the houses will manage themselves. AS you get into multis, that concept goes away. At that point, the on site manager becomes critical.


Re: How many units are manageable? - Posted by CarolFL

Posted by CarolFL on March 24, 2000 at 07:43:11:

Rolfe, we are also managing 30 units … minor stuff is done by my husband, major stuff farmed out. But we get our units in good shape to start with so major stuff is rare.

We have some parttime help for another business who is working on taking over more of the REI paperwork etc, as we will be managing these units from afar for about 6 months beginning this summer. That should be an experience!

Re: How many units are manageable? - Posted by phil fernandez

Posted by phil fernandez on March 24, 2000 at 06:47:05:

Hi Rolfe,

I run 30 units by myself. That’s managing them. I don’t do the physical work, but I do all the showings, screening bookeeping etc. I spend perhaps 5 hours a week doing this. Sometimes not even that amount.

I have often heard that the threshold is about 40 units before your lifestyle starts being altered abit. Others will have their opinions and in Jim’s case he has a system set up for his current 34 units plus the additional 100 he will be acquiring.

Everyone will have a different feel for the amount of units they feel comfortable handling.