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Postcard from a landlord

I was talking to my travelling buddy Colin this morning over breakfast on the roof terrace of the Elios Hotel Ho Chi Min City in Vietnam about my latest article. He suggested something inspired by my latest global wanderings.

I don’t know whether you have ever been to South East Asia. It includes the varied delights of the very prosperous ex-colonial Malaysia with its’ soaring office towers and mega shopping malls, to the very poor but rapidly growing countries of Vietnam and Cambodia.

One common strand about them all is ‘enterprise’. From very small children, all the way through their life people are educated on a diet of hard work and industry. If you don’t work and make money…you don’t eat. Brutal….but there is a simplicity and an honesty that we in the west have lost.

The reality for many landlords is that most of their hard work occurs in the early stages of buying a property, finding the property, the acquisition and financing and then the fit out of the property.

The three pillars of successful residential investment

However, once the initial hard work is done the actual letting of the property, particularly in the present booming rental market shouldn’t be too difficult. Then in the words of JayZ “it’s on to the next one.” and before you know it, you are sitting hopefully on a hat full of income generating properties.

Anybody who has carried out a property refurbishment as I have many times; knows the early morning starts, the slog of getting material to site and the frustrations of giving instructions to trades people who do not or will not listen.

This work is often ran alongside other full time jobs and careers as landlords strive to establish their property investment portfolios whilst working as teachers, web designers, solicitors or whatever. Landlords share the belief that through their personal ‘enterprise’ they hope to gain ‘a freedom through financial security’, each landlord has a personal vision of what this ‘freedom’ will look like.

By working hard to establish myself as a landlord with a reasonable sized portfolio, I now have the luxury of the time to muse, this is my ‘freedom’.

For the many poor in Asia; hard work is a never ending necessity that I continue to observe with mixed feelings, both of guilt and relief at the fortunate position that property investing has placed me.

Wish you were here.

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