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  1. There is no "great" way to be an absentee landlord. In my experience, management firms will usually not do a good job for you, especially if you only have one house. It's like it's not worth their time and they are expensive. I think the best scenario is to get really good tennants and leave them with a list of approved repair people. Possibly a plumber, electrician, and handyman that you know will do a good job for a reasonable price. Stipulate that they call you if the repair is over say $150 for an authorization to do the work. You don't want to get into a situation where someone tells them the roof needs to be replaced and they are saying they don't owe you rent for the next eight months. Of course it is difficult to tell up front who will be really good tenants. Check their references thoroughly, do a credit report. Have them fill out an extensive rental contract. In my experience if someone isn't willing to give you all the info you ask for or fill out more than one page, there is something wrong. The problem with this is when they decide to vacate the property; you will need to go back to Florida to get it rented again. Again, it's up to you. Renting houses can be a dream or a nightmare and you need to decide if you still want to be involved. I would recommend you go back to they property every six months to make sure it is being taken care of if you get a management firm. I have had out of state properties where I went back after a year or two only to find the management company had let the property fall into a bad state of disrepair. I have also tried to self-manage these properties and have had tenants leave and not even tell me. So, you're trying to get in touch with them for a month and find out the property is vacant. Renting properties is not for the faint at heart. The suggestion to find a real estate agent that is doing this on the side might be a good one. In most markets the real estate business is down right now and I'm sure some of them need some extra income. Good luck to you and I hope it all works out.
  2. So, what if people just posted positive experiences to get it going? At least that would give people some place to start when they want to look for property or hire a contractor. As trust builds maybe the rest would follow. I put my contractor on there because he has been amazing. I have no hesitation in recommending his services. If more people would just post the people they have had great experiences with then at least there would be a place for people to start looking and making contacts. CC
  3. Hi Bob, I'm coming down 8/21 and probably staying at the the Cariari B&B if that works. Only catch is I'm not a semi-professional anything. Cindy
  4. Happy Birthday TG, Thanks for all the information you provide to us everyday; in your own special style.......... which I appreciate greatly! Y muchos mas! Cindy
  5. Hi Michael, What is your time frame? We are building two houses south of Quepos and they probably will be done somewhere around October; we will live in one and rent the other. They are about 2km from the beach and have a gorgeous ocean view; there will be a pool, satellite internet. The only down side of the property is it is on the intercoastal highway which right now is in rough condition; however, they have started a large grading and bridge refurbishing project which I'm hoping by October will make the road a lot easier to navigate. Not sure what we'll rent it for, haven't got that far yet! If you're interested, contact me and I'll send you pictures. cindy@ccobb.net.
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