If you read property news regularly you may have noticed a surge in stories about landlords leaving the sector in biblical proportions.
Each new piece of legislation that’s passed, every tax relief that’s reduced and an increase in fines and licences makes for a hostile and sometimes unstable environment for landlords to operate in and landlords often vote with their feet.
When that’s all you see it’s easy to get caught up in the noise and start feeling like it’s time to quit, but we think you should hear us out before you consider selling up.
We all know the downsides of being a landlord, but the health benefits are very rarely bought up. This month, for a refreshing change, we’re looking at why being a landlord is good for your health.
Helping Others is Good for You
Most of us get a kick out of helping other people, being a landlord, you are providing the ultimate form of help. A roof over our heads is one of the most fundamental things we need as humans. As a landlord it’s an awesome responsibility and a humbling thing to get right. Every time you house a tenant, you’re providing them with a safe space to live in.
Helping others has some undisputed health benefits aside from a warm fuzzy feeling, helping others has been shown to reduce chronic pain, lower blood pressure and give you a sense of purpose.
Advancing Your Career Can Make You Happy
Around 66% of landlords also have full or part time jobs. If you are one of them, chances are your landlord skills will help you land a promotion or a better career.
Managing properties requires attention to detail, good people management skills, financial management, project management and a whole host of other transferable skills that are sure to impress potential employers.
If you can demonstrate to a potential employer that you’ve grown a property business that will go even further towards advancing your career.
Landing a promotion or a better role can have far reaching health benefits including increased self-esteem and confidence.
Meeting New People Can Make You Live Longer
Being a landlord, you get to meet all kinds of new people, and for your business to work well you need to build good relationships with them.
The tenants you house will have a variety of backgrounds and jobs, if you’re open minded you could end up making friends with your tenants and you may even learn something along the way.
If you attend investment shows and networking events, you’ll meet other landlords and property investors which can have huge advantages. If you find the right people to talk to and make friends with, you’ll have built a support network which is a great source of encouragement and resources to help you grow your portfolio.
Friends can improve our health and longevity and can have a positive impact on your social skills and in some cases your romantic relationships too.
The benefits of having a network of support includes an increased ability to deal with stressful situations, alleviating emotional distress, promoting good mental health and even a lowering of cardiovascular risks.
More Money Equals More Health
Money is one of the most obvious reasons for becoming a landlord, property generally represents an investment, so this isn’t surprising.
It’s long been a trope that the wealthy are healthy, it makes sense. When you don’t have money worries you benefit from decreased stress levels and a wealthier lifestyle is usually a healthier one.
Those with more money can afford better living conditions, a wider range of healthier foods, exercise or other health equipment, better or more education and a whole host of other things that contribute to better physical and mental health.
The more money you have the more people you can help. As your property empire grows you may need to employ others, you’ll buy more properties, house more tenants and in turn you’ll experience the continued health benefits of helping others.
If you’ve got more money you have more control over how you spend your time. You can afford to hire people to help you at home and in work, you can afford holidays and if you’re earning enough you can choose to go part time in work or to give up work altogether. All of this contributes to healthier and happier lifestyles.
Even More Money Equals Even More Health
While tax returns can be time consuming and stressful being a landlord has a lot of advantages when it comes to taxes. There are a lot of tax deductibles you can claim on your tax return and if you are unlucky enough to make a net loss you may be able to write this off against other sources of income.
The current UK tax code is geared up to help reduce the taxes of those who invest in properties. While it may not last forever, and the tax code is regularly updated, it’s still an unequivocal benefit to landlords while it lasts.
From a health perspective, using tax deductions correctly means you’ll essentially increase your tax-free income. We’ve already seen that wealthy is healthy, so those tax deductions will make you happier in the long run. We can’t promise that will balance out the stress of doing your tax return but it’s a good start.
Investments Can Protect You from Viruses
Property is one of the only investment products that you can buy with someone else’s money quite legitimately. Because you can mortgage a property and can invest with a lower up-front capital it means you can see great and relatively fast returns on any initial investment.
If your tenant’s rent covers the mortgage and then some it’s possible to pay off your mortgage sooner, leaving you with higher profit on your rental income and an asset that you can cash in at some point in the future.
Aside from the health benefits of having more money scientific evidence suggests those who are able to delay gratification are actually healthier and less susceptible to viruses. While you get short term monetary gains from your properties the property itself represents a longer-term investment, waiting patiently to release the money tied up in your properties is an act of delayed gratification.
Sweat Equity Can Make You Happy and Healthy
It is possible to increase the value of a property through what’s known as sweat equity. Things like re-decorating, landscaping, adding double-glazed windows, cladding etc. can add value without significant financial investment.
Improving the property will also make your tenants happier and happy tenants usually equal happy landlords.
You get bonus health points if you’re the one carrying out the home improvement projects. There’s something very gratifying about starting and completing a project, so you can expect a mental health boost from working towards and completing a project. These kinds of projects invariably involve exercise, so you can expect some physical health benefits too.
Be aware though that this can backfire, if you aren’t good at home improvement projects, hire a professional or you could end up stripping value from your property following a disastrous DIY attempt.
Work Life Balance Reduces Stress
The health benefits of maintaining a good work life balance are undisputed, because running a property business is usually a lot less hassle than running other types of business, being a landlord results in a better work life balance which means physical and mental benefits galore.
If your tenants are settled and you have a good relationship with them, your rent payments will keep regularly coming in without you having to contribute very much. It’s not completely hands off though, there will be occasional repairs and admin work, but if your property is in good shape, you’ve got happy tenants and your finances are kept in order your properties can represent a low maintenance investment leaving you more time to do whatever makes you happy. If you’re struggling to maintain a good work life balance you’ll find some good tips on maintaining a work life balance here.
Long Term Security is Essential to Health and Wellbeing
Feeling secure is fundamental to our health and wellbeing. Without a feeling of security, you’ll experience increased stress which has numerous negative effects on our health.
If you’re a landlord with a job, that means you’ve got more than one stream of income. Should a tenant stop paying rent, there’s a large expense at one of your properties, or something else happens to threaten your rental income then you also have a job to rely on. If you lose your job, then you have property income to rely on. In extreme cases, should the worst happen, you’ve got an asset that you can cash in or a house you can live in.
Be Your Own Boss to Improve Your General Health
There’s been little research into how self-employment affects our health, but a recent study suggests that being your own boss, in most cases, has a positive impact on your mental and physical health.
Many landlords find managing their properties rewarding because they are in charge. This feeling can be quite intoxicating to someone who’s always worked as an employee. Being a landlord means all the decisions, costs, budgets and every other aspect of your property business is under your control.
Work Where you Want to Improve Work Life Balance
It may be an extension of the point above, but it’s no less a benefit. Because you are the landlord and you are in charge, you can do any admin associated with your properties pretty much whenever and wherever you like. If you fancy a holiday or you’re taking a long train journey, or you prefer to sit in a coffee shop you can.
If you’re using a great property management software like Landlord Vision, it’s even easier to work wherever you are with a cloud-based system and apps for almost every device.
The health benefits of this come from a happier and healthier work life balance. When you can work on the go, you can get more done while doing the things you love. Happiness equals healthiness.
There’s so much more to being a landlord than the bad stories in the press. The truth is, negative stories get more attention, so you’re more likely to see them. The reality is that being a landlord can be great for your health if you’re doing it right.