By in Business

Off To Ventura On Business

You won't see much of me here tomorrow because we are meeting a prospective tenant in . It's a three-hour trip one way from Paso Robles, not counting rest stops. I am a reluctant traveler on these day trips. Many times they are futile and disappointing if the deal doesn't seem right or the tenant appears not to be financially viable.

Currently we have two commercial tenants occupying the two downstairs shops. One is the Sticky Fingers Bakery, which sells many gluten-free goodies. You can see some of them in the display case in the top photo. In the photo below, you see the front of the bakery. That's the owner you see sitting at the table through the window. They have quite an active Facebook page and do a good business.

I took the photo.

The other business, the one pictured below, is attaboy Vintage, an antique store. It's now something else, since the owners decided they would do better selling on eBay. I will take a photo tomorrow of what it is now. What you need to notice is the stairway leading upstairs. The upstairs unit is the largest of all of them. It is divided into three rooms. That is the unit we are hoping to rent tomorrow. The woman says she is sure she wants it. Two other prospective also said that, and then would not supply the needed financial information on the application for us to make a positive decision.

I took the photo.

We will travel through some lovely country in Santa Barbara County on the way. We normally take 101 to Highway 154 through Pass. We vary this a bit now because Buellton has the cheapest gasoline so we stop there. Then we take Highway 246 through Solvang to meet Highway 154 before we pass Cachuma Lake. The photo below shows a part of Cachuma Lake we saw when we stopped on the way home after one trip to walk the path near the Bradbury Dam Observation Point. That was in November, 2013, and the lake had been hard hit by our California drought. I wonder how much more the level has gone down now, with little rain having fallen since then.

I took the photo.

I'm not sure what new adventures await us tomorrow on our journey, but I do hope the trip contributes to our renting the upstairs space. It has been vacant for much too long, and we do need the income. But renting to the wrong tenant can be a nightmare. Maybe sometime I'll share some of those horror stories.

Is anyone else here a landlord?

Pictures and content are original and may not be used without permission, B. Radisavljevic, Copyright 2014, All Rights Reserved


Image Credit » I took the photo

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bestwriter wrote on August 7, 2014, 2:43 AM

i do not see why you would be bored with this trip looking at the pictures. Talking of Santa Barbara it took me back to my own experience. We were travelling by train (Amtrak) from San Jose to Oxnard - a straight line journey along the sea coast of California - my dream. Yes. one of my bosses lived in San Diego and he had talked about this train line 200 km long straight along the beach. As we reached Santa Barbara we were informed that the train will not go any further and that we would be put in a bus for our onward journey. I enjoyed that bus journey which went through a lot of greenery of Santa Barbara.

JanetJenson wrote on August 7, 2014, 3:06 AM

I had a prospective tenant who after a friend showed him the apartment, begged me to drive over 200 miles to meet with him, take his cash deposit, and show him how to work the appliances and thermostat and stuff, and on the day he was to move in, after calling several times to confirm, he was a no-show. It is frustrating.

SandraLynn wrote on August 7, 2014, 5:18 AM

Safe travels and hopefully a new and trustworthy tenant(s). Yes, I know the landlord tale. Yuck. I won't say never again; I'm rather glad to not be dealing with it just now ;) Good luck with all of it!

LoudMan wrote on August 7, 2014, 10:41 AM

I can't say I'd ever want to be a landlord on purpose. I've heard too many horror stories and I can't guarantee I'd have the disposition needed to remain calm enough to handle things legally and proper and all that. :) Thanks for this submission to the contest.

BarbRad wrote on August 7, 2014, 11:05 AM

I would enjoy the trips more if we could stop more along the way and get out and walk around, but usually we only make a couple of rest stops. All the scenery is not this impressive. The travel itself is hard on my body. I shouldn't be sitting for such long stretches without being able to getup and walk every few minutes. Also, we have made this trip so many times there is rarely anything new to see unless we are able to stop and take a walk.

BarbRad wrote on August 7, 2014, 11:07 AM

Exactly! We had to make three trips for a tenant who said one thing over the phone and then would try to bargain us down after we made the trip.

BarbRad wrote on August 7, 2014, 11:08 AM

Thanks. I never count my chickens until they are not only hatched but running around.

BarbRad wrote on August 7, 2014, 11:10 AM

Landlording is not my first choice. My husband sees to like it and he handles most of it, but now that we're so old and either of us could drop dead any time, he wants me to be more involved.

UmiNoor wrote on August 7, 2014, 11:35 PM

My husband is also thinking of becoming a landlord when he retired in 7 years time. I find that is a good way to retire and still have an income. We were also thinking of opening up a lodging house or a resort since one of my daughters studied hotel management. She could manage the business for us. I hope your trip is fruitful and when you come back, you'll have much to tell.

BNelson wrote on August 7, 2014, 11:49 PM

Nope I am not a landlord, I think I would be too stressed, mind you I would love to have money to build a bunch of small houses and just be able to give them away to deserving families, hard working people that have struggled and just not been able to make a go of things.

BarbRad wrote on August 8, 2014, 2:38 AM

For sure people need places to live, and not everyone can afford to own their homes or even want to anymore, so owning property can be a good investment, especially if you live in a tourist area. I will have a lot to tell as soon as I have time to tell it. First thing tomorrow, though, I will have to work on getting a tenant credit check and I can't remember whom we dealt with last time.

BarbRad wrote on August 8, 2014, 2:45 AM

I also find it stressful. I hate evictions. My husband is more hard-nosed. The truth is, though, if tenants don't pay their rent, landlords can't pay the mortgages on the properties and the upkeep of the rental units and if the property is foreclosed on, the tenants are likely to be evicted by the next owner. We have bent over backward to accommodate one of our former tenants. I liked having her there. She would only pay part of the rent every month, though, and it became evident that she would never catch up and she really wasn't trying very hard to get new work. (She was self-employed. We hired her ourselves to try to help out, but she preferred surfing to working. She was taking advantage of us and thinking we would never evict her because we had been patient for over a year. )

UmiNoor wrote on August 8, 2014, 3:01 AM

That is one of the downside to being a landlord. I don't think I too have the heart to evict anyone especially if they have a family. Perhaps this tenant of yours should think about getting a roommate to share the rent with if she can only pay part of the rent.

BarbRad wrote on August 8, 2014, 1:10 PM

She was not the original tenant. We first rented it to one of her employees that she vouched for. But it's a long story. It deserves its own post.

OldRoadsOnceTraveled wrote on August 9, 2014, 8:04 PM

I hope you had some success. It'd be great to get that space rented.

BarbRad wrote on August 9, 2014, 11:54 PM

I think we will be signing the rental agreement tomorrow -- here. Thank God we don't have to make another trip. She is on her way to Monterey tomorrow and will stop here.

OldRoadsOnceTraveled wrote on August 10, 2014, 1:48 AM

Excellent! That will be such a relief for you.