Reduce Expenses

In case you haven’t heard about the $100 Expense Reduction Challenge, let me bring you up to speed. In March 2013, I dared BiggerPockets Nation to reduce their rental property expenses by $100 per month. If anyone was successful, I’d send them a $20 Home Depot gift card.

Deborah B. crushed the challenge saving $261.78 per month by adjusting her rental insurance and now I get to join her in the winner’s circle!

A Journey to Finding $100 in Monthly Savings

It’s a hodgepodge of methods, but here’s how I finally pieced my savings together:

$30 per month by asking tenants to voluntarily contribute $10 each month towards the complimentary Wi-Fi I was providing. Three tenants began adding $10 onto their rent payments. I plan to make a donation request once a year.

$22 per month by having Ambit Energy credit monthly referral bonuses. I referred 15 customers to Ambit’s less expensive natural gas service so now Ambit credits my natural gas bill each month. How cool is that?! My official results are pending, but I’ll post a copy of my bill once it comes in.

$50 per month by buying deeply discounted Home Depot store credits from people on Craigslist. Once I noticed I was spending over $150 each month at Home Depot, I decided to take advantage of the secondary market for gift cards and store credits. I have enough contacts now that I can consistently buy store credits at 30% + discounts and I maintain a reserve of discounted cards so I never run out. Farwell Home Depot financing!

$70 per month by reducing my vacancy rate. Just because I’ve been a landlord since 1996 doesn’t mean I do everything well. One of my biggest mistakes was waiting for a …read more