US Workers Shortage – It’s a Bad Time Being a Landlord


Okay, I so have a bunch of water issues. Whenever, I picked up the phone and call somebody, they’re all like 2-3 weeks out just to come take a look, and another 2-3 weeks to schedule. So, that, my friend, there is a shortage in skilled worker.

Anyhow, there are a bunch of things that’s been happening.

#1. Craigslist is NO LONGER FREE. They’ve started to charge $5/listing in my area. $7 in the midwest.

I’ve been lucky enough to have some people in my circle to do the job. But since the economy picked up. People found job for big companies again and they’d rather do just that instead of working for odd jobs.

#2. Minimum wage – I’m not against paying people the wages they deserve. Only when my handyman are now charging $40-$80/hr, it’s kind of absurd. On that note, even when the government leave the minimum wage the same, the wages will go up by itself, no need to raise the minimum wages.

My  response to this:

#1. I should raise rent to offset the increased taxes, insurance, and maintenance cost

#2. Avoid being obnoxious landlord and sell the properties, let someone else doing the dirty job.

I’m leaning toward selling my properties, make less money, and don’t have to worry about raising rent to navigating through this labor shortage.


On the positive note, I’ve been out of town attending 2 graduations from my niece. I gave each one $2000 for scholarship. I hope they use the cash wisely. Mr.W wanted me to give them stocks, so they can hold on forever, but I don’t want to go through the trouble buying notes from banks.

One of my nieces graduation top 5% of her class.

The other niece didn’t do too bad, she got minimum 5 AP courses. Her school is like northern Virginia material, where 91% involved in some sort of school activities. 80% take AP classes. 40% took more than 5 AP courses (That’s more than 1 college semester.)

Back to my busy life.



  1. I don’t envy your choices but life is always fluid – basically a balance between the risk/reward ratio and the degree to which you value the time involved. I’m in Mr W’s corner but you could also reward your nieces via low cost company DRIP plans on birthdays to establish a foundation for them.

    • Mr.W was happy to see you siding with him. 🙂 I was home for a brief time, it’d be a hassle for me to get the stock stuff straighten out.

      It’s mind bogging for me when seeing my niece who could have had a full scholarship to my alma mater but she chose to be “far” away from home. Regardless, how “spoiled” they are – the best of cell phone, no need to have a job, their only job was to do well in school. I guess, amongst that also “no boyfriend” rule. I guess that’s why she wants to be far away instead of being practical.

      Oh well, at least she chose a state school, but my sister will feel the financial heat by the 2nd semester comes around.

  2. I’ll quickly admit that I’ve started to learn to fix things around my house due to the already exorbitant prices they quote you in Maryland. I am however not a landlord and do not have to deal with more houses! Hope all is well with you Viviane?

    • I actually do a lot of stuff myself, but there are something like climbing, super dirty plumbing stuff, heavy lifting … etc. I’d rather paying somebody to do the job. As it could take me a whole day vs somebody would do it at a fraction of the time.

      Some of the thing is plain out boring, like painting, and I could have a fresh out high school student painting with me for $10/hr, so why not? But even those guys are hard to get them now, as they hold steady job at $20/hr?!! And with these guys I’d have to be there every step of the way, or they couldn’t get anything done.

      The national unemployment rate is 3.8% or less, in my State, it less than 3% now.

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