Sooner or later you will have to work on the weekend as a landlord, but how much and how ofter depends on these 12 things.
You can't decide when something is going to fail or when an emergency is going to happen. Even if your rental is new and you keep everything in perfect working order there are things outside your control (like somebody driving into your building... happened to us).
Some emergencies can be mitigated until a weekday during working hours but others will require your immediate attention. A broken toilet in a two bathroom rental is something that can wait for reasonable hours, but a broken pipe filling a basement isn't; you're going to want to drop everything and get yourself or somebody else to the property to prevent further damage. If nobody else is available because it is the weekend you will be there, turning the water off and finding a solution.
Number of Rentals
The number of rentals will often determine how often you work on the weekends. If you have a lot of rentals or a lot of work to do you are probably going to be working on the weekends, there is just too much to do to take 2 days off. In most cases when you have work to do it is because something is unfinished and unfinished work usually costs you money. Most landlords don't want to take a weekend off when they have a vacant rental to get ready that could be making money.
Type of Rentals
Long term rentals take less of your time because they tenants settle in and usually require very little of your time outside of emergencies and maintenance of the property. The most time intensive times are when they move out and you need to get a new tenant moved in.
Short term rentals take much more of your time. If you are handling booking requests, guest questions, and cleaning then it is very likely that you will be doing any or all of these things any day of the week, including weekends.
Full Time VS Part Time
Full time landlords have more flexibility to schedule work when they want to do it. They can decide to only work from 9-5 Monday - Friday and for the most part not work much outside of those hours. The work during those hours is likely to be inconsistent, depending more on what needs to be done than just putting your time in as you would at a 9-5 job.
Part time landlords have much more limited time during the week so weekends are a valuable time to get work done. Landscaping, painting, repairs, and upgrades are competed much easier on a weekend than after a day of work. Although many landlords and property investors still manage to get a lot done after work, depending on how committed they are to their projects.
You might have family commitments during the week or on the weekends that you as a landlord will have to work around. If you, your spouse, or kids have events during weekday evenings then the weekend might be the best time for you to work on rental tasks.
If you have limited time during the week there are some maintenance jobs that you just won't have time for. Painting is more efficient when you have more time to do it so you don't have to clean your brushes and rollers after a short painting session.
You can get a lot painted over a weekend so it makes sense to save these more time intensive projects for when you'll have a larger block of time to work on them.
Sometimes you need to do something to a unit that is inconvenient for the tenant to be there. If you need to shut off the water to the unit to replace some plumbing and the tenant plans on being away for the weekend it is a win-win if you are able to perform the work while they are out. You will be able to work easier with less distractions and the tenant won't have any need for water while they are away.
Tenants commonly utilize their extra time on weekends to move in our out of your rentals so you'll probably find yourself needing to be there to help. There are different strategies to let tenants move in or out unassisted but many landlords still like to be there to make sure things go smoothly and everything is taken care of properly.
Finding New Tenants
Similar to above, tenants will commonly use their weekends to look for a new place to rent. Being available to answer questions and show a unit on the weekend will significantly increase your ability to find a new tenant quickly. Depending on your market some tenants will be happy to move on the the next rental on their list if you aren't response in answering their inquiry.
Depending on where you live stores can close late or require a decent amount of travel. Many landlords will wait for a weekend to travel and shop for the supplies they need. This could be appliances, furniture, hardware, furnishings, or traveling out of town to get a very specific item or deal that isn't available locally.
Garage Sales are another place where landlords can find useful things for their business. Finding cheap tools, furnishings, or other supplies you might be able to use in the near future could end up saving you a lot of money. It is also a great way to find unique items that might make a rental more appealing. Garage sales rarely happen during the week so you'll have to do these on the weekend too.
It's pretty common for landlords to keep an eye out for new opportunities and deals. If you're looking for a new property to invest in you'll probably find yourself out looking on a weekend. It's a great time to drive around looking for distressed properties, getting to know the area, and/or attending open houses.
Some folks like to wait until the weekend to organize and file the weeks activities and plan for the next week. GovernRent is a tool we built that can help you do exactly that. You can tally up all of your labor, expenses, miles driven, store your documents and receipts, inspection and project photos.
Many Landlords don't typically spend much time keeping good records until they've been painfully impacted by not having them. Setting up good record keeping habits and using tools like GovernRent in the beginning can really pay off.