October 7

How To: Use Your Home as an Investment Property for Active Duty Military in North Carolina

Are you an active duty military member stationed in North Carolina and looking to maximize the financial potential of your home by using it as an investment property? In this guide, we will explore the key considerations and steps you need to take to utilize your home as a profitable investment property. From understanding the tax implications to deciding whether to self-manage or hire a property manager, we’ve got you covered.

Key Takeaways:

  • As an active duty military member in North Carolina, you may need to pay North Carolina income tax on service pay, but there are exemptions for legal residents of other states stationed in North Carolina.
  • Owning a rental property requires you to complete an IRS Schedule E form annually and may involve capital gains and recaptured depreciation taxes when you sell the property.
  • You have the option to self-manage your rental property, but hiring a property manager can provide convenience and expertise.
  • When selecting a property manager, consider their experience, qualifications, fees, and track record to ensure the best fit for your investment property.
  • Effective marketing, thorough tenant screening, and proper maintenance and repair management are essential for successful rental property ownership.

Now that you have an overview of what to expect, let’s dive into the details of using your home as an investment property for active duty military in North Carolina.

Understanding the Tax Implications

As an active duty military member using your home as an investment property in North Carolina, it is crucial to understand the tax implications that come with owning a rental property. Owning a rental property can provide you with a source of income, but it also means you will need to navigate the complexities of the tax system.

One of the first things you’ll need to do is complete an IRS Schedule E form each year. This form is used to report your rental income and expenses, allowing you to calculate your net rental income or loss. It’s important to keep accurate records of your income and expenses throughout the year so that you can accurately complete this form.

In addition to reporting your rental income, you may also be subject to capital gains taxes and recaptured depreciation taxes when you sell your rental property. Capital gains taxes are based on the profit you make from selling the property, while recaptured depreciation taxes may apply if you claimed depreciation deductions on the property during the time you owned it.

Income TaxCapital Gains TaxRecaptured Depreciation Tax
Owed on rental incomeOwed on profit from selling the propertyOwed if depreciation deductions were claimed
Reported on IRS Schedule EReported when you sell the propertyReported when you sell the property

Understanding the tax implications of owning a rental property is crucial for minimizing your tax liability and ensuring compliance with the IRS. Consider consulting with a tax professional who specializes in real estate investments to help you navigate the complexities of the tax system and maximize your tax benefits.

how to invest in real estate while active duty military

Once you’ve decided to use your home as an investment property, the next question is whether you should take on the responsibilities of self-management or hire a property manager. Both options have their advantages and considerations, so it’s important to evaluate your capabilities and needs before making a decision.

If you choose to self-manage your rental property, you have control over every aspect of the property, from marketing to tenant screening to maintenance and repairs. It allows you to save money on property management fees and have a hands-on approach to your investment. However, self-management requires time, effort, and knowledge of landlord-tenant laws and regulations.

If you prefer a more hands-off approach or simply do not have the time or expertise to handle the day-to-day operations of managing a rental property, hiring a property manager can be a wise choice. A property manager will take care of tasks such as marketing the property, screening potential tenants, and handling maintenance and repairs. They have the experience and expertise to handle these responsibilities efficiently and effectively.

When selecting a property manager, it’s important to do your due diligence. Look for a reputable and experienced company with a track record of managing properties similar to yours. Ask for references and inquire about their qualifications and fees. A good property manager should have a thorough understanding of local rental market conditions and possess excellent communication and problem-solving skills.

Table: Pros and Cons of Self-Management vs. Hiring a Property Manager

Self-ManagementHiring a Property Manager
✅ More control over your investment✅ Hands-off approach
✅ Cost savings on property management fees✅ Expertise and experience
✅ Flexibility in decision-making✅ Time and stress savings
❌ Requires time and effort❌ Additional cost
❌ Need knowledge of landlord-tenant laws❌ Potential lack of personal touch

In conclusion, the decision to self-manage or hire a property manager ultimately depends on your personal circumstances and preferences. Consider your time availability, expertise, and willingness to take on the responsibilities of managing a rental property. Whether you choose self-management or hiring a property manager, ensure that you prioritize effective marketing, thorough tenant screening, and a well-planned approach to maintenance and repairs to maximize the success of your investment property.

Factors to Consider When Selecting a Property Manager

If you opt to hire a property manager for your rental property, it’s essential to carefully choose the right professional who meets your specific needs and requirements. The property manager will play a crucial role in the success of your investment, so thorough evaluation is necessary. Here are some factors to consider when selecting a property manager:

  1. Experience: Look for a property manager with experience in managing rental properties, particularly those catering to active duty military personnel. They should be familiar with the unique challenges and requirements involved.
  2. Qualifications: Verify that the property manager has the necessary education, certifications, and licensing required to manage properties in North Carolina. This ensures they have the knowledge and skills to handle legal and financial aspects effectively.
  3. Fees: Discuss the property manager’s fee structure and ensure it aligns with your budget and expectations. Clarify what services are included in the fees and any additional charges that may be applicable.
  4. Track Record: Request references and testimonials from other property owners who have worked with the manager. Their track record should demonstrate success in managing properties, maintaining high occupancy rates, and effectively addressing tenant and maintenance issues.

By carefully evaluating these factors, you can make an informed decision when selecting a property manager for your investment property. Remember, the right property manager can alleviate the burden of day-to-day management, ensuring optimal returns and peace of mind for active duty military investors.

Example: Table Comparing Property Managers

Property ManagerExperienceQualificationsFeesTrack Record
ABC Property ManagementOver 10 years managing rental propertiesCertified Property Manager (CPM) designation10% of monthly rental incomeHigh occupancy rates, positive tenant feedback
XYZ Property Solutions3 years of property management experienceNo specific qualificationsFlat fee of $200/monthModerate occupancy rates, mixed tenant feedback
123 Real Estate ServicesExtensive experience managing properties for military personnelMilitary Housing Professional (MHP) certification8% of monthly rental incomeHigh occupancy rates, excellent tenant and maintenance feedback

Consider using a table like the one above to compare different property managers based on their experience, qualifications, fees, and track record. This will help you make a side-by-side assessment and choose the property manager that best fits your investment goals and requirements.

Marketing Your Rental Property

Successfully marketing your rental property is key to attracting potential tenants and ensuring a steady stream of income from your investment. There are several effective marketing strategies you can employ to maximize the visibility of your property and generate interest from prospective renters.

Online Marketing

With the majority of people searching for rental properties online, it’s crucial to have a strong online presence. List your property on popular rental websites and include high-quality photos that showcase the property’s best features. Write a compelling description that highlights the unique selling points of your property, such as a desirable location or upgraded amenities. Consider creating a virtual tour or walkthrough video to give potential tenants a better sense of the property.

Offline Marketing

While online marketing is essential, don’t underestimate the power of offline marketing strategies. Place “For Rent” signs in front of your property with contact information for interested parties. Utilize local classifieds and community bulletin boards to promote your rental property. Additionally, networking with local real estate agents and attending housing fairs or community events can help spread the word about your property.

Attracting Potential Tenants

When marketing your rental property, it’s important to target the right audience. Consider the unique features of your property and identify the ideal tenant demographic. Tailor your marketing efforts to reach this specific audience, whether it’s through targeted online advertising or distributing flyers in local businesses or military bases. Highlight any amenities or conveniences that would appeal to active duty military personnel, such as proximity to base or military-friendly lease terms.

Marketing TipsEffectiveness
Create a visually appealing and informative online listingHigh
Utilize social media platforms to promote your rental propertyModerate
Offer incentives like discounted rent for referralsModerate
Consider partnering with local relocation services or military housing officesHigh


Thorough Tenant Screening

Proper tenant screening is vital to protect your investment and avoid potential issues with problem tenants. Conducting thorough background checks, credit checks, and evaluating rental history can help you make informed decisions and choose reliable tenants for your rental property.

When screening potential tenants, start by requesting a completed rental application form. This will provide you with essential information such as employment history, income verification, and references. Use this information to verify their income, confirm their employment status, and contact their previous landlords to gain insight into their rental history.

Additionally, performing background checks can help identify any criminal records or prior evictions. Use reputable online services or hire professional screening companies to obtain accurate and reliable information. Remember to inform potential tenants that you will conduct a background check as part of the application process.

Screening ChecklistAction
Background ChecksVerify criminal records and prior evictions
Credit ChecksEvaluate their financial responsibility and creditworthiness
Rental HistoryContact previous landlords to assess their behavior as tenants

In addition to background and credit checks, consider meeting potential tenants in person. This will give you an opportunity to assess their character and gauge their level of responsibility. Trust your instincts and maintain open communication throughout the screening process.

tenant screening for rental property in north carolina

By thoroughly screening potential tenants, you can minimize the risk of problematic tenants, ensure a smooth rental experience, and protect your investment property.

Handling Maintenance and Repairs

Ensuring proper maintenance and repairs for your investment property is essential in creating a positive rental experience for your tenants and protecting the value of your home. Regular maintenance and prompt repairs help to keep the property in good condition, attracting and retaining quality tenants while minimizing potential issues.

When it comes to property upkeep, it’s important to establish a routine schedule for tasks such as landscaping, cleaning common areas, and inspecting the property for any needed repairs. By staying proactive, you can address maintenance issues early on, preventing them from escalating into more serious and costly problems.

In addition to regular maintenance, it’s crucial to have a plan in place for handling emergency repairs. Unexpected issues like plumbing leaks or electrical problems can arise at any time, and having a reliable network of contractors or service providers who can respond quickly is essential. Make sure to communicate with your tenants about how to report emergencies and provide them with emergency contact information for maintenance issues.

Maintenance and Repairs Guidelines
Establish a routine maintenance schedule for landscaping, cleaning, and inspections.
Address maintenance issues promptly to prevent them from becoming more serious problems.
Maintain open lines of communication with tenants for reporting and addressing emergency repairs.
Have a network of reliable contractors or service providers for handling emergency repairs.

By taking a proactive approach to maintenance and repairs, you can ensure that your investment property remains in good condition, attracting and retaining high-quality tenants who will treat the property with respect. Regular upkeep and prompt attention to maintenance issues will help protect the value of your home and contribute to a positive rental experience for both you and your tenants.

active duty military members investing in real estate

Using your home as an investment property can provide numerous financial benefits, including the potential for passive income and long-term wealth-building. By renting out your home, you can generate rental income that can supplement your regular income and help you build wealth over time.

One of the main benefits of using your home as an investment property is the potential for passive income. Rental income from tenants can provide a steady stream of cash flow, allowing you to cover mortgage payments, property taxes, and other expenses associated with owning the property. This passive income can provide financial stability and help you achieve your long-term goals.

Benefits of Using Your Home as an Investment 
Potential for passive incomeGenerate rental income to supplement your regular income
Wealth-building opportunitiesReal estate investments have the potential to appreciate in value over time, building wealth
Long-term financial stabilityRental income can provide a stable source of income and help you achieve long-term financial stability

In addition to passive income, using your home as an investment property can also offer wealth-building opportunities. Real estate investments have the potential to appreciate in value over time, especially in desirable locations like North Carolina. As the value of your property increases, so does your overall wealth. You can also take advantage of tax benefits associated with owning rental properties, such as depreciation deductions and deductions for property expenses.

Lastly, utilizing your home as an investment property can contribute to long-term financial stability. By diversifying your investment portfolio with real estate, you create another source of income that can help you weather financial uncertainties. Real estate investments are known for their resilience, and owning a rental property can provide a sense of security and peace of mind for your financial future.

investment property in north carolina

In summary, using your home as an investment property offers financial benefits such as passive income, wealth-building opportunities, and long-term financial stability. By carefully managing your investment property and taking advantage of tax benefits, you can maximize the financial rewards of owning a rental property.


In conclusion, using your home as an investment property for active duty military in North Carolina requires careful consideration of the tax implications, decision-making on self-management or property manager hire, and effective property and tenant management.

Tax Implications: When it comes to owning a rental property, you will need to complete an IRS Schedule E form to report your income and expenses. Additionally, there may be capital gains and recaptured depreciation taxes to consider when selling the property.

Self-Management or Hiring a Property Manager: If you choose to self-manage your rental property, it is crucial to effectively market the property, thoroughly screen potential tenants, and have a plan in place for maintenance and repairs. Alternatively, hiring a professional property management company can alleviate the stress of managing the property yourself. When selecting a property manager, be sure to evaluate their experience, qualifications, fees, and track record to ensure they are the right fit for your investment property.

Effective Property and Tenant Management: Regardless of whether you choose self-management or a property manager, it is essential to prioritize effective property and tenant management. This includes maintaining open lines of communication with your tenants, addressing maintenance and repairs promptly, and ensuring the property is well-maintained. By taking these steps, you can maximize the benefits of using your home as an investment property for active duty military in North Carolina.

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About the author

Adam Adkins is the Managing Memeber for NC Fair Cash Offer. Over 8 years personal and hands on experience working with homeowners and property owners of all types. Adam has dedicated himself to providing excellent service to all real estate professionals and home sellers.  He enjoys making win-win situations and buying houses fast. As an investor, he does a combination of "buy and hold", buying "subject to existing mortgage" and "fix & flip" strategies.

(910) 335-4046