We have talked many times about purchasing some investment properties. Residential rental properties or vacation rentals. Now is a great time, if you are in the market, as real estate is certainly on the down side. Many investors, especially small time, intend to do all maintenance and repairs themselves. Out of pocket expense would be lower but this doesn't seem to me like a cost effective approach. Hiring a professional management company such as Real Property Management would be a smart way to go. The time spent on individual units could be consuming and having a professional company take on that task would free your time to further your goals and dreams.