Although one of the most enjoyable seasons of the entire year, the holiday season also tends to be one of the busiest seasons of the entire year, as well. It’s easy to get so busy with everything else that you have going on, that managing your property is the last thing on your mind. With how busy and stressed out you may end up being for the remainder of the year, here are a few property management tips to help your holidays go a bit smoother.
No one wants a bad tenant. They can be hard to detect, though. When renting your property, you want the entire process to be smooth. In an ideal world, the perfect candidate would come to your door the exact moment you have a vacancy, and would want to stick around forever. Unfortunately, that’s not always what happens. Sometimes you have vacancies for much longer than you intend, tenants that leave earlier than anticipated, and horrible tenants that you really wish would leave sooner.
A bad tenant will often try to trick you during an application process. Obviously, they want something that you have, the property. They’ll turn on the charm and go to certain extremes to make it seem like their credit and history is a lot better than it actually is. An owner rented property is a lot more likely to be targeted by this sort of bad tenant. The owner of a property is a lot less likely to notice the red flags in a financial history. A property manager has been trained to find these issues and red flags, and can often keep you out of the nightmare experience altogether.
Before choosing someone to live in your property, you’ll want to do tenant screening. You need to make sure that they’re a trustworthy person who will pay their rent on time, and not break your rules. A bad tenant could leave you with months of unpaid rent, and costly damages that need repaired. To ensure that your property is only being rented to the best possible potential tenants, there are a few things during the tenant screening process that should be done:
Former landlords should be contacted to learn whether or not they paid their rent on time and if they were good tenants. You should often contact more than one, to ensure that they have a good history.
Both income and employment verification should be collected.
Run a credit report.
Contact their personal references.
Do a public notice search, to make sure there have never been evictions, bankruptcy, etc.
If your tenant seems to be serious about their job or schooling, they’re more likely to be a good tenant. If they have less to lose(money, school, job, family, friends, pride, reputation) the less you can expect from them as a tenant. If they tend to move around often without reason, this is another red flag that they might not be a very reliable tenant.
Technology has completely changed our world. A few decades ago, the idea that you’d pay your rent or contact your friends electronically was bizarre. Yet here we are, doing almost everything that we do over the internet or from our phones. From paying bills, scheduling doctors appointments, and searching for recipes for dinner. This is all a good thing, though. Technology has simplified our lives. When someone is looking for a new place to live, it would make sense that they would turn to technology to do this. (more…)
No one likes finding new tenants for their property, but it’s often necessary. If you find a tenant that you love, it can be hard to come to terms with letting them go and having to find someone else to fill their spot. As your tenants move out, the issue rises of not only finding a new tenant to live in the vacant property, but also making sure that your property is ready to move in quickly. (more…)
We’ve all been there. No matter how careful you are, you’re bound to break or damage something while renting a property. Whether you live in an apartment complex, or you rent out a home, it can be a nightmare become reality when you break something. The most important thing is to not stress out too much or let yourself make it out to be a bigger problem than it is. (more…)
There are a lot of advantages to renting an apartment instead of buying a new home. You save money every month paying rent instead of a mortgage, and you don’t have to go into debt on a pricey mortgage just for a place to live. It’s also great because it’s less permanent; if you’re new to a city, or you’re considering moving to a new city in a few years, renting an apartment is a really great idea. One of the few downsides to renting a property, however, is that because you’re living in someone else’s property, you can’t make any changes to your living space.
A common complaint among renters is that they can’t decorate the walls. Some people enjoy the clean look of white walls throughout their apartment, while others crave color. Fabric wallpaper is a great way to solve this problem. There are tons of vendors and shops that create and sell fabric wallpapers in limitless designs, so you can customize your space to really fit you and your personality. The wallpaper comes with a sticky back, so no paste is required. When you’re ready to move out, you simply peel the paper off the wall. It leaves no residue and does no damage to the paint.
Command hooks for a gallery wall
Hanging paintings and pictures in your rental property can be a pain, because you can’t make holes in the walls with nails or screws. You can still create the gallery wall of your dreams, though, if you use command hooks instead of nails. They stick to the surface of the wall and then velcro to your frames. They come off easily and don’t damage your walls.
If you’re wanting to update your kitchen or bathroom, backsplash stickers are the best way to elevate your room in a serious way without the consequences of painting or tiling. You can get backsplash stickers at any home improvement store, and the installation is simple. Because they just have an adhesive back, you can easily remove them when your time in your rented apartment is over.
Removable garden boxes
No matter what kind of property you’re renting, whether it’s an apartment or a single family home, you won’t be able to dig up the yard to plant your favorite seasonal flowers. If you’re craving some color and greenery for your home, you can hang planters or garden boxes.
If you are a landlord, then you know the importance of establishing a good relationship between you and your tenant. A good relationship can breed tenant retention, and it can mean more references for you down the road. Nurturing a good landlord-tenant relationship can be difficult, of course, as managing property is a great deal of work, and tenants are not always the most agreeable. Here is a look at some tips to help you establish better relationships with your tenants. (more…)
Real Estate is a pretty good investment, especially here in Utah. There are a lot of properties up for sale, and it could be a really good idea to snag one for renting purposes. There’s a huge market in Utah for renting; a lot of families are opting to rent out houses instead of buying them. This means the opportunity for a property management opportunity in Utah is ideal right now.
There are a lot of different things to consider when you’ve decided to rent out your property. Whether you’re wanting to rent out a part of your current home(like a separate basement apartment, for example), or you’re upgrading to a larger house and so you want to rent out the house you’re leaving behind, or if you’re just looking to purchase a new property with the sole intent of renting it out. It can be hard to keep track of all of the legal and technical parts of being a landlord, and property management can be a daunting task if you don’t have any experience.
Getting a property manager
Especially if this is your first time renting out property, it can be helpful to hire a separate property manager to handle the business with your tenant. You’re less likely to make a legal fumble, which could potentially leave you liable and responsible for costly repairs even if your tenants are at fault.
What a property manager does
A property manager will take care of the day-to-day tasks, leaving you to handle the big picture, rather than the day-to-day tasks. They will generally be responsible for the following:
-Collecting rent from the tenant
-Arrange repairs and see that they’re done correctly
-Serve as the main line of communication for the tenant
-Take care of notices for overdue rent, lease violations, and evictions, if necessary.
-Manage property inspections
In addition to these tasks, a property manager will also take care of any other tasks you need them to, as you discuss. Having a property manager can be especially helpful if you’re moving out of state. It will give you peace of mind if you have a property manager in Utah to make sure everything runs smoothly, since you’re not there to directly oversee the property.
When selecting a property manager, you’ll want to clearly outline what tasks you expect from them, and what decisions are important for them to bring to you to approve before moving forward. Communication is key, to make sure you don’t run into issues down the road.
Whether you’re transitioning from living in your home to renting it out to new tenants, or you’re looking to upgrade a property you already rent out between tenants, making upgrades to your property is never a bad idea. Repairs can be pretty costly, but there are some projects out there that are relatively inexpensive, that will still really improve the look of your rental property.
Paint in general isn’t that expensive, and you don’t need a lot of it to make an impact. Try choosing a cool, neutral tone for an accent wall in a main living area or bedroom. This can add a lot of depth and interest to a room with minimal effort. For example, if all your walls are a light color, such as white or beige, pick a dark grey or mint on one wall in the room.
In the kitchen, consider painting your cupboards. Although this can be slightly time consuming depending on the amount of cabinetry you have, this will really elevate your kitchen. Try either a dark stain or a white paint. Either of these colors will look great with stainless steel or black appliances, and your kitchen will look more modern than the light yellow/brown most cabinets are when you purchase a home.
Add a backsplash
This is a really great way to add some interest in either a kitchen or bathroom. You can get easy peel and stick backsplash tiles at any home improvement store, like Lowe’s or Home Depot. You can also choose from a variety of different colors and patterns. A backsplash doesn’t cost very much to do yourself, but it will give your room a whole new look, and will make it feel more expensive.
Update the lighting
Changing the light fixtures in your home seems like it will be a time intensive and expensive project, but it doesn’t have to be. If any of your lights are dim or dingy, swap them out with a new light fixture. Try a simple chandelier for a living area, or a few pendant lights in the kitchen. If you’re relatively happy with the light fixtures in a room, try installing a light dimmer instead of replacing anything.
Swap out small hardware
Add new knobs to all your cabinets! This will give an entire new look to the room. Also consider switching your faucet out with something new. These are small do-it-yourself projects that will only take you a few hours, but will give your kitchen or bathroom an elevated feel.
Upgrading your rental doesn’t have to be expensive, but small changes like these will increase the value of the property and will attract potential tenants.
Many of us made New Year’s resolutions last month to put more money in the bank every month, and if you’re still not saving as much as you’d like, it’s a good idea to take a look at your utility usage. Winter, after all, can be your most expensive season when it comes to utilities. Do you live in a rental where the cost of utilities varies from month to month? Here is a look at some simple ways you can save on utilities in your rental. (more…)