Archive for April, 2012

RENTAL PROPERTY – RENOVATION – GETTING THE MOST BANG FOR YOUR BUCK!

Renovating Your Property and Getting the Most Bang for your Buck

When you are updating or renovating your investment property, it is important that you put your money where your prospective Tenants will appreciate it most.  First and foremost, get that cottage cheese (acoustic) off of those ceilings!  This can be done by having your painter scape the acoustic off and re-texture and paint or “skin” over the acoustic, tape, bed and texture and repaint.  The skinning is particularly effective if your acoustic ceilings are full of asbestos . . . and many are.

Next is to restore those tired and dull fiberglass tubs and showers with epoxy paint and resurface your double dark 1970’s cabinets with a lighter color.  contact a “tub restoration firm to do this.  They typically apply an epoxy paint product which is mixable to most any color you wish.  I do recommend though, that you have the professionals do this job.  The paint is highly toxic and a bit tricky to work with.

Next, hardware; update all the old door knobs, towel bars and toilet paper holders with the latest finishes; bronze or brushed nickel (note: be sure to do this BEFORE you paint).  Now you are ready to update your light fixtures.  When you match them to your new killer hardware, it ties the look of the property together in a great looking package that your prospective tenants will love.  Our experience is that the big box stores are your best resource for these products for price and selection.

As always, thank you for reading!

Pat & Kris

We have also put together a short video on this subject CLICK HERE to view it.

If this information has been helpful, visit our website to find more helpful property management tips: ManageToMakeMoney.com

Advertisements

, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Leave a comment

MANAGE YOUR RENTAL PROPERTY – MANAGING CHANGE

Change of Terms

I remember the first time I heard the statement “The only thing in life that is constant is change” it was quite an epiphany for me. After all, in many cases, we would all love to keep things the way they are and in managing rental properties it is no different.

We all know that changes will also come along when it comes to our rental properties… changing of Tenants (typically in a roommate situation), extending the lease, allowing a pet and requiring a pet deposit or changing the amount of rent (typically along with the extension of the lease.) What about taking care of the legal side of these changes? Do you have to completely re-write the lease and all the documents that go with it (gee, I hope not!)? Well, the answer is NO! In fact, we strongly recommend that all of the original documents stay just exactly as they were when they were first executed. Changing everything only increases your chance of making an error or an omission… there are simply too many little check boxes and blanks to fill in to hope to get them all exactly as they were on the original. So what to do? We have found a document that makes dealing with all of these changes literally a “piece of cake” and it is a “Change of Terms”.

The Change of Terms actually relies on and embraces the original lease documents and it’s language is very simple. The Change of Terms state: “All terms and conditions of the lease for the property: 123 Change Street, Beautiful California, (your property’s address), Dated January 1, 2020 (original date of your lease document)remain unchanged except for the following: (this is where you spell out the change): The term of the lease has been extended until December 31, 2022, and the rent amount effective January 1, 2021 will be $2,050.00 per month.” Everyone signs and dates and life is great!

In summary: Change is nothing to be feared with your rental property. With the “Change of Terms” you can deal with the change handily and focus your efforts on something more productive like… looking for that next property!

As always, thank you for reading!

Pat & Kris

 

We have produced a short video on the subject of using the Change of Terms.  CLICK HERE to see it.

If this tip has been helpful to you, please visit our website at: ManageToMakeMoney.com where you will find the “Change of Terms” I spoke of as well as many more tools, tips and techniques for managing your rental property profitably.

, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Leave a comment

RENTAL PROPERTY MANAGEMENT – ALWAYS COLLECT MOVE IN FUNDS IN REAL MONEY!

ALWAYS Collect Move In Funds in REAL Money

By: Pat Larkin

Don’t take unnecessary risks with people you don’t know. When you have a Tenant moving into one of your properties ALWAYS collect the move in funds in Cashier’s Check or Money Order.

When you have someone getting ready to move into one of your properties ALWAYS collect the move-in monies in “Real Money”. When you have a Tenant getting ready to move into your property, typically you will trade them the keys to the property for their final balances due; deposits and first month’s rent, etc. Always collect these funds in what we call “real money”… cashier’s check or money order. To help your case, be sure that you state in their lease agreement that “only cashier’s check or money order will be accepted when paying final move in amounts.” This way, you have discussed the issue with them and they have signed off agreeing to that. In fact, depending on how much time is between them paying their holding deposit and their move in, if there is not sufficient time for a personal check to clear their bank, you may want to require that all funds paid by them are “real” money also. If you do allow for the holding deposit to be a personal check, make sure that it has cleared their bank before you give them the keys to your property.

Why go through all this “dain bramage”? Well, unscrupulous Tenants have been known to pay their move-in funds with a personal check, get their keys and promptly stop payment on their check. Then the Landlord (you) have given possession to the Tenant, have no money, no income and a couple of months of legal wrangling to look forward to before you can get your property back. And don’t forget about the make ready costs to market your property again!

In summary, don’t take unnecessary risks with your property. Always collect move in funds in REAL Money.

To view a short video on this same subject CLICK HERE

Thank you for reading!

Pat & Kris

For more tips and forms and educational tools to help you to effectively manage your rental property, please visit our web site at: ManageToMakeMoney.com

RENTAL PROPERTY WORKSHOPS:

Don’t forget that we are in California for the next couple of weeks doing these very affordable rental property workshops all over the state.  If you or anyone you know could benefit from learning more about the day-to-day management and how to profitably deal with the challenges of managing rental property . . . these workshops are just what the doctor ordered!  CLICK HERE to find a workshop in a location near you.  We hope to see you there!

, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

1 Comment

RENTAL PROPERTY MANAGEMENT – WORKSHOPS

“Buying low cost property and renting it is a great way to create wealth and constant cash flow, but it can be tricky and very non-productive and even a disaster if you don’t know how to do it properly and profitably.”

Mike Rounds

There is so much to be said for education, and what an integral part of our life it plays . . . except when it comes to managing rental properties.  Many of us take high level, intellectual courses that deal with a lot of great theory but many of those fail to get to the heart of managing rental properties . . . having systems and procedures in place to deal with the down-in-the-trenches, day-to-day issues of managing properties.

I hesitated this morning to write on this subject.  Because we are so involved in teaching our workshops, I didn’t want to come off as a shameless marketer.  OK, perhaps a bit of marketer is creeping in but my motivation for this subject this morning is mainly from the perspective of letting you know about a valuable resource.  We have taught our Rental property workshops to thousands of participants and where we really get our pay off is in seeing the “lights going on” when one of our students “gets it”!

Oriented for professionals and novices alike, these workshops deal with the roll-up-your-sleeves issues such as: Getting your property ready for market, Marketing your Property, Listing your property for lease, Leasing your Property, Collecting Rent, Dealing with Challenging Tenants, Tenant Move out, Dealing with Homeowner Associations and Property Maintenance.  Through our years of owning and operating one of the largest residential property management firms in Orange County, California we have come up with lots of systems, processes, forms and documents to make management easier.  In our classes, we share this stuff with our students so that every time a situation comes up, they aren’t caught “flat-footed” having to re-invent the wheel . . . again . . . and again!

We will be starting our workshop tour next week in Northern California and then moving to Orange County and San Diego and then back through the Midwest.  If you know of anyone in those areas . . . property manager . . . property owner managing their own property . . . someone thinking of buying rental property, please forward this posting to them.  Click here for our Workshop Schedule and More Workshop Information.  There is good information to be gained through these workshops and/or our books and other resources offered at our web site.  Click here for Rental Property Management Resources

See what people have said about our workshops:

“I’ve done everything wrong!  Pat and Kris showed that there are “do-overs” and that I can learn from my mistakes, turn my property around and do a good job of managing it!”

Workshop Participant – Pasadena City College

“I came back and took the workshop a second time because I learned so much the first time and the instructors are so down to earth, I wanted to learn more!”

Workshop Participant – Sierra College

As always, thank you for reading!

Pat and Kris

, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Leave a comment

RENTAL PROPERTY MANAGEMENT – RENTER’S INSURANCE

Why Renter’s Insurance

Did you know that if your Tenants have no renter’s insurance, it could leave you liable?  Always require that your Tenants buy renter’s insurance with $100,000 liability and, with you named as additionally insured.  This is a win-win for you and your Tenant; the insurance is relatively inexpensive, it covers the Tenant’s contents in the event of a loss (water intrusion, fire, etc) and covers you in the unfortunate event that someone is injured in the property . . . fall down the stairs, slip and fall and so on.  So what’s up with additionally insured language?  That names you as insured just like your Tenant, that way should the Tenant cancel the policy or fail to pay the premium, you, just like your Tenant will receive the cancellation notice.  Otherwise, you will have no way of knowing if the Tenant’s renters insurance is still in effect.  Make renter’s insurance a requirement . . . not an option!

Click here to view a sample document we recommend you give to your Tenant’s AND have them sign.  03.17 Insurance Facts for Residents SAMPLE

We have a complete assortment of 62 documents, Forms and Checklists which can be easily downloaded from our website.  Check them out.

Thank you for reading!

Pat & Kris

, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Leave a comment

RENTAL PROPERTY MANAGEMENT – COLLECTING RENT

Collecting rent is really the “Ground Zero” of managing your rental property.  If you are not receiving rent from your Tenant, then you can’t pay your mortgage, do maintenance (at lease not from your rent revenues) . . . . it can put quite a strain on the whole rental property system.

Collecting rent is really one of the main focuses of managing rental properties.  After all, if you are not collecting rent, then a whole other set of actions have to come into play, like evictions and so on.  But before you get to that point, when your tenants are not paying their rent on time, many times, they need some prodding or “encouragement”.  The form of this “encouragement” that I recommend is issuing a “Three Day Notice to Pay Rent or Quit” which, essentially is a threat.  I am telling my tenant that if you don’t pay rent within three days, I am going to evict you.

First of all, let’s talk about what the three day notice to pay rent or quit really is; as I said before, it is a threat.  I like to think of it more like a promise . . . here is my resolve . . . this is the hill that I am willing to die on.  This is my business, and I am sorry if you are having problems paying rent but if you don’t, then I will have to start the eviction process.  The Three Day Notice is really much more than a threat or a promise; in many states, it is a legal requirement.  In many states you cannot start the eviction process unless you can prove that you have served the Three Day Notice AND three business days have passed since you did serve the notice.

We are all familiar with the mother who makes the ever-familiar threat to her kids: “I’m counting to three . . . don’t let me get to three!”.  She is threatening them with who knows what if she should ever get from 2-1/2  to 2-3/4 all the way to three!  Just like that mom, we have to be prepared to act on our threat or just save ourselves the effort and let the Tenant be in charge of paying rent whenever they please.  This is why I strongly recommend that you have a good relationship with a reputable eviction attorney . . . to back up your threat should you need to.

We have initiated the eviction process many times but followed through all the way to a full eviction very few times.  Again, having that relationship with a good eviction attorney is worth it’s weight in gold when it comes to showing your resolve to your Tenants.   Keep in mind, now that we have started the process, we have incurred some attorney fees and the Tenant will have to pay his rent, any late fees AND whatever the attorney fees at that time in order to be reinstated and stop the eviction process.

In summary, you will have to show your resolve to your Tenants when it comes to collecting rent.  Having a good eviction attorney on your team is a good way to show them you mean business!

To view a short video on this same subject CLICK HERE

VISIT OUR WEBSITE  to see the full array of rental property management resources as well as their latest live seminar schedule.

 

As always, Thank you for reading!!

Pat and kris

 

, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

4 Comments

RENTAL PROPERTY SYSTEMS – HAVE THE RIGHT FORMS

Rental Property Forms and Documents

The forms and documents you use in managing your rental properties set the tone for how under control or out of control your management really is.  Legal documents are very important and do a lot to set the stage for the period you will be working with your Tenants.  But the forms, checklists and letter templates . . . if you have never experienced certain situations . . . you will be “re-inventing the wheel” each time a new challenge presents itself.  Let’s take for instance that challenging Tenant of yours who throws one of those off-the-wall requests out there . . . how are you going to respond.  We have developed a “No” letter which, in a very polite way explains to your Tenant that you understand their request but per section XYZ of their lease . . . you will not be able to accommodate them.  Kris and I have experienced a lot of tough and challenging situations in managing investment properties and consequently have created forms, letter templates and checklists for nearly every situation . . . we got tired of re-inventing the wheel every time something came up!  Our life lessons are for your benefit!  this is not necessarily a sales thing but rather . . . making you aware of a resource that is out there which will make your management of rental properties more efficient, timely and more profitable!

See what others are saying about our forms and documents in this short video

Along with our forms, documents and checklists, we have developed a lot of time and money saving resources to help you Manage to Make Money with your rentals.  Come, visit and check us out at: www.ManageToMakeMoney.com

As always, thank you for reading!

Pat & Kris

, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Leave a comment