Don’t Trust Your Property to Memory

Don’t Trust Your Property to Memory

by David Pickron

It’s a scenario we are all familiar with, the rental car inspection process prior to receiving the keys.  Think back to the last time you were asked to walk around the vehicle with your half sheet of paper with the car diagram on it, looking for any existing problems.  To avoid getting charged for damages that aren’t your fault, you dutifully circle the car, notating every scratch and ding.  Why does the rental agency  require this?  To protect their investment.  Period.  When it comes to your investment property, do you take similar steps to ensure that your property is delivered back to you in the same condition as when you rented it?  The average car rental is 3 days and it is sometimes hard to remember what was there at the time of possession.  Imagine how much more difficult it is to remember the condition of your much larger asset after a 3-year lease. Will you accurately remember every room, wall, faucet, light fixture, appliance, flooring and everything else?

Pictures and forms are great, but where do I store them so I can easily access them when my tenants decide to move out?  Truthfully, the whole process is a pain and most landlords drop the ball in their move in, move out inspections, ultimately costing them money at the end of each lease.  No one gets into business to lose money (at least not anyone that expects to last long as an investor).  It’s not a question of should we do move in, move out inspections, but rather how we should do them.

As a landlord, for years I paid for damages created by tenants because it was easier to pay the bill than it was to fight over who was at fault.  I realized that I had no leg to stand on because I had no real evidence.  When something causes me pain, I look for a way to get rid of the pain.  I became laser focused on creating a solution that would be both easy and effective.  The result… Introducing MI-MO, Rent Perfect’s Move-In, Move-Out process, found inside your Rent Perfect Portal next to our other innovative products like tenant invites, online lease creation and more.

Here’s how it works:  MI-MO starts with the new tenant receiving an invite through Rent Perfect to inspect the property.  They inspect each room and accept everything that is in good working order.  If something needs to be repaired, they take a picture of it with their phone and document the needed repair.  They  repeat the process throughout the home and after completion, you receive a notification to login to your Rent Perfect Portal and review their inspection.  You have the option to either note the damage or fix the problem.  Rent Perfect stores the inspection notes and accompanying pictures for the duration of your rental contract, no matter how long your tenant lives there.  During your inspection of the property at move out you have photographic evidence of the condition of the property at time of occupancy.  Find something wrong?  Take a picture and it will automatically upload into the Rent Perfect system.  You can easily compare the property condition and adjust the refunding of the security deposit based entirely on the difference in the property at move-in and move-out.

The whole goal is to prevent a situation where it is your word against the tenant.  MI-MO will allow you to be transparent and your tenants will love that.  Rent Perfect just took one more unnecessary fight away from the rental relationship game.  I guess we can thank the rental car industry for doing something right.

Editor’s note:  Members of National REIA can take advantage of special pricing from RentPerfect; the solution for rental property owners and managers for screening & managing tenants.

 

Add your reaction Share

Aging in [some other] Place

According to a new report from RentCafe, renters over 60 grew 43% over the last decade reflecting the lifestyle habits of America’s aging baby-boomers.   In fact, over 22% of our current population is aged 60 or more helping to push up the national median age from 36.7 in 2007 to 38.1 in 2017 – the highest it’s ever been!

“The overall aging of the population is not just the result of the economic hardship following the 2007 Great Recession, reflected in declining birth rates, but also the result of the Baby Boom cohort, America’s largest living adult generation, passing age 53 in 2017.”

 


Click here to read the full story on RentCafe.com.

 

Add your reaction Share

Investing in the Zone

According National REIA’s Charles Tassell, “Opportunity zones offer real estate investors strong incentives to invest in designated low-income census tracts…these zones could be the next thing.”  This observation and more are part of a recent article in the March issue of DS News where Tassell gives readers the ins & outs of these Opportunity Zones.

“National REIA members tend to improve neighborhoods one home at a time, bringing vacant and distressed housing back online and thereby improving the communities and tax rolls. In opportunity zone communities, investors and developers could all benefit through vibrancy or redevelopment partnered with development, incentivized by this federal program.”

Click here to read the in the DS News March 2019 issue.

Click here to download a PDF of the article only (pages 66-69).

 

Add your reaction Share

HUD Drastically Cutting Notice For Inspections Of Public Housing & Privately Owned Apartment Buildings

The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) recently announced it was dramatically reducing the advance notice it provides to public housing authorities (PHAs) and private owners of HUD-subsidized apartment developments before their housing is inspected to ensure it is decent, safe and healthy. HUD’s new standard provides PHAs and private owners of HUD-assisted housing 14 calendar days’ notice before an inspection, a dramatic reduction from the current notice which can frequently extend up to four months.  The notice was part of a wholesale reexamination of REAC’s inspection process that Secretary Carson launched shortly after taking office. HUD will be consulting with PHAs and property owners over the next several months to discuss other improvements to REAC’s process.

“It’s become painfully clear to us that too many public housing authorities and private landlords whom we contract with were using the weeks before their inspection to make quick fixes, essentially gaming the system,” said HUD Secretary Ben Carson. “The action we take today is part of a broader review of our inspections so we can be true to the promise of providing housing that’s decent, safe and healthy to the millions of families we serve.”

Click here to read the full release.

 

Add your reaction Share

Types of Real Estate

The folks over at Fortunebuilders say there are several types of investment properties investors should become familiar with, including residential and commercial. Today’s infographic helps identify the various types in order to help investors determine what’s best for them.  Happy Friday!!!

 

Add your reaction Share

Suburbs with the Biggest Boom in Renters

Which suburbs have seen the largest boom in renters?  A recent report at RENTcafe analyzed data from Yardi and the U.S. Census Bureau to show which suburbs have led the way in the growth of rentals.  They looked into renter population changes between 2011 and 2016 to uncover the suburbs that peaked the most and analyzed the changes in rental prices.  From their research, they determined that the suburbs with a high influx of renters have also seen rents rise at a faster than the average pace.  Go figure…

“During the past few years, there has been a notable increased interest in suburban renting, whether caused by downsizing retirees, relocation or immigration. But some suburbs have led the way, seeing rapid development and spectacular gains in renter population.”

RENTcafe’s interactive table can be sorted five different ways to look at the data.

Click here to read the full story at RENTCafe.com.

Add your reaction Share

House Flippers Facing New Challenges

We have had several recent posts about the economic condition of the home flipping market. With that in mind, a recent post on BizWomen says that in several housing markets there is a shortage of distressed and run-down properties that is making it harder for house flippers to find profits.  They point out that profits from flipping have shrunk to 38% from 42% over purchase prices, however they add that they’re actually lower when you factor in the renovation and remodeling costs.  And, as always, we have to mention that one elusive generational cohort’s effect on the market:

“Realtor.com, while reporting mixed numbers on the state of home flipping in 2018, still finds that Millennials are an attractive market for house flippers…..Millennials ‘want to move into a home that requires minimal work,’ Charles Tassell, chief operating officer at National Real Estate Investors Association, told Realtor.com.”

Click here to read the full story at bizwomen.

 

Add your reaction Share

Remodeling Magazine’s 2019 Cost vs Value Report

Remodeling Magazine recently released their 32nd annual Cost vs. Value Reportcomparing remodeling projects & upgrades with the value they retain when the property is sold in 136 U.S. housing markets.  It’s all about the ROI…

“While the overall changes since last year are modest, the 2019 Cost vs. Value report reflects the robust market that the remodeling industry has enjoyed over the past year. All projects covered in the report show an increase in value over the previous year…”

Click here to read the full report at Remodeling.com.

Add your reaction Share

State of Housing Demand is Suddenly Strong Again

Realty Check’s Diana Olick says that while demand is ticking up for housing, thanks to lower interest rates, there are just too few entry-level homes for sale.  She points out that the homes Homebuilders are building are largely in the move-up and luxury sectors, not entry level.   Indeed….

“Affordability is still an obstacle…The trouble is that while there are more houses coming on the market, and prices are easing slightly, there are still not enough affordable homes for sale.  Supply is increasing largely because homes are sitting on the market longer.”

 

Click here to watch State of the Housing Market on CNBC.

 

Add your reaction Share

Top Ten Skyrocketing Metros

Existing home sales might be dropping overall but that doesn’t mean it’s happening everywhere. Realtor.com recently took a look at the nation’s largest 200 markets and identified the top 10 that were skyrocketing.  They say that these strongest housing markets have “so far have eluded the shifting tides, with double-digit annual price growth.”  Be sure to check out the story as it goes into particular detail about each city and why it made their top ten list.

“Even with the deceleration in home price increases … we are still seeing strong home buying in smaller metros that have good affordability and solid job growth,” says Frank Nothaft, the chief economist at Corelogic, a real estate data firm.

The top 10 skyrocketing housing markets are:

  1. Chico, CA
  2. Birmingham, AL
  3. Spokane, WA
  4. Greensboro, NC
  5. Columbia, SC
  6. South Bend, IN
  7. Trenton, NJ
  8. Reading, PA
  9. Killeen, TX
  10. Milwaukee, WI

Click here to read the full story on Realtor.com

Add your reaction Share