Five Ways Landlords Can Protect Their Property (and Save Money)

Fall is here--prime time for some seasonal upgrades to your property. These suggested fixes will protect your investment and save you money over the coming years.   1. Yearly Inspection of Furnace and Air Conditioner Autumn is the perfect time to make sure that the heater or furnace on your property is working as it should. An inspection now can save you costly emergency repairs later, so the investment is worthwhile. Unless you are a heating and air conditioning specialist, hire a ... Read More

How to Choose the Right Real Estate Insurance Package

Well-chosen property insurance packages provide an essential safeguard that landlords shouldn't take take for granted. Solutions offered by insurers can be tailor-made based on your specific needs, allowing you to obtain the best deal for your money. Choosing the wrong package compromises your ability to recover in the event of a loss due to inadequate coverage.   Use an insurance calculator to make sure you have sufficient coverage for your properties. The appraisal must take int ... Read More

5 Tips for Smart Tenant Screening

According to census data, almost 200,000 tenant evictions took place in 2009. This is an increase of 127 percent from the previous census survey. Meanwhile, the number of tenants paying more rent than they could afford (defined as 30 percent or more of their income) rose to a record 50 percent by 2010, according to a study from Harvard’s Joint Center for Housing Studies. A recent New York Times post, Evictions Soar in Hot Market, indicates that in many parts of the country, this trend h ... Read More

Legal Rules Every Landlord Should Know

When landlords set out to rent properties, it is important for them to be aware of the laws and regulations in place to protect both themselves and the tenants. Many states have modeled their statutory law around the Model Residential Landlord-Tenant Code or the Uniform Residential Landlord And Tenant Act (URLTA), both of which stipulate rules and regulations for legal landlord-tenant relationships. As a landlord, awareness of these laws will help you rent out your property in a hassle-free mann ... Read More

3 Secrets Pros Use to Reduce Tenant Headaches

Managing your own property isn't an easy job -- it involves maintaining your property, finding the right tenants, keeping them happy, and many other things. However, it is clearly worthwhile. In fact, real estate remains one of the smartest investments you can make. Fortunately, there are things that you can do to make managing your property easier and more lucrative. Here is a rundown of three property management secrets from professionals that you can use on your own rental property. &n ... Read More

Top Reasons to Invest Locally

Have you been thinking about purchasing out-of-state property? Investing in a hot, new out-of-state development can sound exciting and lucrative, but before you do so, consider the following advantages of buying real estate closer to your own home. You Know The Area You're likely to have a better grasp on the amenities of your own community. You've seen local neighborhoods grow and change; you know how the property values have varied, and what is likely to impact them. No matte ... Read More

A Quick Look at the Fair Housing Act

In the United States, we take it as a given that it's illegal for businesses to discriminate against certain groups of people. This understanding is supported by a long string of laws and court rulings, such as Title VIII of the Civil Rights Act, also known as the Fair Housing Act. This act protects tenants from unfair discrimination by landlords and real estate agents. Laws and interpretations can change swiftly, and many states and municipalities may have laws in addition to the Fair Ho ... Read More

Do You Really Need to Increase Your Tenant's Rent?

Any landlord will tell you that when all is said and done, the primary objective for investing in rental properties is to make money. In fact, we generally want to squeeze every last penny out of our properties, and that means increasing the rent from time to time. However, give careful consideration about how much to raise a tenant's rate. Also, if you have a stellar tenant, consider not raising that person's rent at all. Increasing the Rent Your rental rates should be in-line wit ... Read More

How to Make Sure Your Favorite Tenants Stay

Having to replace a good tenant can be very expensive. The final costs of replacing a tenant can easily exceed $4,000. Accordingly, it’s very important that you try to hold onto your favorite tenants for as long as possible. Offering competitive rental rates and keeping your property in good condition are obvious requirements in this effort, but consider these five suggestions for extra steps you can take to keep good tenants signed on. Offer a Longer Lease Renewal If you normally of ... Read More

Tips for Attracting New Tenants During the Holidays

The holiday season is full of cheer and merriment and best wishes for the coming New Year.  But it can also fill a landlord’s heart with worry about filling empty units.  In general, people don’t like to move between Thanksgiving and New Year’s, so getting a lease signed during the month of December is tricky.  Here are some tips for attracting tenants during the holiday season. Word of Mouth If your current tenants think of you as a responsible and respect ... Read More

5 Rental Incentives to Generate Interest During the Off-Season

Your off-season is a frustrating time if you have unoccupied properties. You don't want to deal with an empty rental for long, especially over the winter when you have to keep it heated. If you aren't getting much interest in your standard rental listings, consider adding incentives to set yourself apart from the competition and get prospective tenants through the door.   1. Lower Rent During Off-Season Do you want to keep existing tenants past their normal leases if they e ... Read More

5 Advantages of Investing in Out-of-Town Property

  If you’re looking to diversify your real estate investment portfolio, investing in property outside of your town or state can be a financially rewarding proposition due to a variety of reasons such as tax breaks or rental properties with a lucrative location that's appealing to renters. Here are five advantages of investing in properties away from home.   1. Getting An Early Foothold in Developing Market Some areas have a hot real estate market. If you’re ... Read More

Ways to Save on Taxes and Insurance as a Landlord

Renting out a property comes with plenty of associated costs ranging from property maintenance and repair to the taxes and insurance you're required to pay for as a landlord. However, you have ways to save on these costs and enjoy the additional money in your pocket. Taxes Many of the taxes you pay as a landlord are deductible. Discuss the details with a tax professional, but keep in mind these commonly missed deductions when you're ready to file your taxes. Interest payments ... Read More

Top Things to Look for when Buying Property to Rent

These days there are more people than ever looking to rent an apartment rather than buying. For the savvy real estate owner building a portfolio of places that can be rented easily is a no brainer as the return on investment is higher than some financial schemes. Knowing what makes a good rental home is vital to ensure it is quickly rented and can be filled if the tenant leaves. Here are some suggestions on what works in the land of rental real estate. Think Like a Tenant Many rental homes ... Read More

Real estate marketing through social media - How do you Measure Up?

Whether you’re a real estate agent or property manager, using social media outlets to generate leads for your business is a smart decision. Building your online presence will not only make it easier for people to find, but also generate buzz around the properties that are awaiting purchase or rental. Facebook and Twitter can be lifelines for your business. In today’s booming real estate market, they are essential tools that help to increase your client base and sustain existing clien ... Read More

Hosting an Open House During the Holidays

It can be difficult to get new tenants during the holiday season, as most people do not want to add moving to their to-do lists at such a busy time. They often take a break from looking at properties until after the new year. An open house is often poorly tended, but you can change that by getting into the spirit of the season with your plans. Make It Festive As you plan your open house, make it fun and festive with holiday decorations and snack foods. Have holiday music playing in the bac ... Read More

Generating Referrals from Existing Tenants During the Slow Seasons

Rental demand isn't consistent throughout the year, especially if you have properties in a college or tourist town. You don't want your properties to sit vacant for months at a time simply because it's slow. Between the lost rental income and issues with break-ins and other crime associated with empty property, it's not an ideal situation. One of the most effective options is utilizing your current tenant network to generate additional referrals for new properties you bring on bo ... Read More

Spread Holiday Cheer with Community Stewardship

Affiliating yourself with a charity is a great way to show current and prospective tenants that you are invested in the local community, and there’s no better time than during the holiday season. Not only does it help those in need and spread holiday cheer, but it also develops your network of contacts. Since charities are usually aware that you have a secondary motivation for participating with them, many of them have gotten really good at helping you receive a return on your investment w ... Read More

Finding Good Targets for Holiday Advertising

Seasonal factors are in play when rental activity slows down from November to January, but that can provide an opportunity when you’re trying to figure out how to maximize your holiday advertising. In fact, the slow market conditions can make it even easier for you because people looking for a new place during the holidays may be desperate to sign a lease and get their housing situation squared away. Here are two likely groups for you to target for holiday advertising. Students and Teac ... Read More

How to Create a Tenant Retention Plan

For landlords, having a sound tenant retention program makes strong business sense. Advertising, marketing, brokerage, vacancy loss, and building repairs are costs associated with tenant acquisition; these are avoidable if you can retain your existing tenants. The value of keeping tenants satisfied becomes apparent when the rental landscape is bleak and occupancy rates are low. There are some things that you can do to ensure that you retain your quality tenants.   Get to Know Your Ten ... Read More

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