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Phoenix Property Management

What to Expect in the Arizona Housing Market

As an investor or homeowner, it is imperative to know what to expect from the Arizona housing market for the rest of 2021 to best prepare and increase your return on investment.

There has been a lot of changes to life in the last year. The pandemic affected a lot of jobs and incomes. It affected where and how we worked. It also affected our schools, hospitals, and local dining and shopping places. COVID changed us.

And it has greatly changed the Arizona housing market.

The question is – what should expect for the rest of 2021? With eviction bans, increases in home sales, and a slow in new home builds, what does this mean for landlords and investors?

Let’s take a look at the Arizona housing market from a few different angles.

The Impact of Pre-Foreclosures

As we said, many people have lost their jobs or have suffered financially over the last year. This has sent a surge of homes into pre-foreclosure status. This is the time period that begins with the mortgager sends out a default notice. Payments have been missed, a foreclosure appears to be on the horizon, but no legal paperwork has been filed yet – and no writ has been issued.

No homeowner wants to lose their home to foreclosure, but sometimes the best option is to sell.

So, what does this mean for investors? Typically, pre-foreclosure homes are sold below the market value. They want to get out from under the house so they drop the price. Investors who swoop in and buy up these houses often end up with a decent property that has the potential to be turned into something great. A little renovation and may have just scored something incredible.

Though, investing in pre-foreclosures does not come without risk. There could be hefty repair issues within the property that you may or may not know about until after the closing. Plus, with the law allowing sellers the right to rescind, there is always that chance a transaction will be canceled no matter how good it looks.

Regardless, more and more investors seem to be taking the leap and jumping on these cheap properties.

Home Sales are on the Rise

Home sales are on the rise and the competition for them is on fire. Many are saying it is thanks to millennials who took advantage of super-low mortgage rates during the pandemic. And it is existing homes they were after.

Many industries slowed down during the pandemic – including the construction of new homes. This has pushed the influx of buyers to focus on the available inventory: existing homes. With new homeowners and investors seeking the same thing, there has been a lot of fighting to be the one in the buyer’s seat.

All this demand is bringing a slight increase in sale prices, but it is not likely to lead to any serious market crashes down the road. Not to mention that as more construction starts building back up again, the supply with be greater.

Mortgages are Hard to Come By

Unless you’ve got a great credit score and a chunk of money for a down payment (at least 20%), you may not find it easy to get a mortgage. Lenders are dealing with a lot of open mortgages and even more missed payments. And with all the uncertainty that comes with the economy right now, they don’t know when payments are going to start coming in – if at all. As a result, incredibly strict lending standards have been put into place.

The good news is that thanks to these stricter lending guidelines, there are less likely to be any issues with the Arizona housing market in the future like we saw 15 or so years ago.

What do you do if you are an investor? Well, if you are an investor, you may want to consider other types of funding in order to purchase your properties.

The Arizona Housing Market is Doing Better Than You Think

The rental market took a hard hit over the last year with many landlords scrambling to make mortgage payments on their rental properties – especially with many renters unable to afford rent. Thanks to government assistance, those who owed back rent were able to get caught or reduce the money owed, at least.

The current situation has turned many potential investors away from rental properties and it has brought great concern among those who are already there. But what is to come? Will the rental market stay stagnant, or will there be a blossoming in the near future?

Most of those who spend their time analyzing the market feel that rents will recover, especially as life returns to normal thanks to herd immunity. Something to keep an eye on are those properties in more rural areas. With more and more people working from home, convenient commutes are no longer a top priority.

The important thing to remember is that not everyone is going to purchase a home. There will always be renters. Now more than ever, though, you will want to make sure you have a well-established tenant screening reporting process. While it may not do much to counteract unforeseen issues like the global pandemic, we have learned a lot about what could go wrong – and what to look for.

Property managers have been working hard throughout this last year learning ways to keep rental vacancy rates low and rent payments coming in despite everything. If you do end up investing in a new rental property, you may want to let the professionals handle it.

At Real Property Management Evolve, we have a deep understanding of the local Arizona housing market. We recognize that rental rates don’t seem to be improving just yet, but they will.

Final Thought

The pandemic is slowly lifting and everything is starting to show signs of life again. The Arizona housing market has changed quite a bit since this time last year – in ways we never could have imagined. But as our economy begins to really open up and improve, home sales continue to be up, rental rates stagnant – change is sure to come that will even everything back out soon enough.

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Property Management Tips

10 Things Local Property Management Does a Nationwide Realtor Can’t

When choosing a management company for your rental, you with have the option of choosing a local property management company, or a large nationwide realtor. Which is best for you? Here are 10 things a local manager can do that a large nationwide chain cannot.

First things first, bigger is not always better. Read that again – bigger is not always better. All too often, we find ourselves getting excited over the latest release or idea of a major corporation and tend to overlook the little guy. Truth is, that little guy is hungry. He is working to make something big. He has the drive to work hard for his success. And his results show it.

There is no hiding the fact that Zillow is trying to enter the field of property management with its new Zillow Rent Manager program. Truth is, Zillow has been successful at listing properties for sale around the country – but there are some things that major players in the game just can’t do as well as the little guy.

In fact, here are 10 things that local property management will do that a nationwide realtor can’t.

1. Local Property Managers Know Their Market Personally

Local property management companies often have extensive knowledge of their home area. They know the trends and the communities which give them the best guidance for setting rental rates and marketing to the right future tenants.

Nationwide realtors may be well-versed in the process from a larger scale, they aren’t going to have an in-depth knowledge of an area like the locals do.

2. Local Managers Bring a Human Connection

Human connection is important. Would you rent your property without ever talking to a tenant? Nationwide realtors will not be there to interview potential tenants.

You can learn a lot about someone just by having a conversation face-to-face. When it comes to screening tenants, sometimes engaging can help you make your decision. Of course, should you choose to rent your property to someone, you want them to feel like they have a good understanding of who they are renting from, as well.

It doesn’t matter how technologically advanced we get in this world; human connection is vital.

3. Local Property Management Thoroughly Screens Applicants

Nationwide realtors, like Zillow, have a lot of fancy software programs that can do some savvy things – including tenant screening. But do you know what a local property manager can do?

Local property management companies have access to major tenant screening platforms. Instead of relying solely upon the computer-based outcome, they also have an expertly trained eye to look for scams and deceit. You will find that these managers are better equipped with experience and technology to find high-quality tenants for your property.

4. Local Property Managers Handle Rent Collection – Especially from Renters Who Don’t Pay

When your renters aren’t paying their rent, will a nationwide realtor make phone calls or knock on the door of your rental property? Not at all. This would be left up to you to handle. As a landlord looking for help, you won’t find it.

Local property managers have a detailed process down for rent collection and dealing with renters who are late or not paying at all. And, as the landlord, you won’t have to worry about it.

5. Local Managers Will Follow Through with the Eviction Process When Necessary

When those renters reach a point when they are facing eviction, local property managers will follow through with the eviction process and see it through all the necessary legal actions without you having to lift a finger.

Eviction services are not something that is generally handled by nationwide realtors.

6. Local Property Management Know the Laws of their State and Community

When you are dealing with rental properties and housing, there are many laws that you have to abide by, such as Federal Fair Housing laws as well as state and local landlord-tenant laws and the like. Because of what could happen if you don’t, you always want to make sure you are following the law 100% of the time.

Local property management is well-versed in federal, state, and local laws. You can rest easy knowing that you won’t find yourself in any legal hot water. And, if you ever have any questions, you always have a go-to source for information.

7. Local Property Managers Offer Landlords Clear, Affordable Rates

Nationwide realtors often have hidden fees or unclear terms. With a local property manager, such as Real Property Management Evolve, the fees are very transparent. You always know what you are to pay and the services you are paying for.

8. Local Managers Handle Showings and Walk-Throughs

Zillow Property Management is not going to show up at your rental property and handle your showings or walk-throughs. It just doesn’t work that way with nationwide realtors. If you don’t mind doing them yourself, then that’s fine. But, if you are looking for a manager to handle your rental property – and everything that comes with it – that means handling showings, walk-throughs, and inspections.

This is where a local property manager comes in.

9. Local Management Companies Handle Repairs and Routine Maintenance

Your rental property is sure to need routine maintenance and even emergency repairs. Getting these things taken care of in a timely manner can help in tenant retention – and lower vacancy rates. Local property managers have trusted relationships with local vendors and service techs in the area to handle any need that arises in an efficient, proper manner.

The best property managers in Phoenix often get significant discounts with maintenance vendors based on the relationships built over time. This simply doesn’t exist as an opportunity with nationwide property management companies.

10. Local Property Managers Don’t Require the Landlord to Do Anything

Nationwide realtors may offer a service for landlords, but they don’t take over the job of a landlord. If you are looking for someone to thoroughly manage your properties so you can focus on other things, then you need a local property manager.

You won’t have to do anything because your property manager will handle everything from marketing the property to tenant screening, leasing, rent collection, and so much more.

Conclusion

It is easy to get swayed by big companies – with the thought that they are so big because they do things better. At Real Property Management Evolve, we know that Zillow is a great platform, but we also know that for detailed service and effective property management, you need a local property management company. Experience the difference. Give our team a call today!

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Property Management Tips

9 Ways to Reduce Your Rental Property Vacancy Rate

As a homeowner or investor, your rental property vacancy rate directly impacts your ROI. These 9 tips can help you reduce property vacancy, thus increasing your return.

Your rental property vacancy rate is something you need to keep an eye on if you want to have a healthy ROI. After all, vacancies mean no rent collection, which, in turn, means a reduced profit. The more this happens, the harder it can impact your business.  

As a landlord, you know that you either need to find new tenants as soon as possible or keep the ones you have. Let’s take a look at 9 ways to make this happen and reduce your rental property vacancy rate.

1. Understand Your Market

Having a good idea of your market is essential. As renters begin searching for new homes, they are becoming well-versed in the rental rates in the area. You should be, too. Your property should be listed at a comparable rate as others in the area. If it is priced too high, it will turn potential tenants away. If it is priced too low, it will make people wonder what is wrong with the place – so don’t appear desperate.

2. Market Your Property Properly

As you market your property, you want to do so in a way that gets it in front of the right people. Get your property seen – and then spark interest by showing how valuable the property is. Focus on the features, the amenities, the surrounding community, and more.

3. Have a Thorough Tenant Screening Process

Good, high-quality tenants are gems. They pay rent on time, treat the rental property with care, and usually choose to renew their lease. These individuals don’t seem to be very transient. Investing in a thorough tenant screening process means you have a better chance of getting these great tenants.

Not only do quality tenants reduce your risk of missed rental payments, but they also reduce your risk of having to find new tenants after the lease is up.

Your tenant screening process needs to look intricately at important things like:

It’s important to know what to look for in your tenant screening report. Perfect your tenant screening process, and you will find high-quality tenants which, in turn, will reduce your property vacancy rate.

4. Make Repairs Promptly

If you want good tenants, then your tenants need a good landlord. When something breaks or an issue arises, your tenants need to feel like they can count on you to promptly make repairs. They need to feel confident that if the refrigerator stops cooling the day before Thanksgiving, that they can call you, and you will take care of it.

Not many tenants have that confidence in their landlord. When they find it, they want to keep it. 

5. Offer Incentives or Move-In Bonus

Sometimes offering a little can be the difference between a vacancy and no vacancy. For instance, if you have prospective tenants who are torn between your property and one on the next block, offering a move-in bonus or another incentive could be all that is needed to help them make their decision.

If you make them feel like they are getting a deal, they may be more likely to sign the lease.

Just for the record, we are not talking about giving up huge amounts of money here. You can offer 10% off the first month’s rent, a free tv after lease signing, or even a gift card to a local dining favorite. It is all about making them feel good.

6. Suggest an Extended Lease Term

The standard lease is for one year, but it is not unheard of for tenants to sign a two-year lease or one even longer. There are both pros and cons with this type of offer – and all should be weighed and considered, such as:

  • An extended lease avoids the possibility of a higher vacancy rate for a while.
  • You may find that the new tenants with the three-year lease are not the most ideal after all.

Why would this work?

To make this an easier decision, consider offering an extended lease to a tenant you already have. If you have a quality tenant whose lease is almost up and they want to renew, why not offer an extended lease? You know how they are as a tenant, and it would keep you from having to worry about your vacancy rate for a couple of years.

7. Develop a Healthy Rapport With Your Tenants

You don’t need to go and have coffee with your tenants every Saturday but keeping the lines of communication open is a good thing. When you develop a healthy relationship with your tenants, you make it comfortable for them to contact you when there is a need or issue with the property or have a personal struggle that affects their ability to pay rent.

If you make reaching out to you a welcoming experience rather than a dreaded one, you may keep your tenants longer.

8. Begin Marketing Before the Vacancy Happens

You don’t want your property to stay vacant too long. When a tenant gives notice that they won’t be renewing their lease, it is time to start marketing your property. You may have to get creative to show the place, and you will need to allow time in between to get it move-in ready, but this may save you from having to wait another 30 days or more to rent out the unit.

9. Hire a Property Manager

Finally, hiring a property manager is one of the best ways to reduce your rental property vacancy rate. See, property management companies have everything organized and streamlined, so there is minimal downtime between tenants. Perhaps the best part is that you do not have to worry about doing any of it because it will all be handled for you.

At Real Property Management Evolve, our team of professionals work to keep your rental homes filled with high-quality tenants at every step of the way. From top-notch tenant screening to fast repair response times and tried-and-true marketing practices, we take all the steps necessary to ensure that you reduce your rental property vacancy rate and increase your profits.

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Property Management Tips

11 Questions to Ask A Property Manager Before Hiring

These 11 questions to ask a property manager before you hire them will help to ensure that you choose the best possible company for your property’s needs.

As a rental property homeowner or investor, you want to protect your property. You handle everything necessary to ensure that your rentals are in top shape and that your vacancy rate is low. All this hard work, though, can make you wish for some help.

It could be that you are overwhelmed with the stress that comes with managing rental properties. Maybe it is because you would like to focus solely on investing. Or perhaps it is something else entirely.

Whatever brings you to the place of hiring a company for your rental properties, there are 11 questions to ask a property manager before you sign any agreements.

1. Can I Verify Your License? 

One of the most important questions to ask a property manager is to verify their license. Nearly all states in the U.S., including the state of Arizona, require property managers to have a license through the state in which they do business. Arizona law states that to operate as a property manager, a real estate broker’s license is required.

Before you go any further in asking questions – and surely before signing a contract – be sure to verify the property manager’s license and confirm that it is active and in good standing with the state.

2. How Long Have You Been in the Area? 

If it is a Phoenix property manager you are looking for, then you want to find out how long they have been in the area – both in business and personally. You are looking for someone very familiar with the entire area. Not to mention that those with ties to the community usually have a solid network of support.

3. What Services Do You Offer? 

There is a lot to do when it comes to managing properties. Some property managers offer full service; others may charge an additional fee for certain services. Does the company perform thorough tenant screening? Property management marketing? Get to know what is included in their services and what all they can take off of your plate for you.

4. How Much are Your Property Management Fees? 

Every property manager is going to charge a fee for handling your property. Though keep in mind that this could vary based on the services you want them to do. Most companies will charge you a fee based on the amount of rent that is charged for the properties.

Be sure to discuss any additional fees that may be charged, whether for maintenance, legal issues, tenant screening, and more.

Trust your gut. If a property manager is telling you something that sounds too good, there is likely to be a catch down the road. Most property managers hide fees inside of their management agreements so always make sure to get a copy of the agreement, and read it, before signing. At RPM Evolve we believe in transparency – you won’t find any hidden fees in our contracts!

5. How Do You Collect Rent? 

When seeking a property manager, you need someone who invests in technology to streamline their management processes – and this includes collecting rent. Online payment options are what you are looking for.

6. How are Requests for Service Repairs Addressed? 

Other important questions to ask a property manager before hiring include discussing property maintenance. You want to make sure that your rental property is cared for. When a repair is needed, you need to feel confident that these repairs will be addressed promptly. After all, the longer a minor repair goes untouched, the more major the repair becomes – and the more costly for you.

Discuss how the repairs are addressed, if there are scheduled property inspections, who handles the repair payment, if you have a say in final decisions, and so on. The process should be effective and clear so that everyone is on the same page.

7. Do You Send Reports? Will I have Access to a Portal? 

With technology the way it is today, you should be able to have access to info about your properties anytime, day or night. Ask to look at the reports and to see what information you will have access to within their system.

Keeping track of your properties this way will give you a good idea of how well you are or are not doing with your rentals.

8. What is Your Vacancy Rate? 

The vacancy rate will give you an idea of how many properties are sitting vacant at any given time. You want this rate to be small. Too high of a vacancy rate will tell you that either they don’t have much success marketing the property or finding tenants. Or that they have a high turnover rate – which could signal that their tenant screening process may not be too effective.

Another important question concerning the vacancy rate is to find out whether the property manager collects management fees on vacant units. This is not a typical practice. Not receiving fees from you should push the team to work harder to fill the vacancy. Otherwise, they are receiving money, and you are not – and that isn’t making you a priority.

9. How Many Rental Properties Are You Managing? 

While it may be impressive to hear that a company has a roster of 1,500 properties they manage, it may mean you are just another client. Then again, it could mean they are doing something right. If personal service is what you are looking for, smaller local property management companies may be more beneficial.

10. What Properties Do You Primarily Manage? 

You are looking for a property manager that is familiar with the types of rentals you own. For instance, you don’t want to take your multi-unit apartment building to a management team that is well-versed in handling single-family homes. Sometimes, their portfolio may include multiple types of properties which proves they are successful in both types of management. You want to ensure that your property manager has your best interest in mind, and that includes proven success with your type of property.

11. Do You Have Any References? 

A property manager should have clients or a network of business associates that are willing to vouch for their work. If they don’t, that’s a sure sign to run.

As you begin your quest for a property management firm, look for the best. You want someone who is going to be transparent in their services and costs while providing you with open communication. And you want a company that has perfected its management process so that it is streamlined and efficient. These 11 questions to ask a property manager before hiring will give you bountiful insight into the type of company that they are.

Real Property Management Evolve is the top property management team in the Phoenix area that can give you all of these and more. With a customer-focused management process, your property is our priority.

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Landlord Property Management Tips

Landlord Responsibilities: 9 Things You Need to Know As A Homeowner

There are many landlord responsibilities to be aware of when deciding to rent out rental properties – here is what you should know. 

Many people choose to invest in a rental property and become landlords with the idea of earning income without actually having to work. So you buy a rental property, let tenants move in, and sit back collecting rent. Simple, right? Wrong.

While the idea sounds fantastic, the actuality of it is not. The truth is that there are a handful of landlord responsibilities – and they take on a lot of work. It does not take much time for those new to the industry to feel overwhelmed and stressed.

Understanding Your Landlord Responsibilities

If you are considering investing in a rental property or you are currently a landlord who is feeling the struggle, putting a few practices in place can help you tremendously. When it comes to landlord responsibilities, here are nine things you should know.

1. Perfect the Art of Tenant Screening 

Before new tenants move into your rental property, they need to be properly screened. You are looking for high-quality tenants with steady employment, a positive rental history, and a good credit score. Of course, the specifics of what you require will vary on your own preferences or the tenant’s personal situation. The idea is to thoroughly screen your tenants to weed through those that may cause problems or not be able to afford the rent. Watching out for scammers is essential, too.

Having a screening process in place helps reduce risk and brings you peace of mind.

2. Maintain Open Communication with Your Tenants

Communication is key when it comes to your landlord-tenant relationship. They need to know that they can count on you to respond when they reach out – and you need to know the same. You must be available for your tenants and share your preferred method of communication. Knowing they can count on you increases the chance that they will properly care for your property.

3. Address Repair Requests ASAP

As a landlord, you do not want to hear that a repair is needed at one of your properties. It is just one more thing you have to take care of. However, you must address these repair requests as soon as possible. Not only does it mean they will call you next time something else breaks, but it also keeps you from facing major repair bills.

Minor repairs, such as a leaky faucet, can be an easy fix. However, if left alone, this small plumbing issue could turn into a major, more expensive repair down the road. Not to mention, this lack of action may be disheartening to the tenants – who may not call you the next time a repair is needed – which can cost you big time. 

4. Keep Yourself Organized

With so many responsibilities, landlords need to be organized. This is even more important if you have multiple properties. Tenant applications, signed lease agreements, repair orders, move-in / move-out reports, rent payments and receipt, and so on all need to be maintained and organized for each tenant at each property.

It may be overwhelming at first, but finding a system of organization will help ease the burden a bit.

5. Make Sure Your Lease is Legal, Effective, and Thorough

Many new landlords jump online and print off a generic lease agreement. If you want to protect yourself and your rental property, you want to make sure you have a well-written, thorough, and legal lease. Consider speaking to an attorney or a professional within the field who can guide you with this process.

Your lease is a contractual agreement between you and the person(s) living in your rental – and it is there to protect you.

6. Be Proactive with Property Maintenance

Maintaining your properties regularly can help reduce the need for major repairs. And it can help you stay focused without having to worry about additional issues arising. Have a set schedule throughout the year when preventative and/or routine inspections is to be performed.

7. Stay on Top of Market Trends

You are a landlord, but you are also an investor. Therefore, you need to stay on top of market trends to ensure that your property is set at the right rental amount to reduce vacancy while also keeping you from selling yourself short.

8. Have a Clear Understanding of Applicable Laws 

There are laws that landlords are to know and have a clear understanding of, such as fair housing laws and landlord-tenant laws. Unless you want to find yourself in hot water, do your due diligence and know the law as it applies to you at the federal, state, and local levels. This also includes understanding eviction laws, as well as when and how to use them.

9. Be Respectful and Courteous

Most importantly, tenants want a landlord who is respectful and courteous. They are renting a property from you, but they do not need to be made to feel less than you. Speak kindly. In addition, respect your tenant’s right to privacy while residing in your property.

How a Property Manager Can Help

Renting properties is a lot of work with many landlord responsibilities. Even the most well-seasoned landlords can get overwhelmed with the stress that owning rental property brings.

The best solution? Hiring a property manager. After attempting to handle everything independently for a while, many landlords decide that hiring a property manager can bring a sense of relief.

A property management team professionally handles rental properties, which means they have everything down to a science. Thorough tenant screening, repairs and routine maintenance, rent collection, an effective lease agreement, and more follow and tried-and-true process to gain and keep high-quality tenants – while keeping landlords happy and free.

At Real Property Management Evolve, we are the best property management team in the greater Phoenix area. We make it our job to know the laws, the current market and strive to reach nothing but the best for your rental properties.

If you are a landlord who is new to the arena or find yourself feeling overwhelmed from all of your landlord responsibilities, a property manager can help. It is what we do.

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Homeowners

8 Ways to Improve Your Rental Property ROI

As a property owner, you want to ensure that you receive the highest returns possible. Here are 8 ways to improve your rental property ROI.

Your rental property is an investment. You did your research and bought the property intending to earn money. After all, it is no secret that owning rental property is a great way to earn passive income. With the average return on investment falling between 6% and 10% per annum, it is a great investment opportunity. 

To calculate your current rate of return, you will divide your net profit by your incurred costs. The formula will look something like this: 

 

ROI = Investment Gain – Cost of Investment
                            Cost of Investment

 

If you are not satisfied with your calculation and would like to make your rental property ROI more appealing, you can. That is one of the perks of rental property investment – you can take steps to increase your ROI and earn higher returns. This involves making the rental property more enticing, offering additional services or conveniences, and making wise decisions. Here are eight ways you can improve your rental property ROI.

1. Always Evaluate Rental Rates 

The market is constantly changing, so it is important to keep tabs on it, always evaluating current rental rates. Make sure you are not shorting yourself – keep your rental rates within the market average. Don’t make the mistake of going too high outside the margin, or you will likely have a high turnover rate resulting in vacancy and even a damaged ROI.

2. Advertise a Home Office

Today, more people are working from home than ever before. If your rental has a small bedroom, why not refer to it as a home office? It will make your property seem more appealing – and more beneficial to the renters’ needs. Help the potential tenant see the value (a home office) in that tiny bedroom or extra space. 

3. Go Green

As a society, we are becoming more and more aware that our earth is the only one we will ever get. Taking steps to go green is two-fold. Not only does it show that you are a landlord who cares, but it also gives future renters the ability to save money. 

Going green doesn’t mean engaging in huge renovations. Rather, replace your bulbs with LED light bulbs, use only energy-efficient appliances, and consider investing in plumbing fixtures that minimize water usage.

Another way to increase rental property ROI while maintaining energy efficiency is to include solar in your property. Say you are a landlord that includes electric costs in your rent price, which allows you to increase rent by $200 per month, but most of the year there is no electric bill for your tenant. It allows you as the homeowner to increase your recurring revenue.

These small investments can win over new tenants big time – thus helping your increase your rental property ROI.

4. New Flooring, Fresh Paint, and New Hardware

Tenants want their home to look good, even if it is a rental. Having worn flooring or stained carpet is not going to spark interest at all. If you add new flooring that will look good and last a long time, you will increase its marketability. 

Just like new flooring, a fresh coat of paint can make a huge difference, too. It can make some of the oldest places look brand new. Adding small upgrades, like replacing knobs and pulls on cabinets in the kitchen and the bathroom, can give the space a makeover. 

These are relatively cheap ways to freshen up the rental, bring more money into your pocket, and, in turn, up your rental property ROI. 

5. Vamp Up Your Tenant Screening

You want high-quality tenants that you can keep long-term. Having to put out money to clean and repair the place every year or ending up with tenants who cause damage or do not pay can really do some damage to your rate of return. 

Put time and effort into developing a thorough and effective tenant screening so that you get the prime tenants every time. 

6. Landscaping

Pulling up to a rental that has curb appeal is already going to be more marketable than one that does not. Make it look good. Then, if you would like, add a landscaping service to your rent so that you can charge a bit more. Knowing their rental home will look good without effort on their part is always a win-win for a tenant. 

The extra money the landscaped yard will bring in throughout the year can increase your ROI.

7. Include Home Warranties

Home warranties are a great way to improve ROI as they can cover large replacement costs like air conditioning and water heaters. As a landlord, it is up to you to ensure these major appliances work well, and when they need repair, well that falls on you too. With a warranty, appliance breakdowns will be met swiftly, keeping your tenants happy, while allowing you to increase your ROI.

8. Hire a Property Manager 

One of the best decisions you can make when it comes to increasing your rate of return is to hire a property manager. They do more than just manage your property – they work to nurture your investment and increase your rental property ROI.

See, as a regular part of their process, they handle repairs, landscaping, charge pet fees, perform thorough tenant screening to gain the best tenants, offer innovative and automated solutions, and so much more.

At Real Property Management Evolve, we are Phoenix’s best of the best when it comes to caring for your property. We know that you are an investor and that your rental property is a means of income. That is why we do everything we can to ensure that you maximize those profits.   

Do not risk losing money while trying to figure out how to gain money. Instead, leave it to the professionals – and hire a property manager.

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Uncategorized

Using the BRRRR Method to Diversify Your Rental Property Portfolio

The BRRRR method is a proven strategy to help you diversify your rental property portfolio within the Phoenix area; here’s what you should know.

As an investor in rental properties – whether you have one or an entire portfolio – you know how important it is to finds strategies and methods that work well for you. If you stood in a room of 100 investors, there is a good chance that each individual would have a different strategy or method when it comes to finding the best properties and the soundest investments.

The critical thing to remember is that the goal of one investor may differ from another. And, truth be told, what one may think is a great strategy may be flawed.

If you truly want to diversify your rental property portfolio with an established investment strategy that has been proven to work, then you need to consider the BRRRR method.

 

The BRRRR Method: An Overview

Investing in rental property means that you need to find something valuable and create a lot of cash flow. After all, that is the end goal here, right? Thinking of traditional investments, most rental properties are purchased using financing. You apply for a loan through your bank, give a down payment (often at least 20%), fix up the property, and rent it out. It works, yes. But is it efficient? Not so much.

Using the BRRRR method, you cut out the financing and down payment. There is no need to waste time-saving up money on the side so you can make things look good for the bank. Instead, you find yourself moving the process quickly, rehabbing, renting, and refinancing so you can do it all again. It is, honestly, one of the best ways to keep a well-stocked, diversified portfolio – while maintaining a healthy cash flow.

The acronym BRRRR, stands for Buy, Rehab, Rent, Refinance, Repeat. Let’s take a look at each one of these steps.

 

Buy

You want to buy property as an investment because you are looking to make money. Before you can even think of buying, though, you have to find the property that works for you – meaning type, location, price range, and so on. Once you find what you are looking for, you could look to traditional bank financing, but you must know it is not your only choice.

Consider looking at other options for buying your new rental property:

  • Cash: Not everyone has a stack of cash in the bank, but if you do, you may want to consider moving forward with a cash investment in the rental property.
  • Private funding: If you know someone who wants to financially back your purchase or you have a friend or family who can loan you the money, this could be an option for you.
  • A home equity loan: Borrow against a property you already have.
  • Hard money loan: For those who don’t have the best credit or financial history but still want to diversify your portfolio in hopes of turning your financial situation around, hard money loans using tangible collateral could be an option.
  • Cash-out refinance: Again, if you currently own a property, you can always refinance and use the cash to put it towards your new investment.

As we stated, there are many different options for buying new rental properties, so you can find what works for you.

 

Rehab

The idea behind the BRRRR method of property investment is to look for a promising rental that needs some work – and then purchase it below market value. This allows you to go forward and renovate it and, in turn, increase its value.

Rehabs will vary in cost but can be upwards of $40,000.00 on average. You may encounter simple renovations, such as a leak, new carpet, or new coats of paint. Or you may find yourself having to do some significant renovations with the roof, appliances, remodeling of the kitchen or bathroom, and so on. This is when costs can increase significantly.

Remember that you do not always have to do major repairs to see a great increase in value. Sometimes, just small changes, such as bringing curb appeal to the property, can increase its value to your portfolio.

 

Rent

If you want a sound investment, you cannot skimp when it comes to finding tenants. You need to rent your property to suitable tenants so that they not only care for your property but pay monthly rent regularly and on time.

The tenant screening process requires a bit of time and skill. Sometimes leaving this to the experts may prove to be a wise choice. Property managers have a deep understanding of the local market and know the proper way to screen tenants. This means they also know how to find high-quality tenants while avoiding scammers.

Think about it this way – you are investing in a rental to gain quality tenants – and keep them happy – so you can maintain an income from this property. You need to place value in the entire process – and a property manager can help. 

 

Refinance

The next step in the BRRRR method is to refinance the rental property. Timing is crucial with this step as you want to wait approximately 6 to 12 months after you gain renters before you reach out to the lender. Be sure you have a clear understanding of your guidelines – and have a backup plan – before you rely too heavily on the cash from this refinance. 

 

Repeat

If you are like most investors, you are always looking for the next property. With the money you receive from the refinance we just talked about above, you can purchase your next property – and repeat the whole process.

That’s how you diversify that rental portfolio of yours!

Having professionals by your side always makes the process run a bit more smoothly. While you network with lenders, real estate agents, and other investors, don’t forget to find a property management team, too.

At Real Property Management Evolve, our seasoned team works to keep the Rent portion of the BRRRR method under control for all of your rental properties. That’s what makes us the best property management company in the greater Phoenix area.

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Landlord Tips

The Importance of Rental Property Inspections for Homeowners

As a homeowner, rental property inspections are an important aspect of renting out your home to tenants; here is why.

To keep your rental property healthy, you must perform regular inspections. Think about this: most dentists recommend a cleaning and dental exam every 6-months. This not only gets you to stay on top of your brushing, flossing, and other routine care, but it allows your dentist to make sure your teeth are healthy. Should a small cavity appear, it can be addressed quickly and painlessly. Otherwise, that small cavity could become larger and more painful in time, requiring oral surgery like a root canal.

Inspecting and monitoring your rental property will help you avoid major issues down the road. They not only help you maintain your property but also spark the tenant to show care for the property, as well.

Types of Rental Property Inspections

Several different types of inspections occur at various times throughout the term of the lease. During each of the inspections, you will want to document everything with dates, clear notes, and pictures. This will help you maintain a condition report of the property and, if needed, could be used during a legal proceeding.

Here are the four main types of rental property inspections.

1. Move-In Inspection

This inspection is done at the beginning of a tenancy and often involves a walkthrough by the property management company (or owner) and the new tenant. Everything is documented so that the tenant will not be held liable at the end of the lease.

2. Move-Out Inspection

This inspection occurs immediately after the tenant has vacated the property. Cross checking the move-in inspection report with move-out report, you can see what damage, if any, has been caused that goes beyond normal wear and tear.

3. Seasonal Inspection

Certain types of proactive maintenance occur on a scheduled time frame. These rental property inspections allow you to check up on your tenant’s care of the property while also addressing issues that require maintenance in the upcoming season.

4. Drive-By Inspection

Sometimes taking a drive-by your property allows you to assess its condition. You don’t invade your tenant’s space, but you can still gather an idea of the level of care and overall condition.

Some property managers hold pre-move-out inspections to give the tenant time to cure anything that may be violating the lease term or affect their deposit return. Pre-management inspections are another type of inspection that is common when a management company takes over a new rental property. They inspect all aspects of the property and document it so that everything has already been reported and addressed when the first tenant moves in. Of course, this also ensures that the property itself is in healthy condition for a tenant – and that it is up to code.

Make Sure Your Tenants Expect It

Many tenants feel that rental property inspections are a violation of privacy and may be hesitant to allow someone to come through the property. It is crucial that your lease clearly states the details of the inspections.

At the lease signing, be sure to review each term of the lease – and discuss the inspections. This allows for transparency and stresses the importance of following the terms stated within the lease. After all, during the inspections, you will be making sure the tenant is holding up his/her end of the agreement, too.

Why You Need Inspections

While there are many reasons you will need to inspect your rental property regularly, we have listed a few of the most important here.

Be proactive with maintenance. As we have already discussed, not addressing some maintenance concerns, such as a minor roof leak, can leave you facing significant repairs down the road.

Pay attention to lease violations. When you are inspecting your property, you are doing so beyond the scope of maintenance. You want to make sure that the tenant is abiding by the lease terms so that your property is in good hands. Because they know you will be inspecting, they have more incentive to follow the terms of the lease.

Increase communication. Again, transparency is essential. If your tenant knows you are monitoring their care of your rental home, then when some issues arise, they are likely to report it. Having a good landlord-tenant relationship is imperative for maintaining quality clients.

How a Property Manager Can Help

Hiring a property manager can take the burden of rental property inspections off of your shoulders. They will take the time to review the property, document the inspection, and often store this info electronically to easily access it in the future. They are familiar with the lease and know what to look for in terms of violations. Also, their experienced team knows preventative maintenance and what needs to be inspected and addressed. Any issues that arise can be handled accordingly to keep your rental property healthy.

It is important to note, however, that not all property managers are the same. When you hire someone to take care of your rental portfolio, you want to make sure you clearly understand the agreement you sign – as well as any fees. Unfortunately, many property managers hide their inspection fees, giving you the impression that it’s a routine service until it happens.

RPM Evolve Sets the Bar High

Real Property Management Evolve thrives on providing the best property management service with an honest approach. We know the practices of other property management companies, and that’s why we set the bar high. At RPM Evolve, we stay away from shady practices and only have the best interest of your rental property in mind.

We list the fees for our inspections right on the pricing page of our website! And, depending on your membership, your property inspections may be included.

We believe that regular inspections throughout the length of the lease will help us manage your property the best. By monitoring the health and condition of your property, we are better able to keep it healthy for years to come without leaving you any hefty repair costs. RPM Evolve has a team of experts in their field who know what to look for and how to address it.

Conclusion

Rental property inspections are a necessary part of managing your properties. Avoid significant issues down the road and keep your tenants adhering to the lease terms with these regular inspections. If you want to leave it to the professionals, hire a top property management team – Real Property Management Evolve!

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Landlord Tips

Fair Housing Act Arizona: How to Protect Yourself and Your Property

As a landlord, it is imperative that you understand the Fair Housing Act in Arizona and how you can protect yourself and your property with the help of a property manager.

We live in a world with laws that are put into place for all sorts of reasons. These laws keep our roadways safe, help keep our children safe, and even help with our job security. Regardless of how good or bad you feel a law is, it was put into place to keep balance within our society – and ensure that everyone has an equal right to an opportunity.

As a landlord or rental property owner, there are specific laws that you must follow to allow everyone a fair chance at renting your property. You cannot pick and choose who you want to allow to rent your property, just as a business owner can’t pick and choose who he will let shop in his store.

Does this mean you have to rent to anyone? No.

Does this mean you have to give everyone a fair chance? Yes.

Let’s take a look at the Fair Housing Act and how the State of Arizona uses it to protect you and your property.

History of the Fair Housing Act

The federal Fair Housing Act was enacted with the 1968 Civil Rights Act. It was done so to eliminate discrimination. Before this act, discrimination was running rampant in Arizona and around the country. Kids learned in schools that were segregated by color, and minorities found it nearly impossible to advance in an economic world. Neighborhoods remained separated by racial divide due to the unfair Arizona housing laws.

The Fair Housing Act did not happen overnight. Nobody came up with this grand idea and decided to run with it. Many people fought long and hard for these equal rights. Shelley v. Kraemer is a court case from 1948 that was filed due to minorities being excluded from certain neighborhoods and sections of cities. This was a fight against the housing patterns that were based on race – and popular at the time.

During the civil rights era of our country, many aspects of discrimination were found in legislation. Title VIII of the Civil Rights Act became known on its own as the Fair Housing Act. Its purpose was to make it illegal for individuals to be discriminated against based on things such as race, religion, sex, and national origin.

The Fair Housing Act would later be amended to include protection for additional groups, including those who are disabled or based on family status. Currently, the federal law prohibits housing discrimination against anyone based on:

  • Race
  • Color
  • Religion
  • Sex
  • National Origin
  • Familial Status
  • Physical or mental disability

The Importance of the Fair Housing Act in Arizona

Housing discrimination laws protect all people, regardless of who they are. As a landlord, these laws are to help guide you so that you do not give unfair treatment to one potential tenant over another. For instance, your tenant screening process should be the same for everyone who applies. And the qualifications that your tenant is required to meet should also be the same. Being consistent, requiring the same documents and fees, and holding each to the same standards is critical.

It should be noted that you cannot:

  • Deny someone the opportunity to rent your property.
  • Advertise to a specific group.
  • Be inconsistent with your qualification standards.
  • Harass a tenant.
  • Refuse to accommodate someone with disabilities.
  • Have an unfair screening process.

Regardless of your personal feelings, you have a property for rent – and everyone must have an equal opportunity to rent it.

Protecting Yourself and Your Property

Whatever you do, you do not want to find yourself in hot water. You do not want to discriminate or insinuate anything – from the first moment of marketing your property until you are moving in a new tenant and beyond. You need to be cognizant of your actions while speaking and behaving in an unbiased manner, no matter who you encounter.

Sometimes, landlords act without looking at the whole picture. It’s easy to do. For instance, if you receive a tenant application for a property from someone who is disabled and in a wheelchair. Would you deny it because it has stairs? After all, how would he or she get upstairs? This is an example of what not to do.

Or what about turning down someone with a service animal because of your no pet policy? This is discrimination, too. If you have someone who helps you with maintenance and he or she picks and chooses whose repairs to do first – this could also be a type of discrimination.

Any time someone feels as though they are being discriminated against, a claim can be filed against you. And each complaint will be reviewed by the Arizona Attorney General Civil Rights Division. Do not find yourself here. By being mindful and knowledgeable of the Fair Housing Act in Arizona, you can avoid these consequences.

A Property Management Company Can Help

Whether you are new to the rental game or are a seasoned landlord, filling a vacancy or working closely with new tenants is always going to make you cautious. You want to do the right thing (hopefully), but one wrong move and you can find yourself under review. It is a lot of stress that most landlords just do not want to deal with.

Leave it to the professionals – property managers who make it their job to know the law and follow it. Inevitably, human error happens. This means if you have a property management team handling your rentals when this poor judgment happens, you are not going to be the one held liable.

The best choice you can make is to hire a property manager with an excellent reputation and a long history of solid, fair housing practice. At Real Property Management Evolve, our team of professionals is well-versed in the Fair Housing Laws in Arizona and makes it a point to follow them. We make sure that your vacancies are filled with the best tenants imaginable – the ones who surpass all qualifications of our non-discriminatory tenant screening.

Final Thought

The Fair Housing Act in Arizona was put in place to ensure that everyone has equal access to the housing available in the market. As a landlord in Arizona, you are required to abide by these laws or face the consequences. Reduce your chance of incidence with a professional property manager.

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Property Management Tips

How to Hire the Best Property Management In Phoenix

To discover, and retain, quality tenants, it is essential that you use the best property management company for your needs – here’s what to look out for.

Everyone has heard of property managers – some great, positive stories and others that have been horrific nightmares. So, when you are a landlord or a homeowner, you may be very interested in obtaining help from a property manager but aren’t too sure where to start.

  • How do you find the best property management team?
  • How do you know you are getting the best management for your property?
  • How do you know your property manager is being transparent about fees?

There are many duties that a property manager fulfills to make your life much, much easier. And there shouldn’t be any surprises along the way. If you want to hire the best property management in Phoenix, then here’s how to do it.

 

The Duties of a Property Manager

Before you hire a property manager, you want to have a good idea of all the duties property managers do. After all, why would you settle for someone who only offers you a fraction of the benefits? As their name suggests, property managers are there to manage your property. From an empty unit to doing the walk-through at move-out and starting over – and everything in between. While it is not exhaustive, we have put together a list of things the best property management team would handle for you. Check it out:

1. Marketing your property.

Every minute your home sits vacant, you are missing out on income. Property management marketing is one of the most important duties, and the best property management team will get your property noticed and desired. They use various websites, networking, and social media platforms to spread the news about the vacancy and spark interest. Then, they follow through to have showings and eventually completed tenant applications.

2. Tenant screening.

You could rent your property to just anyone, but without proper screening, you could be putting yourself at risk – and your property in the wrong hands. Property managers have the knowledge and skills to expertly screen tenants and save you from falling victim to any scams.

3. Rent collection.

Your property manager will handle all invoicing and rent collection, so you don’t have to. Then, for convenience, the monies will be deposited into your account.

4. Maintenance and repairs.

Whether it is preventative or routine maintenance or a late-night emergency repair, your property manager has a network of trained professionals to get the job done right.

5. Property inspections.

Keeping a property safe means scheduling routine inspections. Not only does this help ensure that the property is in good hands with the tenant, but it also allows for any maintenance issues to be addressed before they become bigger, more costly problems.

6. Financial reporting.

You never have to wonder about your finances when you turn your property over to a property manager. The best company will provide you with 24/7 access to view your earnings and expenses securely online anytime you want.

7. Evictions.

No matter how great tenant screening is, every now and then eviction is necessary. The best property management team is well-informed and able to handle the entire legal eviction process for you.

8. Legal guidance.

Last, but certainly not least, the best property manager will understand the importance of following all federal and local housing laws. They work hard to abide by them so you don’t ever have to feel vulnerable or at risk.

 

Where to Find the Best Property Management in Phoenix?

Now that you know all a property manager can do for you, you have probably decided to hire one. If so, great! But don’t just call the first company you find. Instead, you need to do your research.

1. Get referrals.

Talk to your friends, co-workers, realtors, contractors, investors, neighbors, or even accountants. See if they have any recommendations for a property management company. Though, their experience may not be yours so always do follow up their recommendation with your diligent research.

2. Meet before you hire.

Take time to sit down with your potential property manager and get to know them. Ask questions about their service and their business. Get an understanding of how they handle situations – and the fees that they charge to do so. Look for transparency.

3. Check their licensure.

If you are entrusting a company with your investment, you want to make sure they are licensed and certified to handle each aspect of the business, from showing the property to making repairs and such.

 

Look Out for Hidden Fees

When it comes to paying a property management company to handle your investment properties, you want to have a clear idea of what you will be expected to pay. Their fee structure should be clearly outlined with all necessary details exposed. Again, you shouldn’t encounter any surprises.

When something seems too good to be true, it usually is. So if a property manager charges you a low fee each month, there is a good chance they are doing so with the hopes of making it up elsewhere. These hidden fees could come in the form of leasing fees, advertising fees, vendor surcharges, onboarding fees, vacancy fees, lease renewal fees, and so forth. It may even be written in the fine print that you agree to stay with them for a certain period – or else they can charge you.

Pay attention. All of this should be spelled out in the contract and you should understand it fully before you sign. Read the small print – all of it.

 

What Sets the Best Apart From the Rest

So, what sets the best property management apart from the rest? Well, that’s simple. The best will offer you all the services listed above without hiding any fees. They are honest, transparent, and treat your property with compassion and respect as if it were their own. The best companies won’t go out of their way to keep you guessing about your financial statements, fees paid, or whether maintenance ever really occurred.

At Real Property Management Evolve, you will find the best property management team in Phoenix. We offer state-of-the-art technology, open communication, high industry standards, and a list of satisfied customers that speaks to our experience. If you are looking to hire the best property managers in Phoenix, you’ve come to the right spot.