TOP FIVE REAL ESTATE TRENDS IN FORT WORTH

Predicting trends is about like predicting the weather. But the stats and data look sound for supporting these top five trends as we close out the 2015 market here in Fort Worth, Texas.

  1. It is still a seller’s market.

Temps are hot, but the housing market is hotter. Housing sales in North Texas are at a record high. Mid-summer this year more than 10,000 pre-owned single-family homes in North Texas sold in one month. RECORD BREAKING. A Fort Worth management company knows families are on the hunt for a new place to settle down. With sales numbers this high in North Texas it is an excellent time to look to purchase investment rental property. And there is no reason your property should sit empty.

  1. Inventory is low.

Permits to build are on the rise, but for the time being inventory is low across the Fort Worth market. Fort Worth property managers foresee this is a temporary advantage and seek to maximize investments now while the market is in the owner’s favor. As market inventory grows over coming months competition could get tough. With proper prep rental housing should see few vacancy days.

  1. Prices are up.

As part of a seller’s market, and with inventory down at the moment, prices have continued to climb. Locking renters in a slightly higher rate while it is comparable to other market rates is a way to get an edge on profit over time.

  1. Invest  Buying is Great

Unemployment is down, the economy is up, interest rates are low, and foreign investment in American real estate is high. Mortgage rates are cheaper than the average rent, so Fort Worth property managers are buckling down to make sure they have a competitive edge against an increasingly appealing option to buy. Choosing the best properties, and making those properties attractive to potential tenants gives that needed edge.

  1. Millennials are still looking to rent.

Although the market may favors buying over renting, the effects of the recession on lending are still present. The belt is still tight for young families looking for loans, and for many of them buying is not an option. Fort Worth management company personnel know the market demographics and how to cater to this type of renter and keep units full.

As we wrap up the year and the weather and the market begin to cool off, keeping these trends in mind will help owners maximize returns by reducing or eliminating vacancies.

Avoiding Tenant Turnover

There is nothing like losing a tenant to kill your cash flow. Administrative, advertising, maintenance work to get a unit rent-ready, and showing costs are a few of the many hits your wallet will take when you have tenant turnover, not to mention the lack of rent checks during vacancies daysArlington real estate management has a few tips to help you keep your renters from jumping ship.

 

Properly Screen Applicants

After meeting a tenant in person, it is important to complete proper screenings as part of processing an application. Background and credit checks will help you determine how reputable this potential renter will be. By thoroughly prequalifying future tenants, you’ll avoid those who have questionable items in their past and who are more likely to be short-term renters.

 

Avoid Above Average Rent Increases

Arlington rental management is aware of market standards when it comes to rent averages. While annual rent increases are common, the profits you make from hiking the rent regularly will not cover the costs of rental turnover if tenants become frustrated with rent increases. Keeping rent in par with the area averages will help keep renters around. It is important to know the market your rental unit is in and keep your rent at the right amount for that market. Specialized knows the Arlington rental management market to price properties accurately.

 

Promptly Respond to Tenant Requests

Quick responses to requests for repairs and other such needs is a vital feature to good management. Arlington real estate management knows that renters become disillusioned fast if management does not respond to complaints quickly. In spite of a myriad of other appealing features, a renter will leave if they feel a property is not managed adequately. Specialized has 24 hour call centers to help with those unwanted emergencies that come at the most inconvenient time. Fast proactive maintenance done by professional people is also important for both avoiding bigger maintenance problems in the future and keeping tenants comfortable in their home right now.

 

Maintain Renter Relations

Open communication is key to maintaining long-term renters. The day a renter signs a lease should not be the last day they hear from you before moving out. Arlington rental management ensures all renters know how to easily reach them in time of need. Regularly touching base in a friendly, non-commercial way helps your renters develop a lasting relationship with you that will help them want to stick around. Also scheduling regular inspections at the time of leasing signing shows your concern for both tenant and property.

 

Why Renting is Popular

Renting is becoming more and more popular, especially in the demographics of those between the ages of 18 and 35. Recently a thousand renters in this age bracket were surveyed to find out the top reasons why renting is the lifestyle of choice for them. Understanding the minds of these renter can help Fort Worth property managers attract these renters to their units and keep them happy in long term rental contracts.

 

Not So Handyman Gets Maintenance Help

A top reason for someone to choose renting a home over purchasing is the ability to call maintenance. When you don’t have the skills yourself to fix problems around the house, constantly calling someone to come do the work for you can get very expense. When asked about maintenance, any renter feel less pressure about worrying about serious repairs on things like furnaces, appliances, water heaters. It is simply easier to make a simple call and let your Fort Worth property management company take care of the problems. Specialized has the resources for group discounts for maintenance supplies and equipment. So tenant and property owners both win when a repair is needed.  Regular inspections helps keep an eye on potential problems before they turn into a bigger headache with bad timing.

 

Freedom

Renting means less commitment where you have to stay. Fort Worth property management can decide lease options. Renters can choose to follow job options with less worry about leaving behind real estate if a relocation is necessary.  Relationships, neighborhoods, pets, are all life changes that may mean a new location is needed. Renting gives that freedom. And many of these renters that were surveyed didn’t think that their renting status would change anytime soon even though most did not grow up in a rental situation.

 

Money and Convenience

One of the top reasons given by renters for choosing to rent over signing a mortgage is the bottom line cost is generally cheaper. Even though renter know they aren’t building equity with property ownership, rent can be less expensive overall than a mortgage payment. That can leave more money in the bank for important things like food and utilities.

Fort Worth property managers can be assured that the population of renters is not declining. People are always going to be looking for that perfect home in just the right neighborhood where they can put down some roots at least for awhile. Investment rental property owners will be there to help them move in.

Communication is Key: Tips on Effective Landlord-Tenant Communication

Good communication is essential for any Arlington property management business. Open and direct communication between tenants and landlords will ensure a successful relationship. Establishing great communication is important from the start, even when someone is still a prospective renter. This Arlington rental property management approach will help you avoid stress, land profitable deals, and keep you out of legal trouble. Follow these simple tips to get you started on a path to great open communication.

 

Be Professional

A tenant is essentially your customer. Maintain a respectful, non-emotional communication style when associating with renters. Using “sir” or “ma’am,” asking if another time is better when kids are crying, or simply asking how the person is doing are all easy ways to be polite. Avoid crossing your arms or showing other defensive or aggressive body language indicators. Smile and show regular eye contact as you listen carefully to your tenant. Property management in Arlington TX knows that professionalism is more than good customer service, it is the gateway to positive communication.

 

Be Flexible

One size of communication does not fit all. Pay attention to the different communication needs of each tenant, and do not assume that one approach will achieve the same result with all of your renters. If one renter prefers phone calls and another prefers emails, take care to cater to each communication need. It may seem like a hassle at first to change a style for one renter, but in the end, for Arlington rental property management it is worth the extra effort to develop those positive landlord-tenant relationships.

 

More is more

Do not hesitate to over communicate. So often we walk away from a conversation thinking our message was loud and clear when really all parties made assumptions based on the communication (including words, tone, and body language) that skews the message from the original intent. “More” does not need to be “more complicated,” but regular, simple communication will help ensure everyone is clear on your expectations as property management in Arlington TX.

Ultimately, remember you are working with people. And that human-nature element requires a little patience and skill on your part to create effective communication. As Arlington rental property management, communication is essential. You have opportunity to communicate at the time of lease signing and at regularly scheduled inspections. Awareness of what it takes to be a good communicator, and even some conscious practice, can help get you in the right direction for success. Your communication can show you care and you are professional.

Fort Worth Property Managers Help Tenants Stay Safe

When a tenant feels their safety and security is a priority to their Fort Worth property management company, they just may decide to stay a little longer in their new rental home. Safety issues can vary with the seasons when weather changes. But at any time of year safety is everyone’s concern and some simple ideas can help tenants be and feel safer in  your unit.  

 

Safety Outside

Walking around the outside your unit can quickly give you an idea where your property may need some safety fixes. Any overgrown landscaping can be a perfect place for burglars to hide in. Cutting back overgrown shrubs and cleaning up landscape around a home can not only look nicer but also make the outside of your home safer from lurking burglars and potential accidents. Fort Worth property managers should make sure that there is adequate outside lighting as a good deterrent for potential lurkers. Breezeways, garages, back porches can all have some lighting. Motion sensored lights are nice outside for a quick flash of light when coming into a dark corner. Other safety issues outside are stairways or paths that need repair. Rain gutters and drains should be kept clear and functioning properly. Always make sure there are no exposed electrical wires.

 

Inside Safety

We all want to feel safe in our own homes. A tenant can feel reassurance when little details are taken care of right at the lease signing. All locks should be re-keyed. In most places this is even the law required when new tenants move in their new home. Making sure all detectors like smoke detectors are in working order with fresh batteries is also important for a tenant’s peace of mind. A list of all local emergency agencies or neighborhood watch groups can be provided to the tenant at the lease signing as well.  A Fort Worth property management company can take further steps by installing security systems. These systems are even more valuable when linked directly to local police and fire departments,

 

Scheduled Safety Checks

Maintaining a property is an ongoing job for Fort Worth property managers. But any preventive work beats the major problems that come with neglect.  And keeping your tenant safe is sadly also a legal issue for property owners, keeping tenants safe is keeping you out of messy liability lawsuits.  Regularly scheduled safety inspections can be discussed at the time of lease signing.  Tenants will know that you have a professional concern and a proactive attitude towards the safety measures you take with your property and your tenants.

Even a Landlord Needs a Vacation

Just because your tenants rely on you daily to ensure the maintenance of the properties they are renting does not mean that you never get another vacation from your 24/7 job. A bit of careful planning will ensure that you get the vacation you want while you tenants continue to get the care that they need. Arlington property management helps landlords seeming to run one-person businesses find relief and time off. Following a few steps with an Arlington management company gets you on the right path to help you prepare for vacation success.

 

Clear the Schedule

While a landlord’s duties are never truly over, wrapping up all pressing large tasks before taking off will create a window of downtime that makes for a more relaxing time off. Whether it is a large remodeling job or transitioning your unit from one season to the next, Arlington managers mark off these large jobs so tenants do not get frustrated with lingering projects while the landlord is away. Just as it is important to schedule regular property inspection, you can schedule your vacation time opposite those inspections. When you have something on the calendar, you are more likely to prepare and make time for that personal appointment.

  

Choose the Right Time 

The responsibilities of a landlord naturally ebb and flow throughout the year. Try to schedule time off around the natural lulls to be the least disruptive. Leaving after Arlington property management has collected rent that month and during a month in between spring and fall maintenance or not by a holiday will prove to be less stressful both during and after your vacation. Sometimes the off season for other vacationers is the perfect time for you.

 

Finalize a Temporary Replacement 

Whether you have one or many rental units, consider hiring an Arlington management company. Arlington managers can offer real peace of mind for both a landlord and a tenant as they fill the gap during the downtime. Choosing a trusted replacement will help you keep up on tasks while you are gone so you have less to worry about when you return from your vacation as well. Always let tenants know of the replacement services and direct all concerns to the Arlington property management during your designated vacation period. Avoid giving your person contact information or details about your vacation location to tenants. Emphasize the importance of working through the temporary replacement first for all needs. Then enjoy some earned R&R.

Pet-Friendly Renting can Increase rent Revenue

As a residential rental property owner, your goal is to add to your cash flow by increasing revenue and decreasing expenses. Often Fort Worth property managers feel that by allowing their tenants to have pets in their rental units, the property value will decrease and maintenance costs will increase so your cash flow is ultimately hurt. But studies have shown that with fewer unit vacancy days, added premium pet deposits, and minimum actual damage to property, allowing pets in truth increase your investment’s cash flow.

 

Pet-Friendly Policies Decrease Vacancy Days

Studies have shown that 62% of Americans are pet owners. The majority of those pet owners own dogs.  Pets are usually seen as valued members of the family and can influence the choices of where a family ultimately lives. And because there is such a shortage of pet friendly rental property options, by adopting a pet friendly policy for your rental unit you open the door to many more possible tenants. Immediately you can see the benefits of faster renting, decreasing your days of vacancy. Once a tenant knows they are in a comfortable pet friendly home they will more likely want to stay in one place. Less tenant turnover time also gives fewer vacancy days for Fort Worth property managers. And with Fort Worth property management, fewer vacancy days means greater cash flow.

 

NO Risk of Greater Damages Caused by Pets

A Fort Worth property management concern with allowing pets is the cost of repairs and damages caused by animals. Studies of pet owners in rental property has shown that the actual damage caused to property from pets isn’t much higher than normal damages caused by non pet owning tenants. Pet deposits required at leasing can more than cover any pet related damages, so Fort Worth property management risk for allowing pets is low.

 

Customize your Policies

Many Fort Worth property managers are concerned about potential damages and increased insurance costs when rental units allow for pets. A non-profit animal group FIREPAW has developed a companion Animal Renters Program (CARP) that can help create individual pet programs, customized pet policies and pet agreements for your leasing situation. They have dispelled the negative myths around pets and renting and help both landlords and tenants work together to establish more pet friendly renting options.
Specialized is an experienced Fort Worth property management company that can take care of the needs of all your tenants and provide an environment that makes tenants feel at home.