At Specialized Property Management Fort Worth our team works hard to make sure your investment is a success. After years as a top real estate property management company, we specialize in keeping your property running smoothly and efficiently so you can maximize your cash flow. With the proven processes that we have developed over time, we know exactly how to avoid common, and uncommon, mistakes. These mistakes can lead to fines, costly repairs, and even evictions. Below we share with you the top mistakes landlords make, and what you can do to avoid them.
Leasing Delays and Extended Vacancies
One of the fastest ways to lose money in the rental property market is by having an extended vacancy. Not only are you losing out on the rent each month, but you are also still incurring expenses such as taxes and utility costs. Many things can factor into a leasing delay. For example, if your current tenant is still living in the house when a potential tenant is looking at the house, they are less likely to rent it. A lack of curb-appeal is a turn off for many applicants and could mean they decide to rent somewhere “prettier”. Failure to run background checks promptly or get leasing documents signed leads to even more delays. With processes in place and experts on the job, you won’t have to worry about any of these leasing delays or losing money. For more information about how we deal with vacancy days check out this post.
Poor Rental Property Selection
Location, location, location! It may sound cheesy, but this saying holds a lot of truth. Before you even purchase a rental property, you need to select the right one. What amenities does your neighborhood have? Are there good schools and restaurants nearby? If you’re curious how a certain neighborhood stacks up, check out their walk score. You can see how the local schools are rated. Talking to neighborhood residents and property managers will also help you determine the quality of life in an area. Choose a home that has at least 1,500 square feet, three bedrooms, and a good layout. Finally, make sure you compare rentals around the area to find out average rent prices and time on the market. For even more tips on rental property selection read our blog post on the subject.
Property is Not “Rent Ready”
Imagine going to a showing at a potential rental home and seeing broken light fixtures, trash in the yard, and the current tenant’s dirty socks on the floor. Even if the property manager promises repairs will be made and professionals will be called in to clean, the first impression has already been made. Before you put your rental home on the market, your current tenant must move out completely and you must perform any needed repairs. Landlords who skip these steps often end up with longer vacancies because they drive away potential tenants. Show your home only when it is looking its best. Touch up paint, fix anything broken, have professionals give the home a deep clean, and you will reap the benefits of patience. Read here to find out exactly how we work to make your property rent-ready.
Inadequate Tenant Qualification
How do you know you are getting a reliable tenant? It all starts with strict tenant qualification standards. Some Fort Worth rental management companies decide to skip this step or only require a credit check. But even if a tenant’s credit is good, their income may not adequately cover the rent, they may have a criminal record, or they have a previous eviction. At Specialized Property Management Fort Worth we know that screening tenants thoroughly reduces your risk of late payments, property damage, and eviction, so we make it a priority. For more information about our strict tenant qualifications read here.
Negative Tenant Interaction and High Turnover
As an experienced real estate property management company we know dealing with tenants can often be fraught with emotion. This is especially true when you are renting out a home you used to live in and still love. The truth is most tenants don’t take care of the home with the same level of care an owner would. The frustration, anger, and other feelings you have can easily damage your relationship with your tenant. If a tenant is has a bad experience, they are unlikely to renew their lease, leading to a high turnover rate. In the most extreme cases, negative interactions ensue and can lead to an eviction. To avoid negative tenant interactions, you must first take a step back. Make sure you are treating your investment as a business, realize most tenants don’t upkeep a home as a homeowner would, and be clear and consistent in every interaction. Many homeowners find a third party company like Specialized Property Management Fort Worth is very helpful in avoiding negative interactions. To learn more read this post.
Inadequate Rent Collection
Rent collection processes often feel burdensome, particularly if you are not offering a convenient online payment option. According to a survey by Citigroup, the majority of Americans have paid a bill late. The top reason is not that they did not have the cash, it is simple forgetfulness. Set clear and firm expectations with your tenant when they sign the lease so they know what day to pay rent, when the rent is considered late, what fees will be applied to late payment, and when you will start the eviction process. To make paying rent easier, you should offer automatic online rent payment. Most Fort Worth rental management companies, like Specialized Property Management Fort Worth, offer automatic rent payment so your tenant is never late and your cash flow never slows. Read more about our rent collection process here.
Rules and regulations abound in the rental property industry. These rules exist for the protection of landlords and tenants alike, but that does not make remembering them easy for landlords, particularly if being a landlord is not your full-time job. Also, some landlords cut corners thinking it will save them money or boost their cash flow but end up paying more in fines and legal fees. Here is a brief list of the many regulations property owners need to follow:
- Americans with Disabilities Act
- Texas Fair Housing Law
- Habitability laws
- Local smoke detector regulations
- Trust accounting laws
A real estate property management company has the experience, knowledge, and proven processes to navigate these regulations for you. To learn more about legal risks and how Specialized Property Management Fort Worth can help you avoid them read this post.
Neglecting Inspections and Maintenance
Regular inspections and proactive maintenance are important for the long-term success of your rental property investment. Imagine this scenario: your tenant is half-way through their lease and ready for a mid-lease inspection. You know their AC needs a check up too. However, the inspection and maintenance will cost at least $250 and you decide to save that money and skip the work. A week later your tenant discovers a pipe has been slowly leaking for a few days, causing water damage in the bathroom. Then the AC stops working and the repair person states that the build-up from not cleaning the ducts has turned into an expensive problem. Now instead of $250, you are looking at $2500 in repairs. You see how a small upfront cost can turn into big savings down the road. For information about what to expect from a property inspection read this post.
Self-Management to Save Money
Often property owners will decide to self-manage so that they can save money. This is a great idea in a perfect world. But, unfortunately, we don’t live in a perfect world. If you look at a cost breakdown, most property owners end up saving money when they hire an experienced real estate property management company. Here are just a few ways Specialized Property Management Fort Worth can save you money:
- Local experts will guide you to the right property and price it appropriately.
- Experienced property managers handle tenant interactions for a lower turnover rate.
- Our team will help you avoid costly management mistakes.
Fort Worth rental management companies are not all the same. Specialized Property Management Fort Worth has experienced property managers who can make your investment a success. For a free rental consultation call Specialized Property Management Fort Worth today.