Find Success with Specialized Fort Worth Property Management

Getting into the real estate business seems like an easy and fast way to make money to most people, but with real estate, it’s more about the long haul than the quick fix. Many who get into it and don’t know what they’re doing realize that there are many more costs to pay than rents to collect at the start. It takes patience, persistence, and a reputable Fort Worth property management company, like Specialized Property Management to see the most return on your investment in the end. Consider the following things that a property management company can help you with, saving you both time and money when managing your rental property. 

Advertising

Without a good marketing strategy, potential tenants won’t know where to look for housing or to even consider your property. Rather than assume “if you build it, they will come”, it’s crucial to have an advertising plan in place. At Specialized Property Management in Fort Worth, we have access to resources that you don’t, like getting your property listed on several major real estate listings as well as our own available property list. The first thing you want to avoid is a vacancy where you have to pay the rent on your property while waiting for tenants. Specialized has a proven method for decreasing vacancies and earning you more money. We will also walk through your home with you to get it looking “rent ready” by making small repairs, cleaning, and improving curb appeal. With us, you can rest assured that your property won’t be vacant for long. 

Tenant Selection

Finding good tenants isn’t as easy as you think, and these days tenants can find ways to falsify information. If you don’t know the 5 potential tenant red flags as well as the Fair Housing laws and local regulations in Fort Worth, you may find yourself owing costly legal fees for simple mistakes. Trust Fort Worth property management companies like Specialized Property Management to perform tenant background and credit checks for you. We’ll also perform any other applicable checks into your prospective tenants to legally make sure they’re going to be responsible and not cost you more money. We’ll also handle rent collection, create the lease agreement, perform lease signing, and respond to tenant calls and complaints. With our proven tenant selection system, you can rest assured that you’re getting the best tenants and avoiding vacancies as much as possible. With the addition of a tenant and owner portal on our website, you’ll have constant access to information about your home anytime and from anywhere. 

Maintenance

“Maintenance is no big deal,” one of the biggest assumptions that new rental property owners make. They usually don’t calculate enough cost for maintenance issues into their budget or factor it into rent payment. On average, maintenance costs for a year equals about one and a half month’s rent. If your home is renting for $1,000 a month, make sure to plan on $1500 in maintenance costs. They also assume that issues will be easy to resolve, but this is rarely the case. If you are not responsive to tenants who have a complaint they will feel unheard and frustrated. Fixing issues quickly and effectively, no matter how often they arise, is crucial to your success as a property owner. With Specialized Property Management in Fort Worth, you won’t have to worry about any of the above. Our customer service is available 24/7, so we always respond promptly and professionally to tenant calls. We also partner with national brands to keep repair costs minimal and keep tenants happy. Additionally, we’ll set up regular walkthroughs and inspections to make sure that your property is being taken care of, the property’s value is increasing, and any small maintenance issues don’t turn into bigger, more expensive ones. 

Reduced Liability

It’s our job as one of the top Fort Worth property management companies to know the ins and outs of local, state, and national codes and safety standards. If you don’t utilize our help, you could be drowning in legal fees for breaking regulations you didn’t even know about. By letting us help you, you’ll be protected from legal fees and lawsuits that could arise, saving you a lot of money in the end. Using other smart strategies for limiting liability as a landlord like good insurance and privacy protection are other areas where we can advise you as well. 

Reduced Vacancies

Avoiding vacancies isn’t just about advertising and tenant selection. Your relationship with your tenant is also very important. Being responsive to maintenance calls should be your priority, but you should also have clear, professional, and frequent communication with your tenants. When tenants like their landlords and feel heard by them, they will be more likely to continue renewing their lease year after year, increasing your cash flow. Check in with them periodically, making sure they’re happy, asking if repairs are satisfactory, and if they have any concerns. Specialized Property Management in Fort Worth makes the effort to contact tenants frequently for you. Another way to avoid vacancies is to be pro-pet. Many people won’t even consider living in your property if you won’t allow pets. Tenants will want to stay longer if you allow their pet and you can set specific pet policies to ensure that your property is protected. 

Availability

You want to be available once your tenants are moved in, but before that, when you’re in the advertising phase, you’ll be the first point of contact for people who are interested in renting from you. Calls will start coming in and you’ll need to clear your schedule. Plan on taking the time to show your unit, answer questions, and have lengthy conversations with all the people you meet. If you aren’t available, you risk losing potential tenants and future income. When you hire a Fort Worth property management company, they will be the first point of contact instead of you. You’ll be able to go about your normal schedule and not have to worry about being constantly available, because your property management team is doing it for you and in a way that represents you well. 

Office Work

It’s stressful enough to own a property without having to worry about having perfectly organized documents for everything. Office work in property management can be complicated and time-consuming, consisting of mundane tasks like keeping accurate records, preparing annual reports, accounting, contracting maintenance work, creating budgets, and writing lease agreements. The work will always be there, so being on top of it is really important for the success of your property ownership. Specialized Property Management in Fort Worth can help lower your stress levels by keeping careful records and doing all the office work for you. They’ll help you stay organized which in the end, will save you a significant amount of time, hassle, and money. 

Class Attendance

Did you know that if your property is in a Homeowners’ Association community, you are required to go to HOA meetings? It’s also advised that property owners take classes that educate about rental laws, tax information, and the daily duties of property managers. Additionally, it’s always a good idea to go to county meetings, property investment courses, and local board meetings, where you’ll learn all about owning a rental property. The nice thing about hiring a Fort Worth property management company is that they already know everything you’ll be learning in these classes, and can help you manage all other landlord responsibilities. At Specialized Property Management, it’s our job to know everything there is to know about rental properties and we can handle the intricacies for you. 

Increase Property Value

Owning a property is great but keeping it’s value up or even increasing it is important if you want to continue to make money on it. Some things you can do to increase the value of your home and consequently, charge more for rent, are:

  • A fresh coat of paint – this is a simple way to add value to your home without spending a lot of money. 
  • New carpet or flooring – even if your home is perfectly fine, renters may be easily turned away by stained carpet or cracked floors. 
  • Updated fixtures – new lighting and kitchen and bathroom fixtures are inexpensive and relatively easy to install. Taking the time to replace outdated items will make a huge difference.
  • Energy-efficient appliances – if tenants are paying for utilities, they’ll be more drawn in by energy-efficient items. These things are tax-deductible if you buy them for your rental. 
  • Curb appeal – make the first impression of your property a good one by adding a few flower beds, making sure the lawn is green, and maybe a tree or two.

Specialized Property Management in Fort Worth can help you with all of the above rental property ownership tasks. After all, with over 30 years of experience, we’ve truly seen it all and know what to expect. We’re educated on all of the ins and outs of managing rentals and can handle everything from maintenance calls to rent collection. If you’re ready to decrease the stress in your life, save time and money, and increase your passive income, contact Specialized Property Management today and learn how to get started. 

In Fort Worth, “Rent Out My Home” Really Means Communicate

Every property owner dreams of renting out their real estate investments in Fort Worth to tenants that are clean, responsible, and good communicators. Unfortunately, that’s not always the case, and knowing how to treat your tenants from the start could make the difference between a positive relationship and a negative one. When you tell a tenant in Fort Worth, “rent out my home”, you’re actually telling them much more. Instead of assuming they know, lay out exactly what you mean. If you don’t want to worry about what to do and what not to do, you can hand the tenant relations and communication over to a team of experts like Specialized Property Management. With over 30 years of experience dealing with every tenant situation you can imagine, we know how to promptly and professionally communicate with your tenants to improve your relationship with them and protect your real estate investments in Fort Worth. 

Clear Tenant Communication

From the very beginning, it’s important to set expectations. In Fort Worth, “rent out my home” should also mean take care of my home, call me or my property management company for maintenance issues, and comply with the signed lease agreement. Make sure you both know which method of communication works best for you and the renters, whether it’s email, texting, phone calls, or some combination. Clear communication is key to a happy tenant-landlord relationship. Once both parties know how to communicate, everything else will be much easier moving forward. At Specialized Property Management, we encourage frequent, open communication to create a healthy property owner-tenant relationship. 

Define Consequences

Make sure your tenant reads the lease agreement and understands all of your rules along with their associated consequences. For example, if you don’t want pets living in your real estate investments in Fort Worth, your tenant should know what would happen if they were seen with an unauthorized pet. It’s up to you whether you want to charge a fine, a pet fee each month, or ask them to leave. But it’s also up to you, as a property owner, to make the consequences you choose clear from the start. Specialized Property Management has dealt with noncompliance on many occasions and we can help make sure that the situation doesn’t get emotional or out of hand. We’ll handle everything professionally for you to save you from costly legal fees if things get messy. 

Be Clear About Rent and Keep Rent Rates Fair 

Tenants shouldn’t have any questions about how much rent is and how it is collected each month for your real estate investments in Fort Worth. Make sure they know when rent is due and when it is late, and don’t make any exceptions. Fees should incur in the case of late rent and written notices should be sent if they don’t pay. Eviction is the next step if necessary. Just make sure that you are strict from the start and consistent. One month of making an exception could turn into something you’ll regret for the next six months. If you have a tenant who is responsible and reliable, always paying their rent on time, resist the urge to increase the rent rate. They may be renting from you because they believe rent is fair and you don’t want to risk them leaving and facing months of vacancies. Specialized Property Management will help you set a competitive rent rate in the beginning and inform you of when the market goes up or down and when it’s a good time to increase or decrease your rates. 

Offer Low-Cost Amenities

Making tenants happy isn’t just about clear communication. Another way to foster a good relationship is to provide low-cost amenities. These will help your real estate investments in Fort Worth appeal to more people and sell faster. They’ll also make life easier, safer and more enjoyable for your tenants, making them appreciate you more. Some of the top rental amenities that renters want are below: 

  1. Covered Parking and Garages: In Fort Worth, summer temperatures can be unbearable! Tenants will be looking to rent places with shade, especially for their cars. If you can provide covered parking or a garage, you’ll avoid complaints and problems in the future while helping your property sell faster now. 
  2. A Fenced Yard: Tenants who rent don’t want to feel like they’re in an apartment. A fenced yard provides privacy and helps tenants feel like they have their own home. If they know that they can relax in their backyard or if they have pets, they’ll be much more likely to rent from you if you have a fenced yard available. 
  3. Upgraded Appliances: When you break down the costs of new kitchen appliances, it’s a small sacrifice to make in order to entice more tenants to rent your real estate investments in Fort Worth. They will make your whole property feel updated, make tenants happy, and cause fewer maintenance issues in the future. 
  4. Washer and Dryer in Unit: No one wants to carry their laundry to and from the laundromat when they can just do laundry at home. It’s a major selling point to have a washer and dryer, even if it’s small, available inside your property. 
  5. New Paint: It’s the simple details, like a fresh coat of paint, that give any home a new, clean look and smell. It won’t cost you much in the long run and it could help attract your ideal tenant. 

Respond Quickly to Tenants

One downside of renting for tenants is that they don’t have control over everything that goes on in their home, or your real estate investments in Fort Worth. That’s why, if they don’t get a prompt response from you, the property owner, or your property management team, it can feel very frustrating. They want to feel like their needs are a priority and that their issue will be fixed quickly. In order to have a positive relationship with your tenant, they must do their part, but you also must do yours. Be reliable, or employ Specialized Property Management, who will answer all tenant phone calls and emails 24/7 so you don’t have to always be on call. If you choose to self manage and can’t respond to a tenant in 24 hours, make sure to apologize for the delay to minimize complaints. If you are working on a resolution, keep your tenant updated. Let them know that they are heard and that their issue is being worked on. Inform them again once the issue has been completely resolved. 

Provide a Few Ways to File Complaints

Complaints about your real estate investments in Fort Worth from tenants may be unavoidable, but if they are unhappy with the method of filing a complaint, it will just add insult to injury. Helping them communicate and making sure tenants feel heard is more important than resolving the issue in some instances. Specialized Property Management may implement complaint registries such as these to create a simple and smooth process for tenants: 

  • 24/7 emergency hotline
  • Non-emergency number for business hours
  • Email address
  • Electronic submission form through a website or tenant portal

Respect Tenant Privacy

Always communicate and give plenty of notice to tenants before you show up at their house. At the very least, give them 24 hours notice and send a friendly reminder as the allotted time gets closer. Try your best to never inconvenience your tenants and make them feel like your real estate investment in Fort Worth is truly their private space. 

Give Your Tenants Gifts

Did you know that gifts given to tenants by Fort Worth rental property management companies are tax-deductible? The tax code dictates that if a gift is given for business reasons, the expense deduction is limited to $25 per person, per year. If you give gifts to every person renting from you and you have more than one rental property, these deductions can add up, saving you money and showing appreciation for your tenants. Some ideas of gifts your tenants might like during the holidays are: 

  • Money deducted from next month’s rent
  • Gift cards
  • Gift baskets put together by you, or ordered online, with any theme you choose
  • Appliance upgrades. For example, replacing the washer and dryer if they’re outdated
  • Cleaning services from the local maid service, carpet cleaners, or window washers
  • Holiday light hanging for the holidays
  • Hire a professional to paint a room their choice of color
  • Flowers
  • Baked goods made by yourself or from the local bakery 

Tenant communications can be tough to navigate, but if you follow the above tips closely, you should be able to foster and maintain a healthy, positive, and professional relationship with your renters. You may think that in Fort Worth “rent out my home” means one thing, but unless you communicate what you’re thinking to your tenant, they won’t know. Most tenants are happy to comply as long as you treat them with respect and hold up your rent of the deal. If you’re not sure if you’re up for the consistency and reliability that being a self-managing property owner requires, let Specialized Fort Worth Property Management do it for you. Our team of experts will take care of all the details and make sure that both you and your tenants are happy, possibly making you love your tenants even more! Contact us today to find out more about our services. 

Routine Inspections of Your Rental Investments in Fort Worth

Though both are assessing a home’s maintenance needs, regular rental property inspections and one-time home inspections are not the same. Rental property inspections should happen anywhere from 2-4 times a year and be extremely thorough for rental investments in Fort Worth. Rather than just performing a “clean and safe” check, you should make an effort to dig deeper into an inspection, especially on move-in and move-out days. As a property owner, you may be thinking that frequent rental property inspections are too time-consuming or unnecessary, but the more regular inspections are, the more money you’ll save on neglected maintenance issues or non-compliance problems. Inspections protect you and your rental investments in Fort Worth, while also improving the tenant-landlord relationship. Fort Worth’s Specialized Property Management experts know exactly what to look for in an inspection and how to communicate with your tenant for you. We will conduct move-in, periodic, seasonal, and move-out inspections for you, resolving maintenance and tenant issues as they arise, all while saving you time and money. 

The Importance of Rental Property Inspections

This video by Specialized Property Management explains why inspections are so important and how, if performed correctly, they can protect your investment and improve your relationship with your tenant. Hiring a team of experts who have licensed inspectors on hand, like Specialized Property Management Fort Worth, can make the whole process run smoothly. Some other reasons regular inspections are important are: 

  1. Inspections make sure lease agreements are being followed. Just because your tenant signs a lease stating that they will follow all of your rules and regulations, doesn’t mean that they will remember everything perfectly. If you are a property owner that doesn’t want certain things in the home, like pets or too many people, make sure to put that in the contract and then follow up through regular inspections of your rental investments in Fort Worth. Your inspector should take note each time they stop by your property of which rules are being followed and which are being ignored and then enforce regulations. 
  2. Inspections foster better communication between your tenant and you or the property manager of your rental investments in Fort Worth. Tenants can be hesitant to contact you about a safety problem. They may not know that an overgrown tree is dangerous or they may know and be worried about bothering you. When you or your property management is there in person, you can ask if there’s anything they want to talk about and show them that you care. Once you’ve fostered a good relationship, the next time they have a concern, they’ll be more likely to tell you about it.  
  3. Inspections can catch maintenance issues early, saving you time and money. Tenants don’t know what to look for and may not report something until it’s too late, but inspectors will know if something that seems small is actually a big, costly maintenance issue waiting to happen. The only way to truly protect your rental investment in Fort Worth is to have a licensed inspector come out regularly to catch issues before they get expensive.
  4. Inspections improve tenant behavior. Regular inspections will keep tenants anxiously awaiting your arrival and making sure they’re not leaving the property too dirty or unkempt.
  5. Inspections create good relationships. The more you show that you care about your property and taking care of your tenant’s needs, the more your tenant will trust you and report issues back to you. Open communication and regular in-person inspections will create a better relationship and keep your rental investments in Fort Worth safe.  

How to Perform Rental Property Inspections 

  1. Set expectations with your tenant early in the process. Before your tenant even signs the lease agreement, make sure that they know how often inspections will be happening. Explain to them why inspections are so important, and have them mark their calendar for the dates you’ll be stopping by your rental property in Fort Worth. “Rent my home” should mean take care of it, but that doesn’t always translate. Make sure tenants take responsibility by signing a document that states they understand your inspection terms and will comply. As each inspection gets closer, send them a friendly reminder and make sure to give plenty of notice. Try to schedule inspections around the same time annually so that tenants know how to plan for each coming year. 
  2. Before tenants move in, take interior and exterior pictures of the property, making special notes of marks, spots or imperfections that are preexisting. If during an inspection, your tenants claim that a new mark was already there, you can show them photos as proof and let them know how any repairs will be handled, according to your lease agreement. Take more photos during each inspection so you’ll have something new to go off for the next visit. Be careful not to take photos of your tenants’ personal items as this article explains in “How to Perform a Rental Property Inspection”. Property owners with rental investments in Fort Worth know that they can trust the Specialized Property Management home inspectors to take pictures of all the rooms and areas of the house, including the exterior. They rely on them to take note of what needs repairing and report back. 

What to Inspect When You’re Inspecting

Every home inspector should have an idea of what to look for during a routine rental inspection, but with Specialized Property Management, you can rest assured that we will cover all the areas on your checklist and more. Rather than just checking for major maintenance issues, we’ll make sure that tenants are being compliant to all the terms of the lease agreement, such as number of residents in the home and whether or not there are pets. We’ll also notice things that other home inspectors may write off, such as a leaky pipe that could lead to a huge flooding disaster if left unattended. Your rental investment in Fort Worth and the included appliances, electrical wiring, plumbing, and heating and cooling systems, as well as the items included on this checklist, will last longer with regular performance checks, service, and filter changes. Our qualified home inspector will look at: 

  • The condition of the floors, walls, doors, and windows
  • The functionality of all appliances
  • The functionality and cleanliness of plumbing and pipes, check for any noticeable leaks
  • The functionality of all light fixtures and switches
  • That batteries are up to date in all smoke detectors
  • The functionality of electrical outlets
  • The functionality of heating and cooling systems, including water heater

Another thing that sets us apart from other home inspectors is that our team will repair issues while inspecting your rental investment in Fort Worth. It’s crucial that issues seen during an inspection, even if they seem small, are repaired promptly. Waiting to fix something usually leads to a bigger and more expensive problem down the road. 

Move-in and Move-out Inspections

We have been focusing on routine and seasonal inspections because move-in and move-out inspections should be common sense. No matter when your last inspection was, make sure to perform another one before any tenant moves into your property and before any tenant moves out. These inspections open up communication about the home’s current condition and sets the tone for what the tenant can expect from the property management company. Being at your rental investment in Fort Worth when a tenant moves in will also help reassure them and acknowledge that you are aware that any previous damage was not caused by them. During a move-out inspection, you can openly talk about any damage caused by the tenants and discuss how repairs will be paid. 

Specialized Fort Worth Property management 

Don’t let the task of regular inspections overwhelm you, especially if you have more than one rental property. Your Specialized Property Management team is designed to make life easier for you while saving you money by taking care of all inspections. We offer prompt and professional routine checks and communicate regularly with tenants to make sure they know what to expect. While performing inspections, we also perform quick and quality repairs, keeping your rental investment in Fort Worth safe and well taken care of. The better your property looks, the more tenants will want to take care of it themselves. 

Keep in mind that a well taken care of rental property will rent faster and sell at a higher price. We offer a free market assessment when you decide to hire Specialized Property Management, and our team of experts offer first-rate services and results when compared to other property management companies in Fort Worth. “Rent my home” will clearly translate to “take good care of my home” when regular, thorough inspections are happening. We’ll keep you up to date with each inspection by sending you condition reports and photos of both the interior and exterior of your property and make sure to give tenants at least 24 hours’ notice before the inspection. Contact us today to learn more about how we can help you maintain your beautiful rental property.