Multiple Rental Properties: How to Manage Them Like a Pro
Being a landlord is probably one of the easiest ways to earn some money. But if you are the landlord of multiple rental properties, you basically won’t ever have to worry about your financial situation. However, it’s essential to understand that, even though this will bring you a sizable income, it also brings many hindrances and challenges that can sometimes be overwhelming. If you want to manage multiple rental properties like a pro, here’s what you should do.
Make a Good Marketing Plan
In the world of rental properties, having vacancies is the thing every real estate investor wishes to avoid. That’s why you need to make sure that qualified tenants are aware of your properties so that they can apply and thus improve your cash flow.
Here is where a good marketing plan comes into play. Make sure you advertise your properties through mediums your target audience, or in this case, ideal tenants, mostly use. If, for example, your ideal tenants are students, advertising your properties on various social media platforms like Instagram and Facebook is the best way to go.
Perform a Background Check
Attracting tenants is not particularly difficult; however, attracting the right tenants is a different story. Again, it’s very important to determine who your ideal tenants are so that you can eliminate those who don’t fit your criteria.
That’s why you should perform a background check of your tenants before you make any decisions. The things you should pay attention to the most are whether your potential tenant has any criminal history if their income is stable, how many people will be sharing the property, and if they have any pets. You can also ask your potential tenants to present a letter of recommendation from their previous landlord if you need any further assurance.
Maintain Your Properties
Next, you should know that you’ll have to maintain all of your properties regularly. This means that you’ll have to make sure that your properties are always in peak condition and take care of any potential issues as soon as they appear.
Therefore, you’ll need to create a good system that will allow you to take care of things easily and quickly. So, having experts like emergency electricians, plumbers, locksmiths, and painters on speed dial is the smartest way to go. This way, you’ll be able to take care of any potential problems and as soon as they appear and deal with renovation projects on time.
Keeping up with the rental market
Consider this a second level of maintenance for your properties. As tenants move, and before you advertise, you’ll want to dive into current rental rate research to ensure you’re charging market rent for your properties. If your property rent is too low, you may attract less than ideal tenants. If the rental rate is too high, your unit could sit vacant for longer and cost you cash flow. Using a good rental rate evaluation tool like Rentometer will give you a good idea of where your property stands compared to the overall area and in your property’s neighborhood.
You can dig deeper by using the filters, look at historical trends for the area and look at the other property’s amenities for the rent they charge. This will keep your rental earning market value and often increase your cash flow.
Foster Good Relationships with Your Tenants
Some landlords fail to realize that the property they’ve rented becomes the home of their tenants. This means that you shouldn’t meddle in your tenants’ business, at least not until they break a specific rule or ask for your help/opinion.
Therefore, you should always be civil and polite to your tenants but try not to get too emotionally attached to them, as that can cause some problems down the line. To explain further, if you get too close to your tenants and they fail to make a payment for a specific month, you might be tempted to forgive them, which will lead to numerous other problems. Instead, you should show compassion and meet them halfway, but tell them that you will charge them a late payment fee with the next installment and explain that such behavior will lead to eviction if continued.
As you can see, managing multiple rental properties is a challenging task. Still, if you create a clear plan and know what your next step should be – no matter the situation – this entire endeavor will become significantly easier. Also, show respect to your tenants and accept nothing less in return.
About the Author: Lillian Connors can’t resist the urge to embark on many green living/home improvement projects and spread the word about them. She cherishes the notion that sustainable housing and gardening will not only make us far less dependent on others regarding the dwellings we inhabit but also contribute to our planet being a better place to live. You can check her out on Twitter.