You are aiming to continuously simplify property management as a landlord, so you can grow your portfolio of properties selectively.
Heading into 2018, let’s take a fresh look at 4 strategies to simplify property management as a landlord — so you can manage properties with less time and invest more time in your financial independence.
- Re-examine your property criteria
- Refresh your candidate criteria
- Create and refine systemic processes
- Lower vacancy turnaround and turnover with renter benefits
1. Re-Examine Your Property Criteria
As housing cycles and personal circumstances evolve, refresh your property criteria. As you start on your landlording journey, a ‘winner’ is likely different than as you grow your knowledge base and network.
A few of our clients have recently sold properties because they are upgrading their investment homes, others because a few properties no longer met their financial criteria. Brilliant! Be clear on your threshold return on equity and take an empirical view.
One of our favorite real estate investor bloggers, Coach Carson, recently wrote a great new blog on retirement. To prepare for the blog, he states:
“…my business partner and I have set a goal to sell 7 to 10 properties this year, or about 10% of our 90+ units.
Why sell? And why now?
Selling in our case is like pruning a fruit tree. We want to get rid of the non-ideal properties to free our time and money for better opportunities…”
2. Refresh Your Candidate Criteria
With time and cycles, remember to update your candidate criteria. Most markets tightened in 2017, allowing you the opportunity to firm up your financial and behavioral criteria.
Where possible, raise the bar on credit scores, debt to income, rent to income, and the like. If you allowed pets or smokers when you didn’t really want to, consider changing these qualifications.
3. Create and Refine Systemic Processes
Think through the major steps of managing a property after you’ve purchased and prepared it for rent:
Do you have a process for handling each step? Are there ways you can automate more of the steps?
Creating a process that can be easily repeated will simplify your life for one property and make it easier to be successful with multiple properties.
As an example, tenant screening becomes much easier once you have documented rental acceptance criteria that you refresh with time and experience. It still takes time of course, but less time, and less stress. Similarly, collecting rent is easier electronically with multiple properties as it leads to automatic rent reporting, easier tracking etc.
4. Lower vacancy and turnover with renter benefits
Provide benefits that your renters and candidates care about.
For good renters, consider:
- Reporting their rent payments to the bureaus to help improve their credit; it may entice them to stay longer
- Improving the property in a meaningful way to your renters — ask them!
- Extending lease terms favorably
This will not only help your financials but keep you focused on selectively adding more rentals.
Consider using these 4 strategies to simplify property management as a landlord. Minimizing time spent on property management and turnovers means more time to focus on growing your rental portfolio. With systemic processes, you’ll gain the confidence and knowledge to add properties with less time.
Rent Marketplace helps independent landlords, property owners and local property managers save time and money with our integrated one-stop shop solution suite. With online applications, tenant screening, state-specific leases and more, users can move in better residents, faster.