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Keep a photo history of your rental unit's condition to avoid disagreements over returning security deposits. Take a lot of pictures before giving the keys to a new tenant. Later, when the tenant is preparing to move out, go through your unit and compare its condition to the 'before' photos. This way, you can see whether damages occurred during your tenant's stay.Read More »

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Landlords are some of the busiest people we know. Most have full-time jobs, and many manage their property portfolios with little or no professional help. They're on call for emergency repairs and tenant crises, and they must carve out time to show their rentals, and to meet incoming and outgoing tenants for the before and after walk-through tours.

The absolute last thing the average landlord wants to spend time on is grounds maintenance.Read More »

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Since rental income is the chief reason people consider buying investment properties, choosing the right rent amount requires a great deal of thought. But how do landlords decide what to charge?

Formerly, they spent weeks scanning newspaper ads for comparable rental units, and seeking advice from market experts. Now, though, anyone with internet access and a calculator can figure it out for themselves.

The two most important considerations in setting an appropriate rent amount are:Read More »

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Landlords typically clean carpets, repaint and make minor repairs when a tenant moves out and before a new tenant moves in. At some point, however, addressing normal wear and tear just isn't enough to give a rental the facelift it needs. In that case, it may be time to consider a serious renovation.

How much work should a landlord perform to update a rental property? And, will the work merely keep a unitRead More »

View related threads in the General Property Management Forum »

Recent News Articles

Will_the_Trend_with_Short-Term_Leases_Last_4-2-17_SQUARE Will the Trend With Short-Term Leases Last?
Short-term rentals are eliciting a strong backlash in communities across the nation. Officials from Los Angeles to Capitol Hill are fielding complaints and mulling new regulations as the trend in short-stay leases grows. Airbnb alone has 3 million properties listed for rent worldwide, up from 550,000 in December, 2013. For residential owners, the chance to host strangers who want to live like locals during brief visits to unfamiliar cities is an opportunity to get ahead on their mortgage or save for retirement. To the visitors themselves, short leases can offer the most affordable vacation opportunity. Read More »
Are_Rental_Lease_Rules_Really_Different_From_State_to_State_SQUARE Are Rental Lease Rules Really Different From State to State?
Did you know that if you are a Pennsylvania landlord with a tenant who hasn't paid rent - and your written lease agreement states that no notice is required to evict for non-payment of rent - that you can legally start the eviction process without sending your tenant a notice? Yes, that's allowed by Pa. law. But you'd better not try that in the adjacent state of New Jersey. Rights of tenants in the Garden State cannot be waived. A N.J. lease agreement that declares tenant rights are waived, even if the tenant signed the lease, is unenforceable. Read More »
Why_Does_Eviction_Take_So_Long_SQUARE Why Does Eviction Take So Long?
You want your tenants out and you want them out today. You have been more than patient, your tenants are taking advantage of you, and things are only going to get worse. So, why can't you just kick them out immediately? Wouldn't any judge understand that eviction is appropriate under these typical scenarios? • Tenants haven't paid rent in months. • Tenants let other people move in and never told you or asked permission. • The last time tenants let you in to inspect, you saw the unit was trashed. These examples – among many others – are lease violations and landlords do not have to put up with them. And, yes, action is definitely called for. Unfortunately, far too many landlords make wrong assumptions about the action they are per Read More »
134844759_m A Proposed Federal Rule Change Has Landlords Anxious
Alarm is spreading among rental property owners over a proposal that would hold them liable if they failed to stop their tenants from harassing other tenants who are protected by anti-discrimination laws. The Federal Department of Housing and Urban Development rule could be enacted as early as this fall. What has landlords with multiunit properties worried is that they would be held responsible for failing to stop discrimination action by one tenant against another tenant in a protected class – even if the landlord didn't know the discrimination was occurring. No need to panic, according to HUD. The rule is only a clarification of an existing policy. And since it doesn't call for any new duties on the part of landlords, HUD states, Read More »
Pokemon_Go_Away_V4_SQUARE Pokemon Go...AWAY!
Things were getting out of hand at the small senior center in Quebec City. Hordes of people gathered every evening on the lawn of the private center on a quiet residential street. Strangers set up chairs and spread blankets as if it were a public park. Using smartphones loaded with a hot new game, the crowds played late into the night. Some nights, according to seniors who live at the site, groups of more than 100 people played Pokemon Go until 3 a.m., keeping the neighborhood wide awake. The center director finally hired a security guard to shoo away trespassers, some of whom had been urinating on trees and dropping trash on the property. Read More »
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