Apartment management can be easy if you follow a few basic rules.
1. Never give a tenant the keys without the money and a signed contract
- Sometimes you will not have a contract handy and you will give a tenant the keys without a contract. The tenant sometimes will refuse to sign the contract later. A binding contract makes an eviction easier.
- If all the adults do not sign, then they can stop the Marshall later by saying that they were not served so get all adults to sign.
2. Never give a tenant the keys without first getting an application
- More tenants will take care of the property and pay the last months rent because they believe that you might hurt their credit because you have their information.
3. Try to avoid evictions by talking with the tenant that is late and by doing necessary repairs.
- Many times the apartment manager promised the tenant some repair and the apartment manager will not tell the owner because it would reflect badly on the apartment manager so they let the owner evict the tenant. You must always talk with the tenant. If you do the necessary repairs, many times the tenant will avoid an eviction because they know you have receipts and they will lose in court.
4. Try to avoid evictions because they are not worth the money.
-It is best to only accept tenants that have
- Good credit
- A job
- The first month’s rent and a security deposit.
5. Use Craig list to list Vacant properties because you get a higher quality tenant.
6. Learn to re-key a lock and keep duplicate keys
7. Use wax bait for rats so they will not come on your property.
- If you put wax bait around your property on wood fences and around corners, rats that come from other properties will die off. This way you never have to deal with rats, they die outside your property. Also by decreasing the rat population in the properties around your property you lower the chance of having rats up to two years. This bait is not harmful to cats or dogs but is harmful to hamsters and small rabbits.
8. Things to put in your contract.
- Cannot Keep Stalled Cars on the Property.
- Cannot Play Music after 8:00 at Night.
- Cannot keep boxes and Beds outside.
- Cannot store boxes in the crawl space under the home.
- Cannot paint walls a dark color.
9. Get an apartment owners contract that is “Pro” Owner.
- The main clause that is in a pro owner contract is that the tenant has to have their own insurance in the case of a roof leak or other natural disaster. I have had roofs leak and tenants get all mad and not pay the rent then move the next month. You can avoid all the pain of wondering if you are responsible or not by just getting a contract from an apartment owners association.
- There are other clauses that ensure a victory in an eviction and don’t assume that any contract will do.
10. Don’t Show an Apartment before it is clean and painted.
- If you show an apartment before it is clean and painted it will not rent. You are just wasting your time. People will be turned off by the dirty apartment and you will lose a prospective tenant. It is best to have prospective tenants wait. If the person seems like they will make a good tenant give them an application and get their phone number so that you can follow up with them when it becomes available.
- When they see a vacant apartment that is fixed, clean and painted it will look spacious and cheery so it will rent fast.
11. Create demand.
If you have two vacancies only show one.
- If you have two vacancies and show both, they will not rent. The person will think that it will take you weeks to find two tenants so they will keep looking to see if they can find a better price. After they continue to look, they will imagine that your tenants are so noisy and they will be afraid to rent your unit.
- It is ten times harder to rent units if you show both vacancies. This is not an exaggeration.
- If the area is nice, you could tell them that the phone is ringing and it probably will not last long.
- If your rent is low, the apartment is Clean, and you only show one unit at a time the units rent very fast.
12. If the Apartment does not rent, consider replacing the carpet or lowering the rent.
The success and profitability of an apartment building investment can often be determined by the quality of the management in place.