There are many different ways to manage the application process. If you ever look for a house on Craigslist, you’ll see there are a lot of different landlords with a lot of different styles. Some just want to run a credit report on Credit Karma, and others have more involved tests. Today, we’re talking about how we do it and what everyone needs to do. Everyone needs to adhere to fair housing laws. It’s also a good idea to make your written rental criteria available to each potential applicant. There are a few specific things we do at Austin Landmark. Read more
Something I hear a lot from landlords is: what kind of insurance do I need, and am I properly covered? These are good questions. One of the founders of our company came from an insurance background, and we set this company up to mitigate risk and do things the right way, especially with insurance. So, we know what we’re talking about when it comes to insurance and investment property. Read more
Property management is a real estate niche, just like lakefront property is a niche and luxury homes are a niche. I don’t spend my time trying to sell farms and ranches or oil leases or $10 million lakefront properties. I want to stay in my niche, which is property management. All of us at Austin Landmark are licensed Realtors, and most of us are landlords ourselves. We can buy and sell any real estate in Texas. Our specialty, however, is property management. We’re not trying to hustle sales. We come to the office every day working for you. Read more
Today, I have some advice for landlords who are frustrated because their property manager isn’t calling them back. Communication is important, and you hire a property manager so you know what’s going on with your property. Having a professional manager means you can do other things with your life and not worry about your property. Read more
Does a landlord have to change locks between tenants? Yes. If you don’t already know, you have to change your locks at your rental property between each occupant. This doesn’t mean just rekeying the locks between each tenant. If you have a short-term rental or you have a vacation house that you live in sometimes and rent out at other times, you need to change the locks every time someone new occupies the home. Read more
Rental property inspections or property surveys while tenants are in place are necessary and important, but it’s not always a good idea to have them done by property managers. I always advise people to be wary of any property manager who claims to personally be at the property more than once a year. I don’t want to say anyone’s lying to you, but property managers have a lot of things they need to be doing. Physically being at a property that doesn’t have any current red flags is not a priority. A home inspection is important and necessary, but often a lower priority when emergencies are going on. Read more
There is a lot going on in the Austin rental market, and today I am providing a market update. We’re also going to talk about how to navigate a challenging market. I have some statistics that I don’t want to bore you with, so I’ll give you the bottom line: we’re in a competitive market right now. It’s not oversaturated in all areas, but the supply is exceeding the demand in several areas. This is leading to above average lease times. Read more
According to a recent article in our local paper, the Austin American Statesman, the job rate in Austin and our surrounding cities was 3.3% in 2016. This is really great news but the article pointed out that this figure was off a tad from previous years. Payroll increased by 3.8% meaning that employees are earning more money. All of this bodes well for us investors in residential rentals as it means that our area continues to grow and attract both employers and employees who need housing. And since housing is still in short supply here, and since interest rates have increased and look as if they will continue to increase, coupled with the increased price of homes making saving for down payments more difficult, it looks like renting is the option for our new transplants. When you factor in that many people are “choosing” to rent vs. buying a home, such as retirees and minerals, this is driving the average rent price upwards.
Looks like the good times will continue to roll on for us – especially if you own Austin area rentals.
Rick Ebert / Austin, Texas / 26 March 17
Partnering with a professional property manager will help you convert your short term rental to a long term rental. Today, we’re talking about the process and sharing three tips to make it more efficient. Read more
Here in Texas, you do not have to allow pets in your property, and there is no limit on the deposit you can charge someone moving in with a pet. At Austin Landmark, we restrict size and breed when it comes to pets. Most of our properties do accept pets and we encourage landlords to accept pets unless there are circumstances like you’re terribly allergic to cats and you might move back into the property one day. Some natural hardwood floors are also very susceptible to dogs and cats. And, some landlords have had terrible experiences and don’t want pets. So there are times when we do say no to pets. Read more