Portland Landlords Learned These 3 Surprising Things the Hard Way – Part 2
In our last post, we highlighted some surprising things that landlords in Portland had to learn the hard way and received quite a bit of confirming nods and feedback from clients, landlords, and even tenants. That’s why we’re continue this series by highlighting a few more items that landlords and real estate investors in Portland, OR should be aware of before renting out their properties.
4. Everyone Has a Story To Tell
As human beings, it’s natural to want to give people the benefit of the doubt and see the best in them. In day-to-day life, that can mean simply lending an ear and hearing someone out, offering a few compassionate words, or simply being present with the one before you.
When it comes to dealing with tenants on a regular basis over a 30-year period, however, it’s important to recognize that everyone has a story. When you’ve been a landlord long enough, you begin to see certain patterns. Often, tenants are living paycheck to paycheck, barely able to make ends meet. But that doesn’t mean that the contract they signed with you is any less valid.
One of the hardest parts of being a landlord is having to be firm with the terms of your lease agreement. Tenants will come to you with the deepest and darkest skeletons in their closet hoping to build an emotional bond with you, so they can pay their rent late or have certain fees waved. It’s always up to your discernment how each scenario is handled, but equally important to make sure you’re within the legal bounds that have been agreed to.
Many of our clients start off giving all of their tenants the benefit of the doubt, only to realize that when you give an inch, often times, people will take a mile. When rent comes in late month after month, it’s hard to remain the “nice guy.” Afterall, they aren’t being very nice to you by breaking their agreement.
At InterWest Properties, we know how awkward moments like this can be and it’s why we’ve created so many systems for our clients to make sure that the terms in every single rental agreement are followed to the T. If you’re having trouble standing firm with a tenant full of stories, we’d love to offer you an ear and advice on how we’ve been able to curb such problem tenants and get them back on track so that everybody wins.
5. Regular Maintenance Helps Prevent Massive Emergency Maintenance Bills
As a landlord in Portland, you know that there will be certain on-going expenses related to the upkeep of your property. But it can come as quite a shock when a tenant calls in the middle of some summer night and tells you the air conditioning system has gone caput, or a water heater exploded.
Having a plan of action for regular maintenance on each of your properties can help you identify problem areas proactively. It also means that the integrity of your property is maintained, costing you less money in the long-run.
A great rental investment is an asset and just like the farmer and his cows, they must be kept healthy and well-maintained for them to keep producing profitable goods. At InterWest, we put together a maintenance program as part of your rental property business plan that helps you stay in the know about upcoming repairs. We’ll advise you on the amount of money you should have on reserve, as well, so you’re never caught in a financial bind with tenants screaming in your ears.
Regular maintenance reviews also allow you and your team to maintain a strong relationship with tenants and this can become incredibly beneficial when it comes to future issues or negotiations around the property.
6. A Great Property Management Company in Portland Is In Your Budget
It’s easy to want to save as much money as you can when it comes to your rental investments and management of them. As an owner of rental units in Portland, faulty logic can point you to saying, “I can’t really afford a property manager, so I’ll just do it myself.” The reality of the situation is often much different, though.
Making a quick repair here and there may seem like no big deal, but over time the phone calls that come in about rent payments, late fees, neighborhood happenings, maintenance requests, police reports, domestic disturbances, and more can become daunting, quickly.
As a smart real estate investor, one of the best things you can do is offload many of the landlord responsibilities to a competent property management company in Portland. Your time is valuable and little things that seemingly only take 5 or 10 minutes, here and there, have a way of stopping the momentum of your life and taking their toll.
Hiring a good property management company in Portland allows you to focus on the vision and strategy for your growing real estate portfolio. The more properties you include in your portfolio, the more sense it makes to have a property manager tending to them all. Many of our clients at InterWest are amazed at how affordable management for their investment properties has been and the amount of value they have received in return, not to mention time they’ve been able to put to better use.
If you’re a landlord in Portland and curious about the cost of having someone take over the day-to-day duties of managing your real estate portfolio, we’d love to jump on a phone call with you.