RENT Magazine discusses the latest investing, legal, screening, and tech trends in the rental industry. Contributors include attorneys, tax experts, investors, and real estate influencers. Stay in the know and read RENT Magazine for FREE.
I S S U E N O . 3
EXCHANGE GRIEF 4 AVOID THE STAGES OF 1031
AU T UMN 2 0 2 1
SMART CELLULAR COVERAGE SOLUTIONS ADD A NEW DIMENSION TO APARTMENT SAFETY PAGE 51
DOWNTOWN RENTS HAVE RISEN: PAGE 23 Q3 RATE CHANGES
DANIEL CUNNINGHAM I N T E R V I E W W I T H
PAGE 81 SIGNING A GREAT TENANT IS MORE THAN JUST LUCK
LEONARDO 247 CEO APARTMENT ACADEMY PODCAST HOST PAGE 33
ESSENTIAL ACCOUNTING TIPS FOR RENTAL PROPERTY OWNERS 4 PAGE 7
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THE OFFICIAL PUBLICATION OF THE AMERICAN APARTMENT OWNERS ASSOCIATION
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TEAM Editor in Chief Robbie Cronrod Staff Editor Nancy Abrams Marketing Manager Alexandra Alvarado Designer Vera Gavrilova Advertising Kit Baker-Carr Contributors
07 10 14 19 23 26
FOUR ESSENTIAL ACCOUNTING TIPS FOR RENTAL PROPERTY OWNERS HOW TO PROTECT YOUR APARTMENTS FROM THE LEADING CAUSE OF FIRES: COOKING FIRES AVOID THE FOUR STAGES OF 1031 EXCHANGE GRIEF: SELECT A DST 1031 EXPERT USING SELF-GUIDED TOURS TO HELP WITH TODAY’S NEW LEASING CHALLENGES DOWNTOWN RENTS HAVE RISEN: Q3 RATE CHANGES
Jordan Cooper Shara Limoges
Matthew McFarland Georgianna W. Oliver The Rentometer Team David Spooner Steve Levin Richard D. Gann, JD Mark Smolen Dean Richmond Kathelene Williams, Esq. Matthew Sloley Lauren Lieb Bradley Barth, Esq. Jen and Stacy Conkey Nancy Abrams
CELEBRITIES ON THE MOVE
28 HOW TO AUTOMATE YOUR
MANAGEMENT WITH PROPERTY MANAGEMENT SOFTWARE
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RETIRE from your REAL ESTATE
Are you ready to leave the burdens of tenants, trash and toilets behind? 1031 Exchange your rental property for potentially 100% passive income! To learn more call (800) 445-5908 Or visit us at www.1031capitalsolutions.com
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STATE OF THE RENTAL INDUSTRY WITH DANIEL CUNNINGHAM EFFICIENTLY SOURCING BUILDING MATERIALS FOR MULTIFAMILY CONSTRUCTION AND MIXED-USE DEVELOPMENT CALIFORNIA AND THE SOUTHWEST: TRENDS AFFECTING RENTAL HOUSING INVESTMENT WHY QUICKBOOKS IS BEST FOR SERVICE COMPANIES THAT MANAGE PROPERTY SMART CELLULAR COVERAGE SOLUTIONS ADD A NEW DIMENSION TO APARTMENT SAFETY MAINTENANCE PROFESSIONALS AND FAIR HOUSING TRAINING - A MUST SKYROCKETING MATERIALS COSTS CREATING HAVOC FOR NEW CONSTRUCTION HOW TO PROTECT YOUR PROPERTY FROM INCREASINGLY EXTREME WEATHER EVENTS ARE YOUR INVESTMENT PROPERTIES PROTECTED OR EXPOSED? HOW TO TRANSITION FROM SINGLE FAMILY TO MULTIFAMILY INVESTMENTS SIGNING A GREAT TENANT IS MORE THAN JUST LUCK
This issue of RENT presents proven methods of safeguarding your assets while adapting to a changing industry. We discuss property management concerns that include self- guided tours, fair housing training, and how to sign a great tenant. AAOA’s economic experts examine expansion of your investments, maneuvering 1031 exchanges, bookkeeping efficiency, skyrocketing materials costs, and the benefits of LLCs. You’ll learn about safety issues, including the prevention of kitchen fires, coping with extreme weather events and the safety benefits of offering smart cellular coverage. Our cover story features Daniel Cunningham, founder and CEO of Leonardo247. The operations and maintenance platform is now among the fastest-growing privately held companies in the U.S. and counts half of the nation’s ten largest multifamily property owners and operators as clients. As 2021 draws to a close, take time to focus on how to better protect your businesses and update your systems in the coming year. We wish you a happy holiday season and a very prosperous new year.
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FOUR ESSENTIAL ACCOUNTING TIPS FOR RENTAL PROPERTY OWNERS As the owner of rental property, you may find yourself busy juggling a number of tasks. With handling service requests, ensuring your units stay occupied, communicating with tenants, and growing your rental portfolio, it can be overwhelming. When there’s so much happening, it might seem easier to push the accounting aside for a later date. You may procrastinate because you dread sorting out the mess and manual admin – bank statements to comb through, outstanding payments to chase, and receipts to find before you’re able to sort out your taxes or review your financial position. But it doesn’t have to be that way! We’ve put together four tips that can help you establish good accounting practices so that you can get the most out of your rental portfolio with less stress. FOUR ACCOUNTING TIPS FOR RENTAL PROPERTY OWNERS 1. CATEGORIZE YOUR FINANCES
portfolio and when tax time comes around, you can avoid the tax prep scramble. 2. STREAMLINE RENT COLLECTION Keeping rent payments coming in regularly and reliably enables you to forecast your income and plan more easily when it comes to paying bills or investing in maintenance and renovations. However, some property owners still opt to use the old-fashioned method of checks for receiving rent. This can result in delays and uncertainty about how much cash you have on hand and can also be a poor experience for your tenants, some of whom may seldom, if ever, write checks.
Rental property finances can get complicated fast. Whether you have just one rental property or manage a portfolio, there are security deposits, property expenses, rent payments, and interest to keep track of. One way to prevent things getting out of hand is to categorize your finances as soon as they come in. You can do this manually or you can find accounting software, such as Xero, that is designed to do most of the work for you. Not only does this help reduce manual admin, it means you have data at your fingertips to see the return on investment across your property
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In today’s world, people may expect to be able to pay the rent in the same convenient ways they use to pay for many other expenses and purchases. Online payment methods are one way to make life easier for your tenants and help maintain a great relationship with them. And happy tenants may well become stable, long-term tenants! You can streamline your rent collection by offering online payment methods, including ACH debits. Not only can ACH debit help make your cash flow more reliable, but it can also make the monthly chore of paying rent much less of a hassle for your tenants. Check out this guide for more information on how you can streamline rent collection. 3. USE TECHNOLOGY TO AUTOMATE ROUTINE TASKS AND CONSOLIDATE IMPORTANT INFORMATION TO A SINGLE SOURCE Imagine having all your tenants’ information in one place instead of duplicating details in different places or systems for different purposes. There are options beyond complicated spreadsheets to keep track of different expenses, tenants and properties! Finding the right tools and technology to help you consolidate information to a single source and automate routine tasks can not only help you reduce manual admin, it can also help free up time to focus on the things that you feel matter most to your property business, such as increasing profitability and efficiency, or simply gaining the flexibility you’ve always wanted. Even better, if you work with apps that are fully integrated to your accounting software, you can avoid double data entry.
For example, property management apps that integrate with accounting software like Xero help you see tenant data and financial accounts through a flow of information between platforms. Services such as Hubdoc, which comes as part and parcel of Xero, help to streamline expense management. You may also benefit from automatic feeds of transactions from your bank into your accounting software and automated bank reconciliation. Xero is designed to match transactions for you so all you need to do is quickly review and accept them. It makes it easy to see what rent is due, what bills need to be paid, and to get any reports you might need so you can more easily stay on top of your cash flow. 4. GET HELP A qualified accountant or bookkeeper can be a valuable asset for any property business and can keep the owner informed of any and all tax savings. But they can also assist with much more than just your tax returns! They can help you more efficiently and effectively manage your finances, analyze your investments and profitability, or give advice about growing your portfolio and using connected apps. The Xero advisor directory can help you find an accountant or bookkeeper to suit your needs. As you can see, getting on top of your finances and establishing good accounting practices doesn’t have to be hard! Just one step at a time, with help from an accountant or bookkeeper when needed, can make your life as a rental property owner simpler and more carefree.
JORDAN COOPER Director of Verticals Xero
Jordan Cooper’s early career as an accountant specializing in property management and real estate instilled him with a passion and commitment to drive efficiency through technology. In his current role as Director of Verticals at Xero, Cooper works to identify new and innovative ways to better serve the accounting needs of customers within specific industries, including real estate and rental property management. Xero is a global provider of accounting software whose products and solutions can help rental property owners and managers to digitally track moving parts of their businesses.
Disclaimer: Xero is an accounting software provider, not a professional services firm. We believe the information given here could be useful in running a small business, but this should not be seen as a substitute for professional advice.
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HOW TO PROTECT YOUR APARTMENTS FROM THE LEADING CAUSE OF FIRES: COOKING FIRES Preventing apartment fires depends on the actions of every resident, but as the apartment building owner, the responsibility ultimately rests with you. Apartment fires can spread quickly if not suppressed immediately, and they account for 10 percent of residential fire-related deaths in the U.S. Cooking is the leading cause of apartment fires, and those fires usually are the result of an unattended stove. That’s why fire extinguishers don’t always work, but an automatic kitchen fire suppression system, such as StoveTop FireStop, does. REDUCING THE RISK OF FIRE THERE ARE MANY WAYS THAT YOU CAN REDUCE THE RISK OF FIRES WITHIN YOUR BUILDING:
Regularly inspect the electrical lines to look for damaged or frayed lines that could create sparks and cause a flame. It’s also important to remind tenants not to overload outlets with adapters or to use extension cords as a permanent solution - particularly under carpeting or rugs. Make sure fireplaces are cleaned out at least once every season to prevent the accumulation of potentially flammable chemicals.
Prohibit smoking in your building, and do not allow residents to grill on their balconies. Make sure you have a written policy on the use of candles, which includes keeping candle fixtures away from flammable materials, such as curtains and bedding. Inspect shrubbery around the building - especially during dry seasons - to make sure it isn’t dry, which makes it easier to catch fire.
Even when taking such precautions, the risk of fire still exists. That makes it critical to ensure that every apartment unit is properly equipped to help suppress fires when they break out.
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FIRE EXTINGUISHERS FOR APARTMENT BUILDINGS Fire extinguishers are an essential tool for fire preven- tion, and every apartment should have at least one. However, it’s just as important that residents know how to use them. Consider providing periodic training ses- sions for your tenants to review the proper way to use fire extinguishers. It’s also critical that apartments are equipped with the right type of fire extinguisher since different classes of extinguishers are used for different types of fires. The classes of fire extinguishers are:
UNDERSTANDING THE LIMITATIONS OF FIRE EXTINGUISHERS Even if you have the right fire extinguishers in the right locations in the apartment and residents are trained on how to use them, the safety of your building still relies on tenants being able to catch the fire while it is still contained, reach the extinguisher, and safely put out the fire. Almost three-fourths of all apartment fires start in the kitchen, and they’re most often the result of leaving a stove unattended, according to the National Fire Protection Association. In more than half of the cooking fires between 2013 and 2017, injuries occurred when people tried putting out the fire themselves. You can’t completely eliminate the threat of cooking fires, so the ability to control what happens once they break out is the next best thing. Using StoveTop FireStop provides a key element of protection because it reacts to fires and suppresses them before it’s too late. And, since 30 percent of people killed by cooking fires were asleep at the time, it ensures that the stove is being monitored - even if your tenants have forgotten they’ve left a burner on or left something cooking on the stove.
Effective for fires involving combustible objects such as wood and paper
Can be used on flammable liquids like grease, gasoline, and oil
Should only be used on electrical fires
Designed for use on flammable metals
Specifically for food products like cooking oils and animal fats
While a Class A fire extinguisher is great for fires in a home office, it won’t be effective in a kitchen fire, so another solution is to buy a multipurpose extinguisher. These are usually A-B, B-C, or A-B-C and help avoid confusion about where the device can be used.
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COOKING IS THE LEADING CAUSE OF APARTMENT FIRES, AND THOSE FIRES USUALLY ARE THE RESULT OF AN UNATTENDED STOVE.
HOW STOVETOP FIRESTOP WORKS Unlike fire extinguishers, which require someone nearby who knows how to operate them, StoveTop FireStop canisters are mounted above the stove’s burners, either under the microwave or beneath the range hood. When a fire occurs on the range below it, StoveTop FireStop is activated. If a direct, sustained flame makes contact with the fuse on the bottom of the canister, it drops a fine, dry powder over the flames to quickly and safely suppress the fire. It also releases a loud “pop” sound that alerts residents to the presence of a fire. Installing StoveTop FireStop provides an automatic solution to cooking fires, especially unattended cooking fires, and greatly increases safety in the kitchen. When you install StoveTop, you’re not just protecting the resident who inadvertently starts a kitchen fire. You are protecting every resident in your building.
SHARA LIMOGES Account Manager StoveTop FireStop firstname.lastname@example.org
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AVOID THE FOUR STAGES OF 1031 EXCHANGE GRIEF: SELECT A DST 1031 EXPERT Participating in a 1031 exchange can be challenging for many investors, which is why finding an experienced and knowledgeable professional is critical for anyone thinking about participating in a 1031 exchange.
Why a DST 1031 expert can help investors avoid major stress with the sale of real estate.
What are the most important things to look for when choosing a DST 1031 Advisory Firm?
What are the four stages of 1031 grief?
WHAT ARE THE FOUR STAGES OF 1031 GRIEF AND WHAT CAUSES THEM?
Confusion: To many real estate investors, 1031 exchanges are like a cloud of confusion
are all areas of a 1031 exchange that can trigger confusion in unprepared investors.
thorough due diligence. This creates a sense of fear. Depression : A deep feeling of gloom results 1031 exchange, the owner will be smacked with a huge tax event including federal capital gains tax, state capital gains tax, depreciation recapture tax, and the Medicare surtax, greatly reducing their net proceeds. from recognizing that without a successful
and mystery. Even worse, many times what they think they know or have been told is often inaccurate. Questions like “Can I trade a piece of personal property for the exchange?” or “Can I take proceeds from the sale of my property before I make a 1031 exchange?” can all be quite difficult for people to understand. Furthermore, timeframes, debt replacement, and property types
Fear: This is another common emotion that creeps into the minds of many 1031 exchange
investors. For one, they know there is a challenging timeline that is staring them in the face to identify a 1031 exchange property within 45 days and close on the property in 180 days. That’s not a lot of time to locate a property, arrange financing, and conduct
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WHAT TO LOOK FOR WHEN SEARCHING FOR A DST ADVISORY FIRM With these wide ranges of emotions as a backdrop, Kay Properties & Investments has put together a quick checklist of what real estate investors should look for when searching for an advisory firm that specializes in Delaware Statutory Trust 1031 exchanges. • Make sure you use a firm that is hyper-specialized in DST 1031 investments There are only a handful of truly specialized firms that deal with nothing but DST 1031 investment strategies. Many firms offer services like financial planning, insurance, mutual funds, stocks, bonds, etc., but these are considered generalists in the industry. A true DST specialist firm will have participated in billions of dollars of DST investments and be able to provide clients hundreds of different DST 1031 exchange portfolio options in order to satisfy their specific, unique needs. Ask how many DST 1031 deals the firm has successfully completed. KEY TAKEAWAY • Make sure you use a firm that has an entire team of DST 1031 professionals The DST 1031 market can be fraught with risk. Understanding how the concepts of debt replacement, lease structuring, diversifying real estate portfolios, etc. are relevant to any 1031 exchange is critical, and a true DST 1031 expert will be able to explain these and other terms in great detail.
Guilt: Many investors get caught between the close of their sale and the start of their 1031 countdown. It
is at this point they feel guilty that they didn’t consult with their real estate broker or other professional ahead of the sale closing date in order to get ahead of the curve. Also, guilt can derive from failing to successfully complete a 1031 exchange into income-producing properties because it will hurt not only the investor but also their family/heirs. Real estate investors can cope with this troublesome run of emotions by seeking the advice of a qualified DST 1031 firm that specializes in nothing but DST 1031 properties to help guide them across the often potentially treacherous waters of DST 1031 investing. “Firms Like Kay Properties are special because we do nothing but work in the DST space day in and day out. For many years, investors have chosen Kay Properties and Investments for our vast selection of DST opportunities, vigorous DST due diligence process, extensive expertise in real estate, and relentless dedication to customer service,” said Kay Properties & Investments founder and CEO, Dwight Kay.
Ask very specific questions and demand very specific answers. KEY TAKEAWAY
TO MANY REAL ESTATE INVESTORS, 1031 EXCHANGES ARE LIKE A CLOUD OF CONFUSION AND MYSTERY.
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• Make sure you use a firm that is very particular with their DST Properties While many DST 1031 firms use the entire list of on-market DST properties offered by sponsors, DST advisory firms that specialize in DST 1031 exchanges dismiss many of these properties because they just don’t live up to the established investment standards of a specialist firm. In fact, it is common for the majority of firms that don’t specialize in DST properties to include properties that are higher risk, overpriced, and have little historic performance data. Also highly specialized DST advisory firms perform their own due diligence so that their clients are able to consider the best performing assets with their CPA’s and lawyers. Ask where the advisory firm sources their properties for 1031 exchanges, and what type of due diligence they have performed on the properties. KEY TAKEAWAY • Make sure you use a firm that has access to off-market properties, all-cash properties, and leveraged properties. Like a lot of things in life, it is often better to have access to as wide an array of options as possible. DST 1031 specialist firms do thousands of deals a year and have insights and avenues other financial advisors or even real estate brokers don’t have. This is critical for the 1031 client because not every 1031 exchange requirement is the same. Like the proverbial snowflake model, each 1031 exchange scenario has different challenges and nuances. The breadth and depth of the 1031 portfolio can help clients create a customized DST 1031 investment direction that is completely designed for their specific needs. A good rule of thumb is to select a DST advisory firm that has at least 30-45 offering options at any given time. This also means having multiple debt structures as well. Because the IRS requires investors to replace the value of debt when making a 1031 exchange, a good DST 1031 advisory firm should have both properties with debt and properties that are available for all-cash/debt-free options. Ask if they have access to off-market, leveraged, and all-cash/debt-free properties available for a 1031 exchange. KEY TAKEAWAY
SELECT A DST ADVISORY FIRM THAT HAS AT LEAST 30-45 OFFERING OPTIONS.
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• Make sure you use a firm that has some of its own skin in the game Most people wouldn’t buy a car from a dealer who didn’t believe in the manufacturer he was representing. Nor would they hire a personal trainer who was 300 pounds overweight. Smart investors like working with DST 1031 advisory firms who invest their own money in the funds they are selling. This not only shows confidence in what they are advising other clients to invest in, it also allows the DST 1031 specialist to share advice based on actual personal experience. For many years, investors have chosen Kay Properties & Investments for our vast understanding of the nuances and rules surrounding Delaware Statutory Trust 1031 exchanges and extensive expertise in real estate fundamentals. However, the firm is also expert at helping real estate sellers cope with “The Four Stages of 1031 Grief.” Ask if they personally invest in the specific properties they are advising other people to invest in. KEY TAKEAWAY
Disclaimer: This material does not constitute an offer to sell nor a solicitation of an offer to buy any security. Such offers can be made only by the confidential Private Placement Memorandum (the “Memorandum”). Please read the entire Memorandum paying special attention to the risk section prior investing. IRC Section 1031, IRC Section 1033 and IRC Section 721 are complex tax codes therefore you should consult your tax or legal professional for details regarding your situation. There are material risks associated with investing in real estate securities including illiquidity, vacancies, general market conditions and competition, lack of operating history, interest rate risks, general risks of owning/operating commercial and multifamily properties, financing risks, potential adverse tax consequences, general economic risks, development risks and long hold periods. There is a risk of loss of the entire investment principal. Past performance is not a guarantee of future results. Potential cash flow, potential returns and potential appreciation are not guaranteed. Nothing contained on this website constitutes tax, legal, insurance or investment advice, nor does it constitute a solicitation or an offer to buy or sell any security or other financial instrument. Securities offered through Growth Capital Services, member FINRA, SIPC, Office of Supervisory Jurisdiction located at 2093 Philadelphia Pike Suite 4196 Claymont, DE 19703. NOTE: Past performance does not guarantee future results and DST investments may result in a complete loss of investor principal. This is an example of the experience of one of our clients and may not be representative of the experience of other clients. These clients were not compensated for their testimonials. Please speak with your attorney and CPA before considering an investment.
Matthew McFarland is vice president and DST 1031 specialist with Kay Properties & Investments, where he works out of the Kay Properties’ headquarters in Los Angeles, helping clients with their 1031 exchanges and direct investments. Prior to joining Kay Properties, Matt worked at a national commercial real estate tenant representation firm where he helped national firms find Class A and Class B space in commercial office, industrial, and flex spaces throughout Southern California. Since joining Kay Properties, Matt has participated in over 1,000 transactions and over $6 Billion worth of real estate. Matt works hand in hand with all the Kay Properties’’ Senior Vice Presidents, educating clients on what particular investments make sense for their situation. A graduate of the University of California, Los Angeles, Matt holds a Bachelor of Science in Physiological Science from the UCLA Department of Integrative Biology and Physiology.
MATTHEW MCFARLAND Vice President Kay Properties & Investments kpi1031.com
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SELF-GUIDED TOURS ARE NO LONGER AN EMERGING TECHNOLOGY - THEY ARE AN ESSENTIAL TECHNOLOGY.
USING SELF-GUIDED TOURS TO HELP WITH TODAY’S NEW LEASING CHALLENGES In our post-pandemic world, traditional ways of doing things have become obsolete, seemingly overnight. Operators need to find ways to manage their assets more efficiently and meet evolving renter preferences. Everyone will be looking for smarter and quicker ways to rent apartments, which presents its own set of challenges. HERE ARE THREE TIPS FOR HOW SELF-GUIDED TOURS CAN HELP SOLVE TODAY’S NEW LEASING CHALLENGES: CHALLENGE #1
TIP #1: Provide Self-Serve and Flexible Options Offering flexible touring options outside of standard business hours makes it easy for renters to tour when it is most convenient for them. But how do you start? Try a self-guided
easily find and choose their preference and schedule a tour. Set expectations for the tour and have a clearly defined tour path to easily access and locate buildings, amenities, and show units. On the leasing side, the self-guided tour process collects and integrates guest card data into CRM/lead management tools or property management systems. It also incorporates
actionable next steps for reviewing availability, pricing, or starting an online application while on the tour. A survey by Tour24 found that nearly 40 percent of self-guided tours are taken outside of standard business hours when leasing offices are closed. Self-guided tours are no longer an emerging technology – they are an essential technology. If you are not offering
Pandemic Renters’ Expectations Have Changed Today’s renters expect to have self-serve and flexible options. They want to tour when they want and not during the limited dates and times made available by communities. They expect a self-service solution and want to interact with as few people as possible to find their next home.
touring solution. Best practices for self-guided tours
include grouping all the touring options together so a renter can
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flexible touring solutions for renters, you are missing out on valuable prospects and losing leases. CHALLENGE #2 Management coordinating leasing coverage after hours, weekends, holidays Coordinating leasing coverage after hours and on weekends and holidays is tough enough. Now add in post-pandemic issues and it becomes a huge management challenge. Plus, these times are exactly when people want to tour apartments! If an agent is busy or the office is closed, it results in lost leads… and leases! TIP #2: Increase the Number of Tours Without Increasing Leasing Agent Headcount The use of technology solutions makes it possible to always have leasing coverage (after-hours, weekends, holidays) without trying to coordinate schedules. Using self-guided tours provides operators the tools to manage more effectively by increasing the number of tours without adding headcount. It also improves efficiencies for busy agents during the day who can now be freed up to focus on other priorities. Tour24 research found that
31 percent of future renters on self-guided tours commit to leasing immediately after touring. These renters credit their decision to having an opportunity to tour how they want. The high conversion ratios on self-guided tours lead to better ROI. Communities are now considering self-guided tours an operating expense and not a marketing expense. CHALLENGE #3 High Leasing Team Turnover and High Costs There is a high turnover rate for leasing agents. Going forward, it will be harder to attract agents and it will cost more. Communities are having to increase hourly wages and payroll budgets. Plus, with so much turnover and limited time for training, the quality and consistency of tour information is unknown, which could also be a potential risk for fair housing violations. TIP #3: Change the Leasing Process for Improved Efficiencies Let self-guided tours give the tours. Let leasing agents do what they do best. They can focus on other high priorities such as renewals, follow-ups, residents, and marketing. This saves
money by increasing the number of tours without increasing headcount. A self-guided tour provides high- quality, consistent information to every renter, which showcases the community optimally as well as helping with Fair Housing Act compliance. There is no training needed to start offering tours, and a community can even use the self-guided tour as a training tool to onboard the team about the community. You put your best foot forward every time. The tour itself may be contactless, but the renter still wants to feel connected. Provide curated tour content that guides the renter as if your finest leasing agent is by their side. Make it easy for renters to ask a question at any time and capture feedback along the way. Tour24’s data shows that whereas 31% are ready to lease right away, 60% are thinking about leasing. Real- time data collected during the tour helps the agent tailor the communication to the renter’s preferences and focus on a successful follow-up. Engagement with the renter throughout their leasing journey will maximize opportunities to close the lease.
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The Bottom Line People are looking for smarter and quicker ways to rent apartments, which presents leasing challenges: 1. Post-pandemic renters’ expectations have changed 2.Management coordinating leasing coverage after hours, weekends, holidays 3. High leasing team turnover Self-guided tours can help solve these leasing challenges: TIP #1: Provide Self-Serve and Flexible Options TIP #2: Increase the Number of Tours Without Increasing Headcount TIP #3: Change the Leasing Process for Improved Efficiencies Self-guided tours are becoming the preferred choice over in-person tours. Tour24 found that 78 percent of renters said they would rather take a self- guided tour than tour with a live agent. They want to do everything on their own terms and don’t like being pressured. Leasing automation is a must-have. We are not going back to old ways. Embracing these new technologies and processes will improve the customer experience, maximize efficiencies for all, decrease operating expenses and increase revenue. Self-guided tours can help you quickly start solving these new challenges.
TODAY’S RENTERS EXPECT TO HAVE SELF-SERVE AND FLEXIBLE OPTIONS.
Georgianna W. Oliver is the CEO and Founder of Tour24, the leading on-demand platform for self-guided tours. Tour24’s transformative technology and key industry integrations make it the most comprehensive solution today. With a relentless commitment to client success, Tour24 is an extension of your leasing team and delivers more tours, more service and ultimately more leases. Visit tour24now.com.
GEORGIANNA W. OLIVER CEO and Founder Tour24 tour24now.com
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The original and best-selling Automatic Cooking Fire Suppressor on the market!
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• Deploys automatically when the flame from a cooking fire comes in direct, sustained contact with the fuse
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BASED ON OUR ANALYSIS, RENTS ARE ON THE RISE IN DOWNTOWN METROS ACROSS THE COUNTRY.
DOWNTOWN RENTS HAVE RISEN: Q3 RATE CHANGES Covid uncertainty, eviction moratoria, and renters on the move. Are these factors fueling rent price changes in your markets? Here’s the data.
SUMMARY Since the start of the global pandemic, rent prices have changed across the U.S. To quantify the impact, we’ve inspected rent changes in ten metros where AAOA members reside. Below we present a summary analysis of our findings for these metros, comparing two-bedroom rent changes from June 2021 to September 2021.
Based on our analysis, rents are on the rise in downtown metros across the country. METHODOLOGY Our neighborhood analyses use a 3-month “Look Back” to establish an average baseline rent. The 6-month Look Back considers rent data on June 1, 2021 and September 1, 2021.
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ANALYSIS Our data and analysis of rent price changes between the end of the second quarter to the end of the third quarter of 2021 are presented in the table below:
As the table shows, two-bedroom rents for Downtown Las Vegas increased most amongst the compared metro neighborhoods up 21% or $274 since the second quarter of 2021. At the same time, two-bedroom rents for Downtown Chicago decreased by 7% or $192.
CONCLUSION As always, there are various factors that can influence local rental markets and it is important to do your research and consult multiple sources before making rental decisions. Analyze your rental addresses and neighborhoods today at rentometer.com.
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Add Mobile Payment to your Tenant Laundry! Eliminate the Need for Quarters! Improve tenant satisfaction and increase your revenues by keeping tenants on site for laundry, and not at the laundromat. Plus, reduce or eliminate the hassle of dealing with quarters. Even reduce vandalism risk! PayRange adds mobile payment to existing laundry machines in minutes, and no internet connection is required, the user’s smart phone enables payments. Get started for only $20 per washer or dryer then ongoing costs are about 3% per transaction. * No monthly fees, and installation of the PayRange BluKey device takes only a few minutes.
PayRange works with existing coin operated machines, no need to replace or remove existing payment systems.
Free PayRange App available for both iOS and Android devices allows for the use of multiple funding sources.
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*Terms and conditions apply. PayRange is a trademark of PayRange Inc. Patent 8856045andother Patents Pending. ©2021 PayRange Inc.
ON THE MOVE
Jeff Bezos Jeff Bezos recently purchased his fifth apartment at 212 Fifth Avenue in New York’s Flatiron District for $23 million, bringing his total investment in the building to $1.19 billion. The 109-year-old neo-gothic building overlooking Madison Square Park was built as an office building but was later converted to 48 apartments. Amenities include a doorman, concierge, fitness center, golf simulator, screening room, boardroom, game room, children’s playroom, a lounge and cold storage for fresh food deliveries.
It’s well known that Ellen DeGeneres loves to buy, renovate and sell real estate. Her latest project is a five-bedroom, four and a half-bath Beverly Hills pool home built in 1961 that she bought this summer for $8.5 million. The single-level, mid-century modern residence encompasses 4614 square feet in Hidden Valley Estates, a guard-gated community of just 33 homes located in the Beverly Hills Post Office area. It was built by renowned architect Robert Skinner and was restored by architect John Bertram.
After buying and listing three Los Angeles and Malibu homes since May 2021, Leonardo DiCaprio ended the summer by acquiring another Malibu home, this time in the ultra-exclusive community of Blue Dolphin Estates. (The small, gated enclave of just five residences is also home to Neil Diamond.) According to public records, DiCaprio’s oceanfront purchase was built in 2005 and includes four bedrooms and five baths in 3268 square feet. The price of the private transaction was $13.8 million.
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ON THE MOVE
Gloria Vanderbilt The 1931 Beekman Place apartment owned by the late Gloria Vanderbilt for nearly 25 years until her death in June 2019 has sold for an undisclosed price less than six weeks after being listed. Offered at $1.125 million, the three-bedroom, two-bath home reflected Vanderbilt’s love of art, design and family treasures but will require a great deal of updating. Containing 38 units, the 10-story co-op building, with its views of the East River, features an outdoor courtyard and a new fitness center.
A 6100+ multilevel home situated on 2.95 acres in Clearwater, Florida, has been sold by John Travolta. The waterfront residence, which was built in 1988 and includes five bedrooms and 5.5 baths, was originally listed at $4.65 million and sold in August 2021 for $4 million. Boasting unlimited views of the Bay, the home is located near Tampa and the global Scientology headquarters. Travolta owns another Florida home in Jumbolair Aviation Estates where he parks his planes outside his 9000 sq. ft. residence.
Cindy Crawford and Rande Gerber After about a year on the market, a 1959 single-story five bedroom, five and a half bath mid-century Beverly Hills home was sold by Cindy Crawford and Rande Gerber for $13.5 million. A true entertainer’s home, it features an open concept living space, sit-down wet bar, dramatic fireplace and a separate screening room. Bi-fold doors along the back of the home open to a spacious deck that surrounds a large pool and spa amid lush, mature landscaping.
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HOW TO AUTOMATE YOUR MANAGEMENT WITH PROPERTY MANAGEMENT SOFTWARE
It’s no secret that managing rental properties is time-consuming. You might be surprised to learn, however, how much time it takes to manage just one property. And with roughly 70 percent of landlords self-managing their rentals, the demand on time likely falls to you. Based on the industry standard, landlords spend 4 hours
quality property management software, the time spent on management is cut by about 50 percent. And the best management software reduces management time up to 70 percent depending on the amount of tasks you’re willing to automate. Bottom line, the more you automate with property management software, the more time — and money — you save. Below, we go over six of the primary processes landlords should consider automating using property management software.
managing one rental property each month. This is 48 hours per year for each property. Roughly the same amount of time is spent on leasing, finding a tenant, and turning over the rental property. Altogether, the time for management is about 96 hours per year, which is over 2 weeks. This number, of course, compounds with each additional property you manage. When you self-manage your rental properties, the cost of management is your own time and manpower. But with high-
ALL YOU HAVE TO DO IS SET THE RENT AMOUNT AND DUE DATE, AND PROPERTY MANAGEMENT SOFTWARE TAKES CARE OF THE REST FOR YOU.
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ADVERTISING PROPERTIES/LISTING SYNDICATION To find tenants and collect rent payments, landlords must effectively market their rental properties. The leading method of rental advertising is online listing sites. Creating listings, writing descriptions, and taking photos takes time. And in order to reach a wide pool of renters, landlords typically post their listings on multiple listing sites, which they then must monitor for engagement and performance. With each additional site you post your listings on, the time you spend advertising properties increases. The leading property management software platforms offer listing syndication. Rental listing syndication allows landlords to post their listings on many of the top listing sites at once. With syndication software, you don’t have to waste time picking which sites to target, tailoring your listings for each platform, and switching between sites to monitor your posts. In short, listing syndication dramatically reduces the time required to advertise your rentals and find tenants. SCREENING TENANTS Tenant screening is the only way to find high- quality renters. Thorough screening procedures include credit, criminal, and eviction history checks. It is difficult and time-consuming to find this information on your own and harder still to
find information that is reliable. Even some reliable tenant screening services take 1-3 days to collect the reports you need. The best property management software platforms offer instantaneous tenant screening services that provide all of the information you need in a matter of minutes. And because the process is handled completely online with applicants entering in their own information, tenant screening requires no additional time or effort from landlords. SIGNING LEASES Before tenants can move in and begin paying rent, they must first review and sign their lease. In order for a lease to be signed offline, landlords must coordinate their busy schedules so that they can meet with tenants, review the lease, and sign the document. And if a tenant is moving from out of state, this process can take weeks. With property management software, landlords are able to upload their lease agreements so that tenants can review and sign them on their own time. This way, you don’t have to move around your schedule and block out time to meet with tenants. Rather than taking days or weeks, lease signing can be completed in a matter of minutes
with no additional work. COLLECTING RENT
All successful rental businesses must efficiently and effectively collect rent payments. When tenants pay you directly, you must count their cash payments, write receipts, deposit checks,
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and manually update your books. To do it well, you must commit a serious amount of time to rent collection. Property management software handles all of the tasks associated with collecting rent for you. Tenants simply input their card or account information and make the payments. The software records every transaction for you, automatically creating reliable documentation of payments. What’s more, renters can set up recurring payments so they don’t have to remember to pay each month. And if a tenant does forget to pay, late fees will automatically apply to their account after your set a grace period. All you have to do is set the rent amount and due date, and property management software takes care of the rest for you. MANAGING MAINTENANCE Maintenance requests are inevitable. And the more tenants you manage, the more maintenance requests you’re likely to receive. The last thing you want is for an email or message to go unnoticed in your inbox and for the issue to worsen. At the same time, landlords are busy and have a lot of tasks to juggle. It’s easy for maintenance requests to get lost in the shuffle. The best property management software offers portals dedicated to maintenance management. Tenants are able to submit requests with descriptions, pictures, and even videos of the issue in question. Landlords are notified immediately and
can respond to tenants to let them know they’re aware of the problem and are working to resolve it. With all of your maintenance requests organized in one place, you don’t have to worry about constantly checking and rechecking your inbox, and you can make sure maintenance requests are resolved in a timely manner. TENANT COMMUNICATION The key to successful tenant-landlord relationships is effective communication. When tenants reach out to you with a question or issue, it’s important that you respond quickly. Unfortunately, it can be difficult to manage those channels of communication when they are scattered across platforms. With property management software, tenants can communicate with landlords on a dedicated messaging portal. This way, all of your messages are consolidated into one location and you can rest easy knowing you’re not inadvertently ignoring someone. What’s more, landlords often send out reminders and updates about payments, late fees, lease renewals, and more. Each message takes time to write out, and you have to be diligent about remembering to send them. Leading property management software platforms enable landlords to customize automated reminders to send out at key times. This not only saves you time, but it also helps you better manage your tenants.
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CONCLUSION Property management software is a growing industry with a value of $1.65 billion. There are dozens of platforms on the market, and many more are sure to follow. As such, choosing a software provider to work with can be challenging. There is cloud-based software (think Google Docs) and server software (think Microsoft Word). There are platforms designed for small to mid-sized landlords and some for commercial properties. Each platform offers varying features and services and are priced differently. There are platforms that are free, whereas others charge for monthly use. At Innago, we offer our cutting-edge software free of cost. We are designed for small to mid-sized landlords, but we also accommodate larger property managers. Our software is designed to meet the needs of residential, commercial, and student-housing properties. Innago provides all of the features you want — rent collection, lease signing, tenant communication, maintenance management, and more. What it comes down to is choosing a property management software company that meets the needs of your real estate business.
DAVID SPOONER Co-Founder Innago Property Management Software (513) 964-0172 email@example.com
Dave Spooner is a co-founder of Innago, a property management software designed to simplify life for small to mid-sized landlords. He has been involved in the real estate technology space since 2013, working to enhance the way landlords and tenants communicate. In addition to his expertise in content marketing, Dave utilizes his experience with management and entrepreneurship to help landlords achieve sustained success.
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