How to set rental rates for your properties

A small cottageDetermining how much to charge in rent for your rental units may seem like a daunting task. This is compounded by the fact that in most areas of Northeastern Ohio it is rare for rentals rentals on the MLS which means that that there is no public data for what properties ACTUALLY rent for. Here are a few tips to get your started.

  1. Check out the rent for comparable properties. This is an important one. If your rent is significantly lower than comparable properties, you may rent quickly, but you may also be losing potential money. If your rent is significantly higher than comparable properties, you may be losing out on potential tenants. When looking for comparable properties, you want to look at both size, amenities, and location.
    1. You can’t just compare your three-bedroom unit to all other three- bedroom units in the area. Location, even within the same city, matters. For example, Lorain, Ohio has 2 school systems; Lorain School system and Clearview School System. The rent on properties within the Clearview School System are higher because people place a higher value on Clearview schools than Lorain Schools.
    2. Size also matters, but you need to understand how much it matters. For example, investigate the difference in price between two and three bedroom units in the area of your rental. You may find some interesting trends. Maybe there is a shortage in three-bedroom apartments, so the difference between a two-bedroom and three-bedroom is significant.
    3. Amenities also make a difference. How close is your property from nearby schools and shopping area? Do you provide appliances? Is there in-unit or on-site laundry services? Is there a pool, tennis courts, playground, etc.?
    4. The type of property may also affect the rent. For example, a three-bedroom unit in a duplex is significantly different that a three-bedroom house. In most areas, rental houses can be rented at higher rates than apartments or multi-family homes. Even the type of multi-family home can make a difference. Side-by-side units tend to rent faster than up-and- down units.
  2. Network with other landlords in your area. Check your area for a landlord association. In Northern Ohio, we have the Lake Erie Landlords Association (LELA). This organization allows landlords the opportunity to network with other landlords. This is a valuable asset. You can talk to other landlords about their rental rates and how they determined them. We are proud members of LELA, which we feel provides us with an advantage on behalf of our landlords.
  3. Be Flexible. Being flexible is essential. There are some landlords, who would argue that you should never lower your rental rates, regardless of what is happening in the local economy. However, the local economy dictates the budgets of local tenants. If overall rents in the area for comparable units have dropped, you will only be hurting yourself by maintaining a higher rental rate. Being flexible will enable you to stay competitive. Likewise, if local rental rates go up, you would be shorting yourself by not also raising your rents.

We have done a great deal of research on competitive rental rates in areas all throughout
Northeast Ohio, and we use that information, as well as connections within LELA to help
our landlords set the most competitive rental rates.

About Realty Trust Services

Realty Trust Services is a licensed brokerage and property management company based out of Lorain County with a service area from Sandusky to Cleveland Heights to Medina. Their team includes: Agents, David Stevoff, Christopher Obrycki, Andrew Morris, Shanon Jones- Plas, Kari Taylor, Matthew Klein, Julie Musial, Leo Dombrowski and our other unlicensed team members including Steven Taylor, Bill Taylor, Greg Zadorozny, Kris Mrazik, Joyce Thompson, Matthew Harkins. For more information on Realty Trust Services and how they can help with your property call 440-220-7300.

Detecting Rental Scams: Tips on Protecting Yourself and Your Investments

When you rent from Realty Trust Services you will be able to meet us and see the property. We aren't going anywhere.

When you rent from Realty Trust Services you will be able to meet us and see the property. We aren’t going anywhere.

If you simply Google search “rental scams” you will get to read a plethora of articles on landlords or fake landlords scamming potential tenants. Unfortunately, landlords are often portrayed as the big bad wolf in the story. However, there are a multitude of people out there posing as potential or fake tenants working scams on unsuspected landlords.

As an experienced and highly educated property management company, we have learned what to watch out for, and we want to share with you a few red flags. These are the situations where you need to be extra cautious before agreeing to rent or handing over the keys to the property.

  • If the tenant is unable to meet in person. If someone contacts you to rent a unit over the phone or via email, insist on meeting in person. Not having to show up is the easiest way to scam someone.
  • Wanting to rent the unit without seeing it first. If someone approaches you to rent a unit they have never seen before, this is a red flag. It could be an outright scam, or the individual may be involved in illegal activity, and the location of the rental unit is more important that the look or size of the rental unit.
  • Sending or providing a check for more than the needed amount. Then stating the written amount was a mistake and asking for the difference back. This is actually a common scam. The check is bad, but you won’t discover that until after you’ve returned the difference. If this happens, return the original check and ask them to write a new one.
  • Being overly rushed. Short of experiencing a house fire, there is no legitimate reason someone would need to move in within days. If they are rushing the rental process too much, there is a solid chance they are trying to get in to the place before you find out some truth about them. Do not rent a placed until you have completed your normal background checks, which should include a criminal check.
  • If a potential tenant offers to pay several months in advance with cash. Although this might seem like a great deal, you have to be careful. Make sure you do your criminal check and get the results before renting.

These are a handful of the red flags you need to watch for when renting your properties. Being thorough, running background checks, and not being lured into an overly good deal or opportunity are the best ways to protect yourself and your property. We consistently work to protect our landlords from potential scams. Every tenant we rent too
has been fully vetted by our experienced staff, and we never rush into rental agreements.

About Realty Trust Services

Realty Trust Services is a licensed brokerage and property management company based out of Lorain County with a service area from Sandusky to Cleveland Heights to Medina. Their team includes: Agents, David Stevoff, Christopher Obrycki, Andrew Morris, Shanon Jones- Plas, Kari Taylor, Matthew Klein, Julie Musial, Leo Dombrowski and our other unlicensed team members including Steven Taylor, Bill Taylor, Greg Zadorozny, Kris Mrazik, Joyce Thompson and Matthew Harkins. For more information on Realty Trust Services and how they can help with your property call 440-220-7300.

No spanking policy!

At Realty Trust Services we can promise you two things: 1) We won't get you into legal trouble with improper collections techniques 2) You won't be driven to using improper collections techniques

At Realty Trust Services we can promise you two things: 1) We won’t get you into legal trouble with improper collections techniques 2) You won’t be driven to using improper collections techniques

We regularly receive questions from landlords regarding why they should spend the money on a management company. What benefits will they receive from the deal? Let me start by saying the benefits of using a management company are both monetary and intrinsic. We save landlords money, we enable them to earn more money, and we provide peace of mind, which, for most, is priceless.

There was recently a story in the news about a landlord, who had clearly reached the end of his rope, and would have benefited greatly by our services. On January 22, 2012, Ron Kronenberger, a landlord in southern Ohio, whipped the bare butt of one of his tenants. The tenant had fallen behind on his rent, and Mr Kronenberger had reached his limit trying to deal with this particular tenant.

At first, the story sounds humorous…almost unreal. I read it thinking, there has to be more to the story; a grown man didn’t really spank another grown man. There really isn’t more to the story; that is exactly what happened. From here, you might be thinking that guy is crazy, he should go to jail for assault, etc.

As of his March hearing, Mr. Kronenberger is not being charged for assault as long as he does not get in further legal trouble and he stays away from the former tenant. Although he has escaped legal punishment this time, what has this done to his reputation and his business? This story made the national news. He will forever be known as the landlord that spanked his tenant.

Clearly, Mr. Kronenberger felt he was being pushed beyond his limits, and he crossed the line. That does not happen with our landlords. Our landlords do not feel desperate, frustrated, angry, or on the verge of losing control. Our landlords are home enjoying a meal with their family while we’re busy getting their units rented and tracking down their money from wayward tenants.

There are very legal ways to get non-paying tenants out of your rental units. There are also perfectly legal ways to go after tenants and former tenants for money owed. We can help. We can make sure it doesn’t go so far that you have people living in your units rent free for months and months.

Finally, I can offer all our landlords a 100% guarantee that we have never and will never spank a tenant. We have a strict No Spanking policy here.

About Realty Trust Services

Realty Trust Services is a licensed brokerage and property management company based out of Lorain County with a service area from Sandusky to Cleveland Heights to Medina. Their team includes: Agents, David Stevoff, Christopher Obrycki, Andrew Morris, Shanon Jones- Plas, Kari Taylor, Matthew Klein, Julie Musial, Leo Dombrowski and our other unlicensed team members including Steven Taylor, Bill Taylor, Greg Zadorozny, Kris Mrazik, Joyce Thompson, Matthew Harkins and David Stevoff. For more information on Realty Trust Services and how they can help with your property call 440-220-7300.

Attention licensed agents: 3 Free Hours of CEU – Property Management Best Practices

How does it all work?

How does it all work?

To register go to https://propertymanagementoh.com/ceu

The following is the outline of some things we will cover:

PROPERTY MANAGEMENT BEST PRACTICES OUTLINE
I. Introduction – 15m – Why and when might the prospects and clients you are working with be in need of leasing and property management

II. Legality- 35m – I have a salespersons license. Can I manage property? What requires a license what doesn’t? etc. Review the OAR white paper.

III. The Business- 15m – Fees charged and potential income streams/ profit models and economies of scale.

IV. Technology- 10m – tablets, Prezi listing presentations, online showing scheduling, rental management software, IVR’s, SMS and voice broadcast notifications, email list building, social media, listing syndication, wide angle video tours, esignatures, online virtual assistants, google docs, video leasing presentations and more, websites, lead forms, instant contacts and more.

V. Leasing Best Practices – 50m
– Staging for lease
– Rental pricing
– Marketing techniques
– MLS Requirements
– Showing the property – different ways to do it
– Application and screening
– Negotiations
– Lease signing
– Client leasing reports
– Staying out of trouble with the OCRC
– Trouble shooting – when the property isn’t leasing

BREAK 10m

VI. Management and maintenance – 40m
– Receiving payments
– Payments out – utilities, property taxes, insurance plus
– Paying owners
– Dealing with all of the issues that pop up with a new tenant
– Different ways to accept payments
– Accounting
– Owner statements
– Managing difficult owners
– Accounts and trust accounts
– Reserves
– Inspections
– Managing calls and work orders
– Contractors

VII. Collection – 20m
– Dealing with utilities that tenant doesn’t pay
– Late fees
– 3 day notices
– Eviction
– 2nd cause
– Outside collection companies and attorneys

Adjourn

Turning around an apartment complex

Does your property need a turn around? Give us a call. We put the same creativity we put into marketing, into helping our clients find solutions.

Does your property need a turn around? Give us a call. We put the same creativity we put into marketing, into helping our clients find solutions.

We wanted to share with you a success story. Today we filled the last of a series of vacancies for the 333 Washington, an 18 unit apartment building in Elyria. When we took over management in October 2012, this building had a 50% occupancy and of those units several were under eviction.

There were a lot of repairs to be made, as the current management was not meeting the needs of the tenants. Screening had not been done properly and it had gained a very bad reputation. Advertising dollars were spent poorly. 6 months later this property is 100 percent occupied with only 1 eviction in process (not a tenant we put in). It wasn’t easy to turn this complex around.

The owner had a limited repair budget which we had to work with. The building had a bed bug infestation that took several months to get a handle on. There were difficult tenants we had to get rid of. We had to really dial in the marketing and find out what worked for that property.

For us this is a turnaround story, we are very proud of and we think that we could bring YOU the same results.

About Realty Trust Services

Realty Trust Services is a licensed brokerage and property management company based out of Lorain County with a service area from Sandusky to Cleveland Heights to Medina. Their team includes: Agents, Christopher Obrycki, Andrew Morris, Shanon Jones- Plas, Kari Taylor, Matthew Klein, Julie Musial and our other unlicensed team members including Steven Taylor, Bill Taylor, Greg Zadorozny, Kris Mrazik, Joyce Thomson, Matthew Harkins and David Stevoff. For more information on Realty Trust Services and how they can help with your property call 440-220-7300.

Why Do North Eastern Ohio Landlords Choose Property Management?

For some people being a landlord feels like being without oxygen at the bottom of the ocean. Whether you feel that way or just need a little help so you can do something else give us a call at 440-220-7300.

For some people being a landlord feels like being without oxygen at the bottom of the ocean. Whether you feel that way or just need a little help so you can do something else give us a call at 440-220-7300.

  1. They are not local. – Using a property manager is ideal for landlords that are not local. Although paperwork and rent can be collected long-distance, properties can not be properly maintained or monitored. Using a property manager allows you to have someone in the area keep an eye on your properties, be available for emergencies, meeting with tenants, utility workers, and more.
  2. They have a large number of properties – Keeping track of multiple properties can be time-consuming and sometimes overwhelming. We have a team of people who work together to take care of every aspect of our landlords’ properties. You don’t have to drive yourself crazy trying to oversee dozens of properties on your own. Additionally, we have our own showers, maintenance staff, office staff, and more. We do not need to hire out work that you may otherwise need to do.
  3. They don’t want a home office or the expanse of separate office – If you are a landlord, your tenants and perspective tenants need to be able to get a hold of you. You need somewhere you can meet people, go over paper work, and more. Your options are to have a home office or an outside office. A home office means never being able to “leave” work and tenants always knowing where to reach you. Having an outside office means the expense of running an office. Hiring a property manager will save you the aggravation of having to deal with an office, and our fees are less than you would need to pay to rent an office space.
  4. They have lives – Taking care of multiple properties is not a 40-hour a week job. Things happen at night, over weekends, even on holidays. Hiring a property manager, like us, to care for your properties means you can have your own life. You don’t need to be on call 24 hours a day 7 days a week.
  5. There are plenty of people who have become landlords through untraditional methods. They may have inherited the properties or felt obligated to pick them up when a close relative was going to default. Just because someone has properties does not mean they ever wanted to be a landlord. We can help.

WE have years of experience in all aspects of property maintenance.  There are many reasons why landlords may chose to use a property manager. Regardless of the why, we are the who. Choosing us to manage your properties will provide you with the peace of mind knowing everything is being taken care of by trained professionals.

About Realty Trust Services

Realty Trust Services is a licensed brokerage and property management company based out of Lorain County with a service area from Sandusky to Cleveland Heights to Medina. Their team includes: Agents, Christopher Obrycki, Andrew Morris, Shanon Jones- Plas, Kari Taylor, Matthew Klein, Julie Musial and our other unlicensed team members including Steven Taylor, Bill Taylor, Greg Zadorozny, Kris Mrazik, Joyce Thomson, Matthew Harkins and David Stevoff. For more information on Realty Trust Services and how they can help with your property call 440-220-7300.

Making the Most Possible with Section 8 Tenants

Is a mortgage paid by the government a gift? You decide.

Is a mortgage paid by the government a gift? You decide.

In case you are wondering what section 8 (see wikipedia) is, it refers to Section 8 of the Housing Act of 1937 (42 U.S.C. § 1437f).  This section governs housing subsidies and housing vouchers for tenants.

Locally one of the many things we do for our landlords is navigate the Section 8 system on their behalf to ensure them the many benefits of having Section 8 tenants rent their units. This saves our landlords time, money, and aggravation; while securing them consistent and guaranteed income. Before explaining all the amazing things we do, let me review why you want Section 8 tenants.

  • Section 8 pays a portion of their rent, so you are guaranteed money every month.
  • Section 8 tenants must initially sign a year lease, which guarantees you income for one year. If the tenant breaks their lease, they’ll lose their Section 8.
  • Section 8 follows a consistent pay schedule. You’ll know for the next twelve months exactly when you’ll be receiving your Section 8 check.
  • Section 8 screens potential tenants for a criminal background prior to approving their voucher. If a tenant comes to us through Section 8 we already know that person has no violent offenses, no drug offenses, and is not a sex offender.

The benefits of Section 8 are clear, which is why we work so hard for our landlords to get and keep Section 8 tenants. Here is a run down of what we go through for our landlords.

Once a perspective tenant is approved for a Section 8 there is a good amount of paperwork that needs to be done. We do that for our landlords. This paper work needs to be delivered to the Section 8 office during normal business hours, which we also do for our landlords.

Once the paperwork is approved, an inspection is scheduled. These inspections are scheduled by the Section 8 inspector based on their schedule; not ours. They always come during normal business hours, and you have to be there. Well…our landlords don’t have to be there. They go about their normal day, while we fit the inspections into our schedule. If the unit passes the inspection, you can meet with the perspective tenant to sign the lease.

If the unit does not pass inspection, we will receive a letter in the mail a few days after the inspection with the list of items that need repaired. We then make all the needed repairs, and call to schedule a new inspection. This part of the process is vitally important. From the time the initial paperwork is turned in, you only have 30 days to get an approved inspection. After that the tenant is issued a new voucher, and they can go look at other units.

Luckily for our landlords, we have been through so many Section 8 inspections that we know the drill by heart. They check everything; every light, every outlet, every screen. We know that and we are prepared. Once we secure the Section 8 tenant, we do everything we can to keep that tenant happy and living in the unit. We go through new inspections every year with the Section 8 inspector.

Section 8 is a valuable resource for landlords, and being able to quickly and effectively close deals with perspective Section 8 tenants is the key to making the most with Section 8. We know all the ins and outs of the system, and we use that knowledge to provide our landlords with security and full units.

When is section 8 not good? Are there reasons not to use section 8?

We have talked about section 8 benefits and how we can help place a section 8 tenant and take care of the administrative burden.  However section 8 is not for every house.  There are several issues with CMHA

  • Not all administrators are the same- so Lorain County Metropolitan Housing Authority (LMHA), Erie Metropolitan Housing Authority (EMHA) and Cuyahoga Metropolitan Housing Authority (CMHA) are all very much different in their time frames and requirements. EMHA and LMHA are reasonable in their practices and all though not perfect, we like to deal with them.  CMHA is usually a last resort because they lose documents, have much more stringent inspections, every part of their process is likely to break at any time delaying landlords in getting their money and sometimes they will delay months in moving in a tenant only to tell you later that you will get $200 less than you had required for monthly rental and you also need an additional $5,000 in repairs that you wouldn’t need to do just to get market rent.
  • As alluded to there is a process to get a tenant qualified for a unit. For LMHA we can get this done in several weeks and EMHA is similar. CMHA can take several months. All of these have their delays however from the time a tenant puts a deposit down even on a non section 8 unit, there is usually a several week period before they move in and start paying rent.
  • It is understandable that if the government is paying a tenants rent, they want to make sure the unit is safe. Inspections are required but they can make delays and then of course they may require repairs. Some of those repairs should be done anyways but sometimes they are silly requirements that no open market renter would require.
  • With EMHA and LMHA it is possible to pretty much know up front what we can get for section 8 rent. For CMHA they do not tell you till after the inspection and the evaluation at time seem what they will pay seems random.  Basically however section 8 programs dictate what rent they will pay.  For most properties we can know up front if it is even a possibility to place a section 8 tenant.

Many landlords worry that a section 8 tenant will destroy their property.  Generally the area a property is in dictates the tenants that apply just as much as whether it is section 8 or not. We can screen section 8 tenants the same as every other tenant and the section 8 programs themselves police destructive tenants and they can lose their voucher for for destroying properties they rent.

About Realty Trust Services
Realty Trust Services is a licensed brokerage and property management company in based out of Lorain County with a service area from Sandusky to Cleveland Heights to Medina. Their team includes: Agents, Christopher Obrycki, Andrew Morris, Shanon Jones- Plas, Kari Taylor, Matthew Klein, Julie Musial and our other unlicensed team members including Steven Taylor, Bill Taylor, Greg Zadorozny, Kris Mrazik, Joyce Thomson, Matthew Harkins and David Stevoff. For more information on Realty Trust Services and how they can help with your property call 440-220-7300.

Do you have the Ohio’s worst tenant?

Think you have Lorain, Sandusky or Cleveland Areas worst tenant? Tell us about it and maybe we can help.

If you have yet to watch the show World’s Worst Tenant, you really need to watch it. It is a combination of hysterical and insightful. During each episode the team sets out to help a landlord deal with a difficult tenant situation. They face a wide variety of crazy situations. I’ve seen shows dealing with drug dealers, vandalism, and even an old couple that refused to stop smoking in the unit despite the fact they were on oxygen. One show in particular blew my mind; it was discovered that the tenant was running an illegal sweat shop out of his garage. Every night around 2:00 AM a van showed up and dropped off between 20 and 30 illegal immigrants, who then went to work sewing clothes in this guy’s garage. It was insane.

The World’s Worst Tenant team goes to great lengths to get to the root of the problem. They stake out the properties, they interview tenants and neighbors, and they even conduct property searches. Once they discover the issue, they are in contact with the landlord and often the police to get the situation resolved. However, they are working from behind. By the time they are called in, the issue being addressed has already caused other problems and cost the landlord a great deal of money. The better approach would be to work to prevent problems as opposed to dealing with them after the fact.

After seeing several episodes, something became increasingly clear. The landlords involved were mostly out of town landlords, who were not able to have daily or even weekly contact with their properties and tenants. In addition to frustration, these landlords were losing mass amounts of money trying to resolve the issues, repairing damages, and losing other tenants. The other common thread that becomes increasingly obvious throughout the show is that if these landlords had attentive property managers acting on their behalf and looking after the properties; these situations could have been avoided. This is true for out of town landlords, as well as local landlords, who just want to have a life away from their properties.

Among other things this is what we provide our landlords. We find tenants and carefully screen them before allowing them to sign a lease. Additionally, we monitor all the properties carefully, so if problems do arise, they are dealt with quickly and effectively. We maintain awareness of what is happening at each and every property, so our landlords don’t have to. This saves our landlords a great deal of frustration and money. We take care of damages to the properties when they happen to prevent the damage from increasing. We also work closely with the city inspectors, Section 8 inspectors, and police, when necessary. We do everything we need to in order to provide our landlords with the best possible service.

About Realty Trust Services
Realty Trust Services is a licensed brokerage and property management company in based out of Lorain County with a service area from Sandusky to Cleveland Heights to Medina. Their team includes: Agents, Christopher Obrycki, Andrew Morris, Shanon Jones- Plas, Kari Taylor, Matthew Klein, Julie Musial and our other unlicensed team members including Steven Taylor, Bill Taylor, Greg Zadorozny, Kris Mrazek, Joyce Thomson, Matthew Harkins and David Stevoff. For more information on Realty Trust Services and how they can help with your property call 440-220-7300.

How to challenge my property taxes

Time for taxes also means it is time to challenge them. Unlike the IRS, with your local taxes you can and should challenge them.

As of January 1st, the Board of Revisions is accepting complaint applications on assessed home values. This is an important tool for landlords throughout Lorain County (and Northeastern Ohio) since assessed home values determine the amount of property taxes you will be responsible for. Property taxes are figured by multiplying the tax rate by the assessed value of the property. This is often referred to as the taxable value. With the down market throughout Lorain County, many landlords may feel the assessed values on their rentals, as well as their property taxes are too high. The Board of Revisions allows landlords the opportunity to appeal their assessed home value with the possibility of their properties being re-evaluated.

If you want to contest the assessed value of your property, you can do so by filing a Complaint Against the Valuation of Real Property on the DTE Form 1, which can be found on the Lorain County Auditor website ( http://rtsl.us/bnkh). This form must be filled out properly, signed and notarized. Filling anything out incorrectly, not signing it, or not getting it notarized will result in it being discarded and then you will have to start over. All complaints have to be filled between January 1st and March 31st. It is also important to note that you can only file one complaint during each three-year re-appraisal period. This is the general rule; there are a handful of exceptions to the three-year rule, which can also be found on the Lorain County auditor website.

Once your complaint is successfully filed with the auditor’s office, you will be notified of a hearing date. Most hearings last approximately 15 minutes and there will be three county officials or their representatives in the hearing. You will be given the opportunity to present your information and why you feel the property is valued too high.There are a wide variety of resources that can be used to support your complaint, such as a recent appraisal, photos of the property, estimates for needed repairs, as well as proof of recent sales on comparable properties. It is up to the property owner to prove their point.

A county appraiser also attends the hearing to provide information on the basis of the valuation. Additionally, if you are arguing for a reduction in value of more than $50,000, the local school board can also contest your complaint. You will not be given an answer right away. You will receive your answer in the mail following your hearing. Although the process is not overly complicated, it is important to be fully prepared and understand what you are getting into for the best chance of getting your assessed values lowered. For more information and strategies on successful re-evaluations, you can listen to our recorded seminar at http://rtsl.us/lowertaxes .

As successful and dedicated property managers, we do our best to help our landlords get an accurately assessed home value on all their properties. Property taxes are just one of the many expenses landlords face, so you want to make sure you are not unfairly being changed too much.

About Realty Trust Services
Realty Trust Services is a licensed brokerage and property management company in based out of Lorain County with a service area from Sandusky to Cleveland Heights to Medina. Their team includes: Agents, Christopher Obrycki, Andrew Morris, Shanon Jones- Plas, Kari Taylor, Matthew Klein and our other unlicensed team members including Steven Taylor, Bill Taylor, Greg Zadorozny, Kris Mrazek, Joyce Thomson, Matthew Harkins and David Stevoff. For more information on Realty Trust Services and how they can help with your property call 440-220-7300.

Didn’t want to diversify your investment portfolio into property rentals? Think again!

This side by side duplex (3 bedrooms per unit) was recently purchased by one of our clients in the city of Lorain for $13,000.00. His costs to get this home ready will likely total about $6000.00 for a total price to acquire and make ready for rent of $19,000. He will get about $900 in monthly rent from the units, If your factor in all of the costs including management, vacancy and maintenance you he will likely net around 600 a month. That is a potential 37% annual return with the initial investment potentially being returned in 2.63 years.

Risk allocation and diversification are terms bandied about quite a lot in the world of investments and retirement accounts. There are so many investments out there to choose from. Most successful professionals don’t see investing in local property rentals as viable, because of all the time, energy and potential drama involved. Also they don’t realize that it is often possible to invest in real estate rentals through their retirement account.

Realty Trust Services, property management division’s key focus is to “Make your property investment a passive investment(TM)”. Just as you get a monthly statement showing you how your 401k is doing, you will receive a statement showing you how your rental home is doing. You don’t deal with crazy tenant drama, leaky toilets or late night calls.

North Eastern Ohio property prices are some of the lowest they have ever been if you adjust for inflation. Also the ratio of property price to yearly rent income for properties on the market is as low as five to one in many areas. That means that some properties could pay back the original investment in as little as 5 years, and that is only the beginning. The market is cyclical and currently property values are at a historic low. While the incomes on these properties can justify the purchase regardless of if values will go up or down, many experts are calling high inflation inevitable, and in times of inflation real estate prices typically do well as investors will often take their money out of the financial markets and look for hard assets like real estate and precious metals to invest in.

Because Realty Trust Services manages more than 260 residential units, they are in a prime position to assist folks who are looking to diversify into real estate. Their agents are able identify properties that have the potential for excellent positive cash flow and there maintenance department can recondition the properties to achieve ideal rents. If your current retirement plan does not allow for the investment in real estate, they can introduce you to self directed IRA and 401k custodians that will allow you to roll your accounts over to a format that allows for a greater diversification, greater stability and potentially higher returns.
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About the author: Andrew Morris is a real estate broker with Realty Trust Services. Neither Andrew Morris nor any sales person, contractor or employee of Realty Trust Services is a licensed financial advisor. If you are interested in purchasing real estate for investment or in converting your current property portfolio into a passive investment, then call Andy Morris at (440) 220-7300 or email him at andy@PropertyManagementOH.com.

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