Why You Should Treat Your Rental Property Like A Business

Managing your rental property may not be your primary job, but it is still a business and a source of extra income. It’s important to remain professional with your tenants, keep your finances intact, and perform a thorough tenant screening prior to renter move in.

In order to conduct good business, you need to comply with federal, state, and local laws. It’s important to make sure your business follows all necessary laws in order to maintain a positive reputation and avoid potential legal problems. Real estate and rental investments often come with regulations, so be sure to take the time to conduct research and understand all federal and state specific laws before plunging in.

It’s also important to protect yourself from potential accidents or liability claims: one way to do so is by purchasing landlord insurance. If an unfortunate situation arises, like a pipe bursts or theft occurs, landlord insurance can protect you from bearing the loss. This means you won’t have to pay thousands of dollars if a tenant should sue you.

Conducting good business also means preventing problems before they happen. The best way to avoid problems is to keep your unit and building in good condition.

Before renting to tenants, double check that your rental property is a safe place to live. It’s worthwhile to spend money to make sure everything is up-to-code and all utilities work. For example:

  • Test smoke and carbon monoxide detectors
  • Make sure all vents are free of buildup (debris, moisture, etc.)
  • Check internal and external pipes for combustion

Once you have tenants living in your unit, you should have a plan as to how you will fix dangerous problems immediately. For example, how will you fix the furnace if it breaks, or help a tenant who locks himself out? The best way to prepare for problems like these is to have a plumber, locksmith, and contractor on call.

Being professional, keeping your finances in mind, following your city and state’s laws, protecting yourself from liability, and preventing tenant problems are the best ways to manage a good rental property business.

How To Set The Right Rent Price

To set the right rent price, we recommend researching your market to learn what the fair market rent price is in your area. Pricing your rental at the rent price that makes sense in your location can mean the difference between vacancies and attracting good tenants so you can rent your property quickly. You can also use online applications such as Rentometer to help guide your rental rates.

As you set your rent price, you should keep in mind how it affects your financials. After all, rent payments are your main source of income on your rental property. To compare your rental income to your rental expenses, you should list your fixed and estimated expenses. Fixed expenses are your mortgage payment, property taxes, insurance fee, and HOA fees. Your variable expenses are utilities, repairs, and property improvements. By comparing income to expenses, it’s easier to see how rent price affects your monthly revenue.

There’s no point in setting the right rent price if you have tenants who don’t pay on time, which is why the next tip is critical.

Salt-Lake-City

2015 Salt Lake City Rental Market Forecast Investor’s Guide

Today, we’re talking about the rental market forecast for 2015 in the Salt Lake City valley. Anyone who lives in the area simply needs to look around and it’s easy to notice all of the cranes. Those cranes are constructing a number of multi-unit buildings. That’s good if you’re looking for a rental but not so good if you own rentals.

Multi-Unit Landlords

Ultimately, the additional inventory that this new construction produces might have the potential to drive down the price you can get on the units in your own building. Investors need to take that into account. If you have a smaller building with 10 or 12 units, make sure you concentrate on making your building appealing to potential tenants. Take good care of the property’s exterior and make sure the inside is updated and looks good. When you have a vacant unit, you’re going to have some competition for tenants. Make sure people will want to live in your property. Keep it well maintained and provide a lot of amenities such as a playground or a pool.

Single Family Homes

In the single family market, we don’t anticipate seeing any big changes throughout 2015. In Salt Lake City, there is always a strong demand for single family houses, especially those that are in good shape. Take care of the inside of the home, and when it’s vacant you’ll be able to rent it out at a good price without a problem.

This is a brief overview of this year’s rental market. If you’d like some more in depth analysis, please contact us at Advanced Solutions Property Management, and we’d be happy to tell you more.

How Much Rent Can I Get for My Rental?

Our topic today is rent levels and what you can expect to get for your rental property in Salt Lake City. This is important information for investors and owners to have before they buy and before they list a property on the rental market.

Location

Rental prices are just like any other real estate or commercial business on the street – location matters. When a property owner calls me and asks how much they can charge for rent, the first question I ask is about the property’s location. It will have a huge impact on how you price your rental.

Size

Next, your price will depend on how many bedrooms you have. The number of bathrooms is also important, but tenants are going to look for enough bedrooms to fit their families. Square footage and bedrooms are almost as important as location.

Condition

Finally, the condition of the property affects how much you can charge in rent. Tenants are going to look for clean, functional kitchens and they’ll expect to see a few updates. As a house gets older, there’s a lot of wear and tear that it incurs. That drives your rent down. Many owners don’t like to spend money making updates and improvements to the property, but it’s worth it in the long term. A house that looks worn and old is going to rent for a lot less than a house that’s modern and clean. If you don’t upgrade from time to time, you’ll lose rental income.

How Much Rent can I get for My Salt Lake City Rental


Take a look at what your neighbors are charging for rent. If you’re getting less than they are for a property that’s the same size and in the same location, it’s because of the home’s condition, and you need to put some money into it.

If you want to talk about what you can expect for your particular property, please contact us at Advanced Solutions Property Management and we’d be happy to tell you more about current rent levels in your area.

What To Expect With Maintenance Costs Related To Property Rentals

Today, we are talking about maintenance costs related to property rentals. When owners ask what to expect, we always recommend they plan on five to 10 percent of their annual rental income going towards maintenance. This usually covers scheduled maintenance as well as unscheduled maintenance.

Property Age

Obviously, the newer your property, the less you have to worry about when it comes to maintenance expenses. Older properties are likely to need more frequent repairs.

Scheduled Maintenance

It’s very important to take care of preventative maintenance items. You don’t want to put off any regularly scheduled maintenance. Take care of changing the air filters regularly, repaint the walls when it’s necessary and have all of your systems serviced annually. This is especially important with your major systems such as the HVAC and plumbing. That’s where your biggest costs are found, so if those things stay in good shape, you’ll save money. But if you let those things go, the problems just get larger and more expensive over time. You’ll also have a harder time renting the property, so everything snowballs. Make your scheduled repairs and replacements on time.

Vendor Relationships

Property managers will have access to reliable maintenance personnel and highly qualified vendors they can trust. It’s a huge resource to have this pool of people that you can rely on to do good work at your property. They will give you an honest estimate and provide excellent work. This is a great example of why you should use a professional property manager. When you’re managing your own property, the contractors you use often come and go. Property managers develop relationships and that ends up benefitting you and your property.

If you have any questions about maintenance and how to prepare for their costs, please contact us at Advanced Solutions Property Management.

What is the Cost of Property Management?

Many landlords want to know how much it costs to hire a professional property manager in the Salt Lake City area. Generally, property management costs will run between eight and 10 percent of your monthly rental receipts. That means if you’re charging $1,000 in rent for your property, the cost of a good manager will be about $100.

Outside of the general management is the leasing process. Some property managers will charge an additional fee, which is called a leasing fee. That’s an upfront fee that you pay in order to get a tenant placed in your property. At ASPM, we don’t charge a leasing fee. We don’t think it’s fair that property owners would pay a professional to put a bad tenant in place and then have to evict the bad tenant and get paid again to put another tenant in place. Leasing fees seem counterproductive to us, so we don’t charge them to our owners. However, many companies do charge those fees, so make sure you’re comfortable paying them and be prepared for that extra cost.

As we always tell our owners, the cost of professional property management in Salt Lake City will be far outweighed by the increase in income and the decrease in vacancy over time. Really, you hire a property manager for the same reasons you hire a professional accountant or lawyer. They know the industry and they can help you increase your overall income. Don’t spend too much time worrying about what you’re going to pay in management fees every month. Instead, look at your bottom line and what you’ll get in return for what you’re paying.

Professional investors never manage their own properties. They turn them over to property managers because they know that’s how they’ll increase their rental income and the return on their investment.

If you have any questions about the fee structures for property managers, please contact us at Advanced Solutions Property Management.