The Indianapolis Landlord's Guide to the SCRA

By Devon L. Hicks on Aug 19, 2018 10:00:00 AM

In the landlording business, there’s nothing quite as exciting as filling a vacant unit. When that 1, 2, or 3 year Lease gets signed, you sigh in relief at the thought of guaranteed revenue coming in for the next 12+ months, right?

That’s probably why it’s equally, if not more disheartening when you find out that your Tenant wants to break their Lease. Suddenly, you don’t have that security and frustration tends to take over.

I think we can all agree, that our first instinct in this situation is to fight back. Raise your hand if you’ve ever said or thought something along the lines of…"I don’t care what the reason is, they signed a contract!"

Unfortunately for us Landlords and Property Managers, Leases aren’t always the end all, be all.

In previous blogs, we’ve discussed several scenarios where Tenants may have the right to legally and freely break their Lease agreement, such as domestic violence disputes or when a Landlord fails to perform certain obligations.

Well, not to be the bearer of more bad news, but there’s yet another scenario that allows your Tenant to get out of a Lease without penalty, and it’s thanks to a little piece of legislation called the Servicemembers Civil Relief Act or the SCRA.

This is a very complex, and important law for you to be aware of. Since it’s Federal, it will affect you wherever you own rental properties in the United States.  

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Tales from an Indianapolis Property Management Company: Renting in a Rent Restricted HOA

By Jeremy Tallman on Aug 12, 2018 10:00:00 AM

Like most property managers in larger cities, we manage a lot of homes in the suburbs.

You know, those idyllic settings several miles from the city center, where young families congregate in mass.

Areas full of chain restaurants, churches and strip malls.

Managing homes in Indianapolis ‘Burbs is great. The homes are usually newer and, because of generally strong school systems, always have a large Tenant base.

One caveat about most suburban areas, however, is the presence of Homeowner Associations (HOAs).

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How Do Constructive Evictions Work in Indianapolis?

By Devon L. Hicks on Aug 5, 2018 10:00:00 AM

Oftentimes, we think of Lease Agreements as a formalized list of Tenant requirements.

When is rent due?

What are the Tenant’s maintenance responsibilities?

When is the Tenant required to provide a notice to vacate?

Obviously, when a Tenant enters into a Lease Agreement, you expect them to abide by the provisions stated in the Lease.

And if they fail to honor those obligations, you, as a Landlord, have definite rights to seek damages.  

But here’s something that I think Landlords sometimes overlook…

When you enter into a Landlord-Tenant relationship, not only does the Tenant have obligations, but you do as well.

Yes, you, as a Landlord, have responsibilities.

Even if those responsibilities aren’t explicitly mentioned in the Lease.  

Just as you can evict a Tenant for violating the Lease, you can indirectly and inadvertently  “evict” a Tenant by not providing adequate or safe housing.

In real estate law, this is called a Constructive Eviction and it’s much, much worse for Landlords than a regular eviction.  

So, let’s dig into this a little bit.

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Aggressive Dog Breeds vs. Insurance: What Indianapolis Landlords Need to Know

By Devon L. Hicks on Jul 29, 2018 10:00:00 AM

I want to start out by saying that we, as a company, LOVE dogs.

Almost every one of our staff members has at least one furry friend and from a business standpoint, we encourage property Owners to allow pets in their rentals.

In our experience, the pros of having a pet friendly unit far outweigh the cons.

However, ‘pet friendly’ shouldn’t equate to any and all animals welcome.

Unfortunately, there are certain dog breeds that have garnered an unfavorable reputation and, in turn, have become too much of a liability for insurance companies to protect and, therefore, Landlords to accept. 

As unfair as it may seem to stereotype entire breeds, insurance companies are supposed to evaluate the risk of an incident happening, and they often feel that the presence of certain dog breeds on a homeowner's property boosts that risk.

Certain dogs simply pose a higher risk of harming someone more than others, so to many, it makes sense to ban those breeds from coverage.

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How Should I Handle a Domestic Violence Dispute in My Indianapolis Rental Property?

By Devon L. Hicks on Jul 22, 2018 10:00:00 AM

Domestic violence probably isn’t one of the first things that comes to mind when you think of Landlord responsibilities.

It may not even come to mind at all.

But the fact is, that 1 in 3 women and 1 in 4 men in the United States have experienced some form of domestic violence within their lifetime.  While these are disturbing statistics, they reveal how critical it is that Landlords and Property Managers understand their local laws, both to help protect Tenants and to avoid unwittingly breaking Landlord-Tenant laws.

So, if you haven’t guessed already, we’re going to take some time to discuss an Indianapolis Landlord’s obligations in a domestic violence situation.

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Indianapolis Property Management Update: Rental Statistics Q2, 2018

By Jeremy Tallman on Jul 15, 2018 10:00:00 AM

Updated, fresh from the oven, Indianapolis rental statistics are in for Second Quarter, 2018.

Mostly, things were steady, but a couple of interesting numbers appeared that are worth some discussion. 

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