The 10 Most Common Legal Mistakes Indianapolis Landlords Make

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

In the rental property industry there are always two sides of the coin - Landlords and Tenants.

In a perfect world, everything would always go smoothly, everyone would get along, and both parties would see eye to eye. 

Unfortunately, we live far, far away from that world. 

Every state has laws in place to protect both property Owners and Renters and there are certain requirements expected of each. You've heard the saying: "with great power comes great responsibility." Well, as a Landlord, you hold a great deal of power in your hands and so you have a greater burden of expectation. 

After being in business for over 10 years, we've made our fair share of mistakes and we've seen the pitfalls that other Landlords have fallen into as well. 

The bottom line is, it's on you - not your Tenant, not your lawyer - to ensure you're complying with state, federal, and municipal laws. Ignorance will not hold up in a court of law. 

Take a few minutes to read about the most common legal mistakes we've seen Landlords make across the board so that you don't suffer the same fate.  

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Tales from an Indianapolis Property Management Company: Why Tenants and Owners Should Never Meet

By Jeremy Tallman on May 13, 2018 10:00:00 AM

Today, we thought we would begin a regular - or not so regular - blog series that brings you real-life stories, from a real-life Property Management Company - us - about various situations relevant to the day-to-day life of a Property Manager.

I’m certain, as single family Property Management continues to grow, that someone will produce a reality TV show about our industry.

Because, as you can imagine, or as you may know if you are a Landlord, there can be a lot of drama in the rental business.

Today’s story details an event that happened many years ago.

It was an event that was very painful, taught us some valuable lessons, and made us a much better Company in the long run.

But - wow - was it difficult.

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The Pros and Cons of Forming an LLC to Invest in Indianapolis Rental Real Estate

By Devon L. Hicks on May 6, 2018 10:00:00 AM

If you’re reading this blog, it’s probably safe to assume that you’re conducting research to determine whether or not you should form an LLC for real estate investing purposes.

The good news is, there’s a fair amount of information out there, the bad news is, there’s no general consensus. Investors are are pretty torn on this issue and both sides of the argument seem to be passionate about why they’re right.

You can see a clear example of that in these two BiggerPockets articles, one against using LLCs and a rebuttal discussing why you absolutely should.

Out of the hundreds of investors that we represent, around 15% of them have formed LLCs to conduct their rental property business. That may not seem like an overwhelming majority, however, I think it’s a big enough number to warrant further discussion.

We certainly can’t tell you one way or the other what you should do, but there are definitely some pros and cons that you should be aware of when using an LLC for REI.

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An Indianapolis Property Manager's Review of Propertyware

By Jeremy Tallman on Apr 29, 2018 10:00:00 AM

If you Google “Property Management Software”, you will be overwhelmed at the amount of results that come back.

There are literally dozens of different companies out there all vying for your business and it can be daunting trying to scan through reviews and product descriptions to determine what solution will work best for you.

If you have been researching different PM software, you’ve most likely come across Propertyware. It’s by far one of the most popular options on the market right now along with Appfolio, Buildium, and a few other big names.

Our Company uses Propertyware. Today, we thought we would give you an extensive review of the product that we’ve used for more than 10 years.

*This review is not solicited or paid for by Propertyware or any of its affiliates.*

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5 Tips to Minimize Vacancy in Your Indianapolis Rental Property

By Jeremy Tallman on Apr 22, 2018 10:00:00 AM

Vacancies present quite a challenge to Real Estate investors.

And in spite of your best efforts, vacancy is inevitable. No matter how good of a Landlord you are, Tenants are eventually going to move. And when they do, it's critical to minimize that vacancy as much as possible.

Tenant turnover is a big expense for many Landlords in the first place. And if you can't get the property re-rented in a reasonable amount of time, lost rents, cleaning costs, maintenance and advertising will compound the Vacancy Effect.  

In a previous blog we discussed ways to increase Tenant retention, and today we are going to share some ways you can reduce down time between Tenants.

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Vacancy: The Ultimate Indianapolis Rental Property Cash Flow Killer

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

When you think about rental property expenses, things like maintenance, management fees and mortgages are probably what come to mind.

But there’s one item you may not find when Googling typical costs associated with owning rental real estate.

Vacancy.

Now, you can argue that vacancy isn’t an expense per se. It doesn’t show up as a line item on your Profit & Loss statement, but it does have an impact on your income, and is what we’ve called time and time again a “cash flow killer.”

We always advise our Central Indiana Investors to consider vacancy as an associated cost of owning a rental property and to budget accordingly. A general rule of thumb is to expect your property to be vacant for at least one month out of the year or, at a minimum, 8%. Most industry experts will argue that 10% is a better number.

Fortunately, vacancy is currently at a cyclical low nationally, and Indianapolis is set to see a vacancy rate of 6.9%, which is down 70 basis points from 2016 according to homeunion.com.

Even though single family home vacancy rates are on the decline, it’s critical to be prepared for when your property sits vacant longer than you anticipated.

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