11 min read

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.  

Topics: Tenant placement and retention Leases and Legal New Landlord
7 min read

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.

Topics: Tenant placement and retention Leases and Legal New Landlord
10 min read

Should I Accept Section 8 for My Indianapolis Rental Property?

By Jeremy Tallman on May 20, 2018 10:00:00 AM

A hot topic in the world of Real Estate Investing right now, is whether or not Landlords should accept Section 8.

Or rather, if they have to accept Section 8.

Many municipalities across the country are opting to make “source of income” a protected class. 

What does this mean for property Owners?

Basically, it makes your decision for you.

This increasingly popular trend ensures no Tenant is turned away due to being on a housing assistance program. In essence, you’re required to accept Section 8 vouchers.

So far, the state of Indiana has yet to implement this new protected class, but I’m sure it’s only a matter of time.

For now though, if you own rental properties in Indianapolis, you still have a choice.

So, let’s dive a little deeper into the world of Section 8 to:

  1. Help you determine whether or not you want to accept it for your properties.

  2. Educate you so that you’re prepared in the event you have to start accepting it.
Topics: Tenant placement and retention Leases and Legal
5 min read

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.

Topics: Tenant placement and retention Leases and Legal New Landlord
11 min read

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.*

Topics: Tenant placement and retention New Landlord
5 min read

How Does a Security Deposit Work in Indiana?

By Jeremy Tallman on Feb 25, 2018 10:00:00 AM

Security Deposits are extremely important. 

Important to you as the Landlord, and important to your Tenant, because it's their money... until it isn't.

In fact, my guess is if you polled Property Management Companies around the country, the majority would say Security Deposits generate the most friction in their businesses. 

So, you need to have strong processes around Security Deposits, understand your state and local laws and still be prepared for some battles along the way.

Today, we thought we would discuss best practices concerning Security Deposit and provide some additional insight into how Indiana operates (or fails to operate, in some cases).

Topics: Indianapolis market Tenant placement and retention