Taking Over Grandfather’s Apartment Complex

Hi everyone! I’ve been presented with an opportunity of a lifetime today and need some advice from you amazing people!  My grandfather has been working out his will and apparently, I’m going to be the recipient of his 12-bedroom apartment complex. This is the opportunity of a lifetime but I’m a little nervous owning and managing this property at such a young age (22). The complex needs a lot of work, it’s currently on the lower end for rent for my area, $750 a month 2 bedroom 1 bath units. I have a few questions and am looking for advise here on how to proceed. I’ve reviewed his lease (which is about 10 years outdated) and have noticed that a newly rewritten one will probably be the first action I take. It is located across the street from a private university, but no university student has ever stayed there. My goal is to turn it into more of a college student housing hopefully, but I know that opens up a whole other can of worms. The college has also presented an offer to buy the property so they can level it and build a parking lot there ($100,000). I’ve just graduated college and selling the property would be a great short-term option, but my finance side is ready to take this head on and hang on for the long run. How do I manage a property? How do I proceed to meet all my tenants and know if they are good people? How do I reinforce my soon to be written lease agreement? How do I evict people? How do I handle frequent late payments? If I wanted to get a whole new set of residents, how would I go about getting all the current residents out? Should I sell now and not take on this project? I will be owning my family business within the next 10 years when my dad retires and I’m unsure how over worked I will be. Thank you all! Response: The value that the University offered for the property seems low to me. I know that you are young and probably feeling a bit overwhelmed but the reason you went to school is to learn how to think. I think you can manage this property and make money doing so. First of all, if you have some money available, I would have a contractor that your dad and trusts come and do an inspection of the property to find out what the problems are. Some common ones are old and leaky plumbing, asbestos in walls or in popcorn ceilings, mold, rotten wood in joist near bathrooms or kitchen, water leaking under the foundation, sinking or cracked foundation. Once you have that report you will have a better idea if this is something you want to take on. Second, I am going to recommend that you invest in software for your property management. I own a property management software company, Smart Property Systems and know that we can help guide you all the way as well as provide affordable tools that will keep you on track to be successful. Once you have done that, you can go to rentometer.com to compare your rents with the rents in the neighborhood that are similar units. Now review the tenant files to see who pays rent on time and who does not. Look at inspection reports to find out how they take care of the property. If there is no data, you will need to ask your grandfather. Now schedule inspections for each unit. You are required to give notice before you inspect the units and I would recommend at least several days’ notice. Smart Property Systems customer service can provide you with a document to use for inspection. Be sure to fill it out as you go through and have the tenant sign and date it when you finish. You can then make a copy for them and give it to them when you speak to them next. Now you can make a decision about who will stay and who will have their tenancy terminated if month to month and not extended if on a lease.  

Are You Afraid of Change???

Have you ever thought about how change affects your life? How many of us embrace the idea of change? How many dread it?  I am  not talking about change that comes when you get dressed.  I am not even talking about a change of scenery.  Those kinds of change can be easy to take, unless the view is from behind bars and walls.  Changing a diet can be very hard.  Changing where you live can be stress inducing.  Changing a job may be difficult for some. Changing the way you do your job may be even harder to accept.

Matathesiophobia= The fear of change.change fear                                                                                   Have you ever started something brand new and realized that you don’t have a clue about what you are doing?  Have you ever gotten physically dizzy or distracted from the task because you are having a hard time?  It can be like that for new owners or managers of investment properties. Even seasoned managers can get into overwhelm at times when the work load piles up. Many are literally overwhelmed by the prospect of having to advertise for tenants, do tenant screening and write leases.  But before we fall over the cliff in overwhelm, there is a better way. Using a quality software which is designed to be easy to use,  where the work flows don’t let anyone make a mistake, is the real answer.  Now that kind of change does not seem so hard.  The subscriber/new landlord or manager can have a path to follow with success at the end of the road.  When using the Smart Property Systems software, the steps for each task are lined out and the tools are right there on the dashboard for the investor/manager to use.

You have never used software before?  Is that a hard change to overcome?  Not really. Change can be easy to deal with, when there is a change of mind and good attitude.  Relaxing into the new software environment can actually be exciting as the user discovers that everything is automated and all work is saved by the software.  Just think. This change results in having all documents and tools at your fingertips. Simple organization at last!

Smart Property Systems offers property management software and it is designed to make the business of property management much easier for anyone doing that job.  But hardly a day goes by that someone in the customer service department hears a complaint from a subscriber or maybe a free trial users saying that it is hard for them to change. After talking about it for a few minutes they realize that their real reason is fear of change. Once that fear is overcome, the whole prospect of having answers to all questions and problems that come up in property management which are at their fingertips, makes the new world of software becomes glittery and golden.

Smart Property systems has been doing business in the Property Management Software sector since 2004 and served over 20,000 subscribers.  This company knows property management and understands the problems that repetitive tasks cause for the staff. Repetition can cause boredom and bored people make mistakes.k8479153 The motivation and dream of the staff at Smart Property Systems is to provide automation for those repetitive tasks and make the business of renting well managed properties to deserving tenants easier and more profitable. Software does not make mistakes. That is change we can believe in.

But what about the change that comes in having to pay for software? There again, just how valuable is your time?  When you get your properties and tenants into your subscription account and automate the rent collection, can you imagine how much time you will save every month?  Why that could be a full time assistant salary saved. If you have no assistant, using SPS software will cut your time by two thirds. Remember, now all communications  with tenants and vendors go through the message centers in each account portal, instead of having phone calls all hours of the day and night.  Now notices are sent though the software via email and stored in all appropriate accounts. Some, like statements and late fee notices are automated, so there is really nothing you have to do. Rent week comes and goes and all statements are sent out, rents collected and accounting for those payments done by the software for you!  You can look at the rent roll and see who has and has not paid.  So now, what will you do with all that extra time on your hands?  Maybe play some golf or tennis or go fishing? How about spending more time with the family?

Yes Change can bring stress but fear of change is really the main issue.  Once that fear is overcome, then the change from manual management of properties to software driven management is a no brainer.  Check us out at Smart Property System <https://smartpropertysystems.com>

Author: Timmi Ryerson
CEO
Smart Property Systems