Investment properties can be an excellent source of passive income but only if they're managed correctly. Understanding the best way to realize the full potential for your property is the best way to improve the return on your investment. At Jackson Property Management, we've made the business of property management into a science.
Our proprietary Long-term vs. Vacation-rental analytical tool can help give you answers about the potential of your property as-is. We'll include detailed research and give you the relevant information about the unit, including valuation and an appraisal, and pro forma reporting.
After our in-depth appraisal, we'll perform a custom appraisal of your property, we may discover that your long-term rental will work well as a vacation rental, and enable you to realize a greater profit. If so, we offer a RISK FEE TRIAL to test it out.
Here's how the process works: we pay you the long-term market rate for the property for a term of 3, 6, 9, or 12 months. Then, we'll manage the property as a vacation rental, instead of a long-term tenancy property. The vacation revenues that we collect, we use to pay you for the long-term rental. If there's a shortfall between the vacation revenue and the long-term rental amount both parties agreed upon, we will make up the difference. But, if the property's performance exceeds our expectations, we change the contract to allow you to receive the increased revenue.
This gives our property owner clients real, actionable information, and a no-lose chance to determine which option will work best. We also have other ways to help you improve your ROI on your investment properties.
The Short-Term/ Long-Term Hybrid
This program combines the best of both worlds, allowing the tenant in a long term rental to operate extra space or a spare bedroom as an Airbnb rental. This can be a win-win for your tenant, as they'll share a portion of the Air BnB revenue with you, plus brings them extra income, making their housing costs more affordable.
- The property owner collects revenue above the market rate for the rental
- A written agreement makes the process transparent and protects the property owner – many tenants may be doing this under the table
- This can be a powerful tenant retention tool, making your tenants more invested in the property
The program allows both you and your tenant to garner extra income by operating an AirBnB, and, since their housing becomes more affordable and both of you have an agreement in place, it makes the tenantless willing to leave your property, especially for a rental that won't let them sublet. Remember, even one month of your property being empty can make a big difference in the profitability of the property.
The tenant has the flexibility to sublet when they want to, and the option not to on occasions when it's inconvenient or they simply don't want extra houseguests. Part of the agreement leaves the tenant in full control of running the Airbnb rental, including maintaining the standards of cleanliness and good repair that you expect to have on your property. They'll operate the rental, including cleaning, providing and extras and amenities, determining who they'll allow for bookings, and collecting the revenue and paying the appropriate occupancy taxes.
However – and this helps protect both of you – Jackson Property Management will obtain the correct licensure for the short term rental and ensure that it's operating within the local ordinances.
Vacancy and Occupancy
You can't make money with an empty property. At Jackson Property Management, we're as committed as you are to keeping your property full – we make money when you do. However, there's more that contributes to vacancy in your rental unit than just time between tenants or a poor rental market. Understanding a property management company's vacancy rate helps you, the property owner, determine the right representative for you.
The biggest expense in the rental business is vacancy. Any time that a property sits empty means that the potential revenue is lost forever. When property owners look at a profit and loss statement from a property management company, it's easy to overlook vacancy – in fact, it's pretty easy to disguise as an insignificant factor. In order to fully understand vacancy, consider that there are several factors beyond the normal market vacancy rate and time between tenants that contribute to it.
Vacancy is the time between tenants, but the reasons behind this occupancy gap can vary.
- Poor marketing and advertising. Tenants can't rent a unit that they don't know is available, and part of the services from a property management company is making sure that your unit is effectively advertised
- Are you a good landlord? Is your property manager responsive? Unhappy tenants don't stay long, and a stream of turnover may indicate that either you, the landlord, or the property manager isn't being responsive to tenant needs
- Is your property in a condition that attracts tenants?
- Just how good is your property management company?
Evaluating a property management company for vacancy
A savvy property investor needs a good property management company. The best way to find a good company to represent you is to explore their vacancy rates. If a company can't give you solid numbers or is evasive, they may not be able to qualify this themselves.
Another thing to look for is whether a company charges ou management fees regardless if a unit is vacant or occupied. In these situations, there's no incentive for a property management company to keep your unit or units occupied – they'll make money either way. Look instead for property management companies that only collect their fees based on rents collected – both you and your representative have the same interest in keeping your units full.
No property management company is perfect, but Jackson Property Management prides itself on client retention, and that means keeping our clients' rentals profitable. To that end, we believe in being transparent with vacancy rates, and while this can be hard to quantify, we've designed our rental analysis programs and property assessments around this concept.
Tenants Caused Property Damage
Tenants are expected to carry renters insurance, and a good property management company will encourage tenants to also participate in an insurance program for property damage. However, there are instances when a tenant causes extreme damage, and they don't have the means to cover that damage. This means that you're on the hook for those repairs.
Our company eliminates this burden by requiring all tenants to either enroll in our property damage plan or purchase their own renters' insurance policy. The plan from Jackson Property Management can be attractive for tenants and rolled into their monthly rent payments. This plan has a $50 deductible and as such covers everything after the first $50 up to $10,000. Our coverage pays before your own insurance policy, and as such ensures that your insurance rates will stay low. It also protects you against a deductible gap and helps you retain your cash flow, even when an unexpected expense arises.
This part of our contract applies more to larger multi-family properties, but it's an additional revenue generator. In fact, regardless of their economic situation, 95% of tenants have access to the internet. We can require that they enroll with our contracted Internet Service Provider, contracting with all rental units across a multi-family unit or throughout an apartment complex.
This gives you as a property owner a discounted rate for the internet, and also a selling point, that you make internet inclusive to your units. Lower cost per unit basis with the internet and making it included in the rental rate is an extra profit stream for you.
This refers to making physical improvements to a property, usually with a multi-family unit. It can improve your net ROI and also make it easier to sell your unit at a higher value.
For more information on repositioning see our multi-family page.
Does Your Rental Need a Rehab?
Great tenants select great units. Keeping your rental unit in the best condition will ensure that you can attract the top quality renters and reduce vacancy. However a full property makeover can be expensive, so a full upgrade can be prohibitive for many property owners. How do you split the line between collecting consistent trends and giving your unit a "time out" for upgrade and renovations?
The rule of thumb is that whatever renovations you make should balance out with an increased rent. Usually, you'll recoup your investment within a year. even cosmetic units have a shelf life of seven years, so, when you break even after three years you'll realize greater profits and generally greater tenants A month or two of vacancy can be more profitable with greater profits from a higher rent and longer tenancy.
Use good judgment
Don't be overly ambitious with making improvements with your rental. Look at your market, your location, and your target tenant demographic. It can be fun to invest in granite countertops and upgrade your rental, but will that actually give you a good return on that investment?
If you have a Class C property in an older neighborhood, or one with lower-income renters, than those higher-end fixtures, aren't going to pay off. But, if you're planning to own that property, investing in lasting fixtures and counters will help offset replacement costs. Essentially, it is about balance, and you'll have to determine that as a property owner.
Rent Protection Program (RPP)
As a property owner, a tenant defaulting on rent can not only put your ability to pay that mortgage om the property. Sometimes, your regular income can be disrupted by an inconsistent tenant. This can make you have a severe financial hardship and will affect your investment.
Jackson Property Management offers a Rent Protection Program tat can help offset your financial burden if a tenant defaults on their rent. Once you're enrolled and it's determined that eh tenant will permanently default on their rent, then we'll reimburse you one mont's rent for that property. This can help with the sudden interruption in your cash flow, and can especially benefit those without large cash reserves.
The costs for this program are $15 per month for properties under $2,500 per month and $21 for rents of $2,500 and higher. You can find more information on our guarantees page.
Eviction Protection (EPP)
This is similar to our Rent Protection Program and is put in place to protect landlords from undue financial hardship. Missed rents can escalate, and sometimes, a tenant is unwilling to give up occupancy of the residence. If this happens (and we do our utmost to prevent this), then you as a landlord will have to pay the costs of the eviction to regain control of the residence.
This, plus the loss of rent monies during the process, can severely hamper your finances and put you at risk of losing your investment. To mitigate your risk, we offer the EPP for $15 per month. Once you're enrolled, we'll pay for any eviction expenses, including filing the court paperwork, the legal fees, and court fees up to $2,000.
Unless yours is a case of severe misconduct, or if there are extenuating circumstances, most evictions typically cost less than $2,000.
We have a talented team of experienced attorneys with a high success rate in removing the tenant and recovering monetary damages for you. We'll include representation in court and even "sip tracing" or tracking down a tenant that may have left the area. If necessary, we'll also file wage garnishment paperwork with the employers and collect the fees on your behalf.
While not every landlord may need this protection, those with limited cash reserves or ones who own only one property may benefit from this program. You can find out more on our guarantees page.
Let's Get Started!
At Jackson Property management, we're experts in the property management business. We've worked with property owners just like you to help improve the return on your investment and protect your property. Our depth of understanding of California laws regarding rental properties and landlord-tenant relationships helps protect you and bring more stable, well-paying tenants to your properties. Visit us online for more information and to book your assessment appointment today!