Why You Need a Property Management Company in the DFW Area
Whether you are an out-of-state property owner, a longtime local landlord, or are just getting into the property rental business, there are plenty of reasons why you need a company like Frontline Property Management on the ground for you in the DFW area.
2021 has been an interesting year for the Dallas / Fort Worth rental market – to say the least. As we’ve discussed before, the DFW is a very attractive market for Millennials & Gen Z, and is one of the top destinations for out-of-state moves. Investors have used this information to capitalize on the need for housing – and you may have, too! You have a property in a hot market that you’d like to rent. But now what?
You Need Management that Knows the Market
On top of the complications that the pandemic has had on the housing market, the failure of the Texas power grid in February of 2021 exacerbated conditions by forcing many renters out of damaged properties. In a seller’s market like the one we’ve seen this year, many individuals who would otherwise be buying houses are choosing to rent a bit longer. Meaning that there is immense competition between renters for available housing – which is good for DFW landlords. Competitive rental markets translate to higher rents in keeping with the average rent of a given neighborhood in the face of the market overall. A property management company that wants to grow your business is always aware of the many factors and nuances in the market.
You Need Vendors You Can Trust
Frontline Property Management employs many Property Managers who bring decades of experience to the table. The maintenance vendors we use are also experienced, vetted, and local. Relationships are what property management is all about! We take our time to strengthen our vendors with the online tools they need to be the most accessible and responsive. There’s an increasing number of vendors in the DFW area, which makes it daunting to choose a company to work with (particularly if you’re not a local). Transparent communication between our clients, our Property Managers and the vendors we use ensures that you are always up to date with your properties.
You Need Eyes, Ears, and Hands-On Management
While it takes a certain amount of business and research skills to stay on top of the market, there is no substitute for hands-on experience. You need Property Managers who know the Dallas / Fort Worth area down to the neighborhoods. You can trust the assessment of our Management team when it comes to evaluating your property’s value, condition, and what it takes to have it ready to become your passive income! With Frontline, you’re able to rest easy in the knowledge that our Property Managers are on top of any issues – sometimes before they start – so that you don’t have to think about it.
Out of state investors, especially, need to be able to rely on a company that can view, assess, and respond on-site.
You Need Management that Will Help Grow Your Investment
Property Management alone is only an organized system of processes. There are thousands of details to set up these processes, but to put simply it’s getting rental income from a tenant into your bank account. A Property Manager facilitates this process and cares for the physical property in the owner’s stead, but Frontline takes this relationship and builds on it by going a step further: We work to keep you informed. Not just about your property, but about what opportunities may arise due to market conditions. Our client newsletter provides you with up-to-date business information, including pertinent legislation. Property owners looking to get the most out of their investment, and then to grow their portfolio, will find that Frontline provides all of the necessary experience and drive to help you get there.
You Need Frontline Property Management
We’ve faced some unique challenges over the past two years, but Frontline has risen to meet them every step of the way. Utilizing our team of experienced professionals, we have been able to be proactive rather than reactive, and have continued to provide quality service to both our clients and our many tenants. We strive to strengthen our relationships and to create new ones as we move forward!
Contact us today to learn more about our Property Management team!
Have a rental property that you need help with? Just fill out this form and we will reach out to you!
5 Pieces of Tips and Advice for Investing in Rental Property
Written By: Andrea Erickson
Rental properties are a hot topic again since the real estate market is a madhouse currently, and many people are trying to figure out how to cash in on this. Although you can’t go back in time and buy properties when they were far cheaper: you can get the most income possible out of the currently available properties.
Here is some important information you should keep in mind when looking at which properties to invest in.
Consider if There’s Extra Land to Develop
When buying land, look beyond the current buildings that are sitting on it. Although things are far easier if you can rent out already finished units: there’s always room for more. While still maintaining common spaces, room for parking, and the apartments themselves, consider if there’s enough room on the property or neighboring property to expand the apartments further. The more units, the higher return, and the faster the property gets paid off so that it’s nothing but income.
Use Software to Manage Everything
Although it might seem obvious, many first-time renovators don’t realize how much goes into owning a rental complex: the more units, the more problems. Good software will let you track when an apartment was last renovated, how many issues a renter has caused, and who’s paid on time or not. Seek out landlord maintenance software that will help you track this information.
A worthwhile software should also notify you when a renter’s lease is closing soon, take care of maintenance, and be easy to use. If a property management app doesn’t have what you need, it’s never too late to switch to a new one.
Ensure the Property is Appealing
Aesthetics matter to everyone. Even though sometimes people will overlook an unattractive property if it means the costs are low enough: you don’t want your property to be like this. The lower the rent, the lower the profit. When purchasing a property, ensure that you pick one that people will want to move into.
The top things that build appeal are:
- Natural areas with trees and grass.
- Beautiful, clean, and fresh-looking exteriors.
- Amenities like pools and tennis courts are visibly well maintained.
- Gorgeous skylines if within a city.
- Attention to detail in everything from a well-maintained sidewalk to the apartment number signs.
The attractiveness can always be built upon by creating areas with natural beauty, like portions of land with trees and grass, or updating the interiors with the best flooring for rental properties.
Look Into the Current Rental History
If the property you’re looking at has already operated as an apartment complex or a rental property in general, what’s its history look like? How long have other land buyers overlooked this property? Ask the current owners how much they get on average for rent and if the current renters are responsible and pay on time.
Changing management doesn’t mean that the renters will necessarily have to leave, depending on the terms of their lease, so it’s a good idea to get to know the type of people who live in the area. If the complex seems to have a lot of eviction notices, or it’s in a place where the cost of rent wouldn’t be sustainable for the average wages of the area, this might not be a great property.
Don't Assume Any Project Could Be Considered Small
Looking at rental units to purchase, it can be tempting to view them the same way we view homes when we are buying them. A fresh coat of paint here, composite slate on the roof there, it might seem simple: but apartment complexes will quickly become expensive. Unfortunately, there’s no way to avoid these costs if they’re necessary, so when you’re shopping around, consider which projects you’d be willing to do for every single unit that you’ll be renting out.
It might not be a big deal to remodel the bathroom of a home, but remodeling the bathrooms of an apartment complex will eat up a lot of time and resources. Avoid this; take the time to make sure the property you purchase is the best fit possible. If you do need to do extensive updates, budget to ensure there’s room for that in your time and financial budget. Don’t leap into a project without knowing the full story.
Rental Properties Are Passive Income Gold
Whether you’re purchasing several apartment complexes or a single-family property, rental properties have the potential to divert thousands upon thousands of dollars to your bank account.
To build upon these properties, it’s good to update each space within the room by room when people move out. This will allow for a more gradual transition to a completely updated property while still ensuring that most units are in use or are more quickly available.
Andrea Erickson is a contributor to Innovative Building Materials. She is a blogger and content writer for the real estate industry. Andrea is focused on helping fellow homeowners, contractors, and architects discover materials and methods of construction that increase property value, maximize energy savings, and turn houses into homes.
Have a rental property that you need help with? Just fill out this form and we will reach out to you!
Benefits and Challenges of Multifamily Property Management
Multifamily Properties may be the answer to the affordability issue that the nation currently faces. As we look forward to the post-2020 future, we will continue to see its effects on labor, wages, rent costs and the housing market.
This all affects how effective an investment your property is. Multifamily property management has a unique and quite variable set of benefits and challenges that you should be aware of whether you are renting out a duplex or are looking to build a high-rise apartment!
Getting into the Market
The Challenge: Entering the multifamily housing market is becoming a feat unto itself. There’s plenty of capital chasing after limited deals, so the competition is thick! For the same reason that many millennials aren’t able to afford their dream home, you may be facing a challenge in finding an existing property to invest in, or a lot to buy: bigger developers have seen the market trends and are moving in. Not only are single-family homes being purchased, which puts it out of reach for the average homebuyer, but developers are doing everything they can to meet the housing demand.
The Benefit: It’s not impossible to get into the market as an investor. You aren’t competing with homebuyers, and a single loan is much simpler to take on for multiple passive-income-producing units. Of course, the reason developers are focusing on multifamily is because it’s a great investment! Over the long run, multifamily housing remains steady even through economic downturns because people need affordable housing.
Buying to Hold (Rather than Sell)
The Challenge: In the past, the trend in housing as an investment was more “buy, lease, sell”: Buy a property, lease it out to recoup refurbishment costs, then sell the updated property at a net gain. However, more and more, you’re going to want to focus on the long-haul and hold the property.
The Benefit: Multifamily housing is a dependable source of income that has seen an increase in the length of residency. Increased multifamily tenancy has come as the result of the increased competition for single-family residences, the need for affordable housing, and the desire of some to build credit or save for a permanent home. In any case, steady management of multifamily properties is a guaranteed income for an investor!
Appealing to Multiple Generations
The Challenge: We’ve discussed before that there has been an increased focus on the generations that make up the largest portion of the rental population: Millennials and Gen Z. Not only is affordability at the top of the list, but environmentally sounds practices, convenience and location also dominate the rental desires of these generations who are willing to sacrifice space for walkability. However, Empty Nesters are a significant part of the growing rental population, and their needs are different. Empty Nesters generally have more disposable income and appreciate more space. So while you may be crunching the numbers on one-and-two bedrooms with reduced square footage to maximize profitability, you may be cornering yourself out of the Empty Nester market that prefers three or more bedrooms in a multifamily setting.
The Benefit: Remember that as a multifamily manager, you are not catering to an age range – you are catering to a lifestyle that renters want. Most people want peace, quiet, and a place to live their lives privately, wherever that may be. Implementing a variety of floorplans means that you can capture business whether it’s an extroverted Gen Z who likes to bike to the city or a retired grandparent who wants to keep a guest room open just in case they get a visitor. You are in no way limited with your plans moving forward, as the demand on each end of the spectrum is so high!
Short Term Rentals
The Challenge: Airbnb has disrupted the home buying and rental markets in a very short amount of time. Single-family homes have been removed from the market and turned into short-term rental properties that drive up home prices in areas that homebuyers were previously able to afford. However; the screening process for short-term renters is often unregulated and the lack of a thorough screening can put your property, and other tenants, at increased risk.
The Benefits: Multifamily units as short-term rentals caters to the here-and-gone crowd without alienating the local population. Some property managers create properties for the sole purpose of short-term rentals, while others at least keep them separated from the long-term lease-holders. The demand isn’t quite there in many areas for this to be considered absolutely steady income, but it is a great way to attain a resident while marketing for long-term leases.
The Challenge: Residential real estate in most major metropolitan areas are primarily zoned for single-family housing. Multifamily buildings and complexes have consistently faced suppression as affordable housing has been mischaracterized as “low-rent”.
The Benefit: Some places are revisiting that strategy in order to combat the affordability crisis. In fact, you aren’t only seeing apartments in urban areas anymore – they’re going suburban! As the ever-increasing need for housing continues in the competitive housing and rental markets, multifamily is the practical solution for many cities. Not only is zoning adapting to the changing climate, but with the latest economic crisis on top of the continuing economic issues the average renter faces, there is the probability that legislation that introduces rent control will be more prevalent. Coastal markets are likely to see these efforts long before the Texas housing market, especially in the Dallas / Fort Worth markets! But adaptability is key, and information is king!
Looking at multifamily property management, it can be easy to miss the forest for the trees. There is a huge breadth of opportunities for success with multifamily properties, and it’s one of the most versatile investments in real estate. Frontline Property Management has the experts and supporting staff you need, whether you’re building new or buying in – we want to help!
Contact us today to discuss your future in multifamily investment and property management!
Have a multifamily property that you need help with? Contact us today!
Renting Your Multifamily Units: Three Issues to Be Aware Of
Multifamily housing is both an efficient and practical way to maximize the profitability of a property. While there are benefits to owning properties in diverse markets, when you have a multifamily property to manage, you can more easily focus on addressing the needs of your tenants all in one place.
However, there are key differences between managing several single family properties and managing a multifamily property. You’ll want to keep these three points in mind as you endeavor to manage your property:
Increased Administrative Requirements
Before diving into managing any property, you will need to first have your business plan in order, including your administrative process. This means everything from your branding/marketing to your accounting needs to be coalesced into a well-oiled machine. If you are doing it all yourself, you must take the time to sort out the details prior to accepting any applications, as it only gets more complicated as transactions begin. Remember, you can be audited at any time, so having your paperwork records in order is an absolute must.
Multifamily properties, whether it’s two units or thirty, will automatically multiply your administrative workload exponentially. Every application, every unit, and each tenant, must be filed and accounted for carefully. With multiple leases, contracts and letters going back and forth, this can be daunting for one person to handle. Organization, consistency, and processing administrative needs on a daily basis is part of managing a multifamily property.
Neighbor Conflicts & Resolutions
Nearly everyone who has rented a property has had to deal with a complaint made either by or about a neighbor. With a single family residence, tenants are much more likely to understand that you cannot control the annoying habits of a neighbor whose lease you don’t hold. In a multifamily setting, you may find yourself often being pitched between two units.
When tenants live close to each other and share common areas, it’s natural that their lives will overlap in some way. Ideally, it’s in a pleasant, neighborly, manner. Often, it’s a bit less than that. Remaining compliant with Fair Housing laws requires that you, as the landlord, not become personally involved. That introduces your own implicit biases into the equation and can lead to legal trouble down the road. The best solution is to address any lease violations quickly and plainly, in writing, to any unit who is in violation. Outside of lease violations, you simply cannot mediate between tenants who personally dislike each other. Documenting complaints and all communications should already be part of your administrative process – continue to do so. Inform the tenants of the legal limitations of your involvement – you only manage the properties and leases, not tenant behavior.
Though your tenants live separate lives in individual units, they share one roof. When it springs a leak, everyone will have work to do. Shared walls, floors, plumbing, and roofs make maintenance a particularly tricky task. One irresponsible tenant can damage an entire property, and as we saw in this year’s ice storm (which will likely increase the need for apartments), there are some forces that can affect an entire building at once. While some tenants know how to properly assess a situation and change their behavior as needed to prepare (and because you send out seasonal and extreme weather tenant letters – or you should be) – it won’t matter much if one tenant does absolutely nothing to prevent damage to the property.
Communicating with your tenants in advance is the best course of action. Responding to work orders as quickly as possible is another. The benefit of multiple tenancy in a structure is that while there may be one tenant who will not report an issue, there will be another who will. Maintaining the repair and integrity of your property will ensure that it is a reliable source of income for years to come, and your tenants are your eyes and ears in that respect – use them!
We understand that managing a multifamily property is a big undertaking. Even a duplex is a lot of hands-on, round-the-clock work. Frontline Property Management has the experience and the staff to handle your multifamily management needs! Our tenant coordinators work every day to maximize your occupancy as well as handle your everyday administrative needs.
When you are ready to work with a team that protects your frontline so that you can increase your bottom line, contact us!
Have a property you need help with? Just fill out this form and we will reach out to you to see how we can help!!!
Housing will continue to go for a premium – people will always need somewhere to live, and every year more and more adults enter the housing market. Renting has increased in desirability due to the economic crises of the past decade. Younger generations buying houses is at an all-time low, and many older generations (empty nesters) are selling their homes and re-entering the rental market.
This is where you come in!
Unless your passion is particularly in housing, you most likely are in the business of real estate to earn money – specifically, a healthy passive income after an initial investment. Multifamily housing is an excellent way to begin investing in real estate!
What is a Multifamily Property?
Multifamily properties are exactly what they sound like – individual units that are either in the same building or that share walls. These units are occupied by different tenants/families. Hence, multi-family properties.
This is everything from a duplex, to condos, to high-rise apartments. (Keep in mind that, legally, these are not all treated the same – we’ll get to that!)
Examples of other multifamily property types are:
- triplexes, fourplexes
- bungalow courts
- townhouses, garden apartments
- multistory apartment buildings
Local & Federal Governance - Fair Housing Act and the Americans With Disabilities Act:
The Federal Fair Housing Act leaves very few exemptions for property management, but one such exclusion is that apartments of four units or less are exempt if the owner lives in one of the units.
Commercial Real Estate Properties (offices, warehouse & other non-residential buildings) must be more concerned with the ADA than the FHA, as the FHA concerns residential properties. However, multifamily properties must be well-versed in both the FHA & the ADA. While the bulk of business comes from residential income (therefore regulated by the FHA), public access areas, like lobbies, gyms, swimming pools, or leasing offices, must be ADA compliant.
Why Do Renters Choose Multifamily Properties?
Multifamily is playing a key part of urban infrastructure development! As suburban sprawl spreads outwards, for multifamily units in urban areas like DFW, the sky is literally the limit! Multifamily units ability to build housing upwards creates homes in areas that younger generations want to live in!
We’ve discussed before that Millennials and Gen Z are the fastest-growing rental population. The priorities of these financially-pressed generations focus on convenience, accessibility to social gathering places, affordability, and management values that acknowledge and reflect their own. Multifamily is flexible enough to accommodate these demands.
For empty-nesters and retirees, a multifamily setting is a reduced workload from the continuing maintenance of home ownership. Multifamily properties take on the burden of repairs and maintenance for older renters who would much rather spend their golden years relaxing!
Multifamily properties continue to be in demand, and will certainly grow as the population does! Management of these properties is a unique challenge for a landlord. Everything from applications to tenant issues, multiplied by the number of units that you manage – it can be quite the task! An experienced Property Management team like Frontline Property Management can help you assess your goals, manage your tenants and take the legwork (and guesswork!) out managing your multifamily properties!
Contact us today for more information about how we manage thousands of doors in the Dallas-Fort Worth area!