Inheriting Tenants? Protect Yourself

Apartment Building

When you buy an investment property, sometimes it will come with tenants already in place. These tenants can be a good thing as your new purchase will be immediately generating income. But, these tenants can also be a bad thing because you really have no idea how they were screened, how they have been as tenants or even what the details of their lease are. You can of course review existing written lease agreements, but there are landlords and tenants out there who have nothing…

Filling Out A 1099? Get A W-9 First


It’s a new year. And while a new year can bring many good things, it also brings thoughts of something looming right around the corner, April 15 and income taxes. I despise taxes as much as the next person. But I despise even more all of the paperwork that goes along with them. Unfortunately, if you are going to be a landlord, you are not going to be able to avoid some of this paper work, especially if you hire folks to perform various services…

Self Directed IRAs – A Smarter Wealth Building Tool


One of the first things I learned about when I was considering getting into real estate investing was the self-directed IRA.  If you have never heard of such a thing, a self-directed IRA is very similar to the more “traditional” IRAs that most associate with their jobs.  The main difference is your investment choices are not limited with a self-directed IRA.  With a self-directed IRA, the sky is almost the limit. A self-directed IRA is just that, self directed.  You make the choice of where…

Buying Apartments? Use This Form!

Buying Apartments

For us landlords, growing our business means adding new properties.  New property additions mean more rental units and more cashflow.  New property additions also mean more tenants.  Sometimes these tenants come with the properties we buy.  I call these tenants “inherited tenants.”  Inherited tenants pose a special kind of risk to a buyer in a couple of ways.  First, as a buyer you are generally bound by their existing lease agreements.  You cannot just kick tenants out, raise the rent or revise other lease terms…

Top 5 Smarterlandlording Posts in 2013


  Here are the top five posts for 2013.  Thanks for reading and look for lots more in 2014!   Have a Happy New Year!   The One Clause Every Lease In Tennessee Should Have 5 Traits Of An Effective Landlord Tenant Selection Criteria – What To Use? Cash For Keys The “Getting Your Deposit Back” Form

Online Rental Payment – A Must Have Tool

No More Checks!

I have a question for you.  What is the one thing we landlords want?  I’ll give you a hint. It usually comes on or about the first of the month.  Yep, you guessed it, the rent.  We want to collect the rent. So here is another question.  Why do many of us in this day and age make it so difficult for the tenant to get us the rent?  Think about it.  How many of you still require your tenants to mail you a check? …

What’s The Rent?

For Rent

Smarterlandlords want to maximize their investments by maximizing rental income.  That means they need to be charging top dollar for their rental properties.  Problem is, how do they know what to charge?  Here are some tips and tools to help.       Talk to other landlords.  Most have no problems telling you what they get in rents because they want to verify what they are doing as well.  Where do you find other landlords?  You can find then at your local REIA. Scan Craig’s…

A Key (Box) For Saving Time and Aggravation

The Keys

Ever notice that tenants will lock themselves out at the worst possible times?  Mine have called while I’m on vacation or out of town even once during an anniversary dinner. Repairs needing help from contractors were always fun too.  They would tell you when they would show up so you could meet them and let them in the property.  But, those contractors always took a little longer on the jobs before yours and that wait was always a little (a lot) longer than you thought….

The “Getting Your Deposit Back” Form

Moving Van

Tenant turnover is one of the costliest aspects of this business.  You have to advertise and re-rent the property.  Most likely you will also have to do some clean up and repairs after the tenant moves out.  One of our most important goals in this business is to get our properties back from tenants in a clean and nearly rent ready condition. Getting your properties back in a clean and rent ready condition is not impossible.  To do it you need to do three things. …

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