Expert Blogs

Weather affects every property differently.  I've seen buildings side-by-side where wind completely removed one roof while leaving the building next door intact.  The elements like heat (fire), snow, water and ice take a terrible toll on property assets.  They are a constant, never ending source of pressure that can only be deflected, but never full addressed. Fire (heat), ice and water are  the three constant weather elements...

The price of gasoline impacts every part of our lives from the food we eat to the cars we drive and our selection of a place to live.  Include real estate investing in this grouping. In my self-imposed naivete I believe oil prices should be $35-75 per barrel.  What keeps prices above these levels are things un-related to actual oil production;  like presumed un-rest, the 24-hour news cycle, three guys in Luxembourg hoarding contracts in an...

In real estate investing, finding the perfect multifamily asset to purchase has little to do with the actual real estate.  Blink blink.  What?  No, really.  Why?  This is because any particular piece of real estate is only as important (read; as valuable) as the content of its surroundings.  Finding the perfect asset begins with quality market research. Meaning: a specific real property asset is defined by the market dynamics...

In the evolution of mortgage financing, lenders have expanded the boundaries to include a rainbow of options.  The recent recession has decreased the colors in this rainbow, but we still have five hundred more options today than our grandparents.  Ok, may that's a bit of a stretch, but only a little If we were building our very own mortgage loan what would that look like?  In the real world, no zero interest, self-liquidating...

On February 9, 1996 I was fired for personal reasons from an executive position with a large sales organization within the multifamily industry.  For some, this day would be considered the day a large door was slammed shut. Instead, I will always remember this date as the day 1000 windows were opened!  On this day in 1996 my wife and I climbed a small hilltop near our home in Southern California…and we planned our future for many hours. ...

What does real estate equity and jet fuel have in common?  Both can evaporate before your very eyes!   Equity is the rocket fuel of real estate investing.  In the last five years we have experienced an entire real estate cycle. Simplified the real estate cycle is equilibrium, growth, over-built (bubble), bust, recovery.  Except for the recovery part we have seen each part of the cycle in the last five years.  A rocket...

What Google and Intel Know about real estate investing is that a certain cross section of skills is necessary to optimally run a business.  Using a fine point pen, these two global, multi-billion dollar companies have identified the necessary core competencies they desire and they know exactly the type of people they wish to hire.  I believe that property management companies hiring people with these same skills could see exponential increases in...

The question that will come to mind as you read this is "who does that?".  The unfortunate answer is too many people. We are in an industry full of talented people.  Mostly. If these mistakes are occurring with your assets it is probably time to look for new management, first to stop the damage and second to remedy the potential of on-going issues and the exposure they present.  Suffice to say these are all ..... bad. 1....

Landscaping is important.  In the property management business spring is when we set up for the summer pool season. Winter is the time to think about the spring growing season and how to best address grounds maintenance. Addressing landscaping, ground cover, plantings and soils seems like such a simple question.  At the very least it takes pre-planning to assure fixed price contracts in advance of service. If a plant scientist were to...

There is no way to avoid it.  If you are in any way involved with income property management then sometime during your career path you and the assets under your management will be impacted by crime.  Sometimes, violent crime. I am not exactly sure why crime is such a big seller on television.  There are more Cops and Robber shows than ever. Perhaps it is because even a single act of crime impacts so many lives.  When crime comes to your...

For stabilized multifamily everyday appliances include stoves, dishwashers, refrigerators and microwaves (built in).  Unlike disposals and locks, unless there is secure storage on site, keeping reserve appliances on hand is seldom a good idea. It's amazing how often a refrigerator can "grow legs" if left un-attended for several months. Here are a few options for just-in-time appliance buying. Buying Used.  For stoves,...

Research has shown that a person who resigns from your property management company is leaving for one of three possible reasons: a new career opportunity, an unsolicited job offer or for a grievance that has not been handled correctly.  Whenever a person resigns from your property management company for voluntary reasons it’s normally a surprise and it can be expensive to replace a valuable team member.  This article will outline three...

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