A Simple Guide to Becoming the Ultimate Landlord

House KeyThe rental market has seen a large increase in the last few years. Because many millennials are opting to rent before purchasing their first home, now is a great time to become a property owner. There are many characteristics that a great landlord must have, and it’s important to have a complete understanding of your responsibilities before investing in a rental property. Here’s what you need to know:

Know the Law

Learn the specific landlord-tenant laws according to your state. You can find details on landlord-tenant laws in Indiana here. By knowing the law, you can protect yourself and ensure that you are engaging in established best practices when renting your property

Find the Right Property

When purchasing a rental property, you want to make sure that you choose the right property for you. It may be easy to buy a cheaper home and fix it up, but be careful that you don’t take on a property that becomes more work than you can handle. Adkin Management Group can help you find the right property in Indiana.

Establish a Reasonable Rent Price

When establishing a rent price, you need to consider the rent of other homes in the area, as well as the condition of your property. Investing in new appliances and amenities, for example, may allow you to charge more for rent without discouraging prospective tenants.

Find the Right Tenant

You’ve got the perfect property and are all set to go. Now you just need a tenant! When searching for the right tenant, it’s important to perform a proper screening to be sure you can trust them. By doing a background check and checking their credit and employment history, you can establish the responsibility of your tenant.

Check Your Property Often

By inspecting your property regularly, you will be able to stay on top of any issues that may arise along the way. Your tenant will appreciate you for maintaining the upkeep on their rental.

Being a property owner can be challenging, but if you are consistent and patient it can become a very rewarding source of income. If you think you have what it takes to become a landlord, now is a great time to break into this lucrative market. Contact AMG Property Management for professional property management assistance today!

State Lawmaker Introduces Legislation to Expand Tenant Rights

Lease AgreementMore than a quarter off all Indiana residents rent their homes, according to Democratic State Senator Eddie Melton. Last month, Melton filed a new piece of proposed legislation that’s designed to protect Indiana’s renters by giving them more legal leverage in disputes with landlords.

If approved, Senate Bill 524 would make a few notable changes to Indiana’s landlord-tenant law.

Under the terms of the proposed legislation, tenants would have 14 days—up from the current limit of 10 days—to pay past-due rent before a landlord could terminate their lease. Furthermore, landlords would be required to give renters at least 14 days’ notice in writing and an opportunity to correct lease violations before initiating eviction proceedings.

Landlords would also be required to give renters 48 hours’ notice before entering their rental units, and at least 60 days’ written notice before raising rent or making other changes to a rental agreement. Currently, landlords must only give 30 days’ notice before modifying a rental agreement.

If Senate Bill 524 is approved, tenants would also be legally allowed to withhold rent in the event that landlords fail to repair and maintain “essential services” that are required to keep the property safe and habitable. Finally, the bill would establish an Indiana Eviction and Prevention program designed to reduce the number of evictions statewide.

It’s currently unclear how much support the bill among other state lawmakers, and it’s still in the early stages of review by the Senate Committee on Commerce and Technology. You can view the complete list of proposed changes in Senate Bill 524 here.

New Multifamily Developments Push Rents Higher in Indianapolis

Downtown IndianapolisThanks to the city’s relatively modest rental rates and plentiful housing inventory, Forbes named Indianapolis the best city in the nation for renters in 2017. Now, as we near the end of 2018, a recent report from Indianapolis-based brokerage firm Tikijian Associates is shedding new light on the ways in which our city’s rental market has changed over the course of the past year.

While renters still have plenty of attractive options to choose from, a surge in multifamily development has set rental rates on an upward trajectory in many neighborhoods across Indianapolis.

Although the average monthly rental rate in Indianapolis sits at around $850, one-bedroom apartments downtown often cost upwards of $1,000 a month, according to the Indianapolis Business Journal. The market analysis from Tikijian Associates attributes this trend both to the recent increase in multifamily housing developments, as well as a tendency for property owners in desirable neighborhoods to make “high end” upgrades to existing properties.

“Between the rental market and sales and investment market, things are going very well,” said Senior Managing Director George Tikijian in a statement. “We’re pretty long into an economic recovery and have a low-interest-rate environment. Couple that with the tremendous demands across the board and what we’re seeing from rent growth … The market is strong.”

At AMG Property Management, we strive to help the property owners in our area make the most of their investments by filling vacancies, conducting maintenance tasks, offering advertising services and more. To speak with a representative about all the property management services we offer, feel free to give us a call or contact us online today!

Improve Your Property’s Curb Appeal Without Breaking the Bank

Home With Curb AppealLooking for ways to attract new tenants to your investment property? The home’s exterior is the first thing prospective tenants will notice, so this is typically a good place to start. Although some renovations like roof replacements and house painting can be quite expensive, there are other more affordable changes you can make that will significantly improve your property’s curb appeal. Check out a few of our favorite ideas below!

Pressure Wash the Exterior

Using a pressure washer to clean your property’s siding, shutters and walkways offers an easy to brighten it’s exterior and remove stuck-on grit and grime. If you don’t own your own pressure washer, you can typically rent one from your local hardware store. Just be sure to carefully regulate the PSI so that you don’t inadvertently remove paint or damage sensitive surfaces.

Paint the Front Door

As the main entrance to a home, the front door should serve as an attractive focal point that feels warm and inviting. If you can’t afford to repaint the entire property, you can start by updating the front door with a fresh coat of paint. Consider using a bold accent color that complements the color of the home’s siding.

Replace the Mailbox

An old, dented mailbox can distract from what might otherwise by an attractive property. New mailboxes start at around $20, so there’s simply no reason to let that old mailbox keep dragging down your home’s curb appeal anymore.

Update the Landscaping

There’s no better way to breathe new life into a home than by adding some new planters and flowerbeds. Try to select low-maintenance species that won’t require a great deal of work to keep up with after you put them in the ground.

At AMG Property Management, we can work with you to maintain your property so that it’s always looking its very best. To learn more, give us a call or contact us online today!

Zillow Finds National Housing Market Taking More Price Cuts

New ListingThe U.S. housing market has largely favored sellers for the past several years, but that trend could be about to shift according to a recent report from online real estate marketplace Zillow. Home value growth is finally beginning to slow in some of the nation’s hottest housing markets, and the share of home listings that have taken a price cut has increased significantly over the course of the past year.

Nationwide, Zillow found that about 14 percent of all listings had a price cut in June of this year, up about three percent from a low of 11.7 percent at the end of 2016. In some markets such as San Diego, however, the share of listings with price cuts rose by as much as eight percent in a single year. These price cuts have primarily affected listings in higher-priced markets thus far, while listings in some more affordable markets such as San Antonio have actually experienced a reduction in price cuts. Meanwhile, close to half of the nation’s 35 largest metro areas—including Indianapolis—have experienced a slowdown in home value growth since the beginning of the year.

“The housing market has tilted sharply in favor of sellers over the past two years, but there are very early preliminary signs that the winds may be starting to shift ever-so-slightly,” said Zillow senior economist Aaron Terrazas in the report. “It’s far too soon to call this a buyer’s market, home values are still expected to appreciate at double their historic rate over the next 12 months, but the frenetic pace of the housing market over the past few years is starting to return toward a more normal trend.”

For property investors in Indianapolis, this shift in the housing market could offer exciting opportunities to expand their portfolios with new rental properties. It might not be time to buy just yet, but it’s certainly a great time to keep a close eye on our region’s housing market. To learn more about how our property management services can help you make the most of your investments, feel free to give us a call or contact us online today!

Make the Most of Your Investment Property With These Tips

For Rent SignLeasing an investment property to tenants can offer a great way for property owners to generate extra income, but only if they make sound, savvy business decisions. When investment properties aren’t carefully managed, they can quickly wind up costing landlords money instead. Check out a few tried-and-true tips to make sure your rental property remains a profitable investment below!

Minimize Vacancies

The single most effective way to maximize a rental property’s profitability is to make sure it’s occupied by a tenant at all times. If a property is typically rented on a 12-month lease, each month of vacancy constitutes an 8.3% loss in annual revenue. With this in mind, you should always start looking for a new tenant as soon as your current tenant notifies you they will be leaving at the end of their lease.

If you’re having trouble finding a long-term tenant in a pinch, consider filling in the gaps with short-term options like Airbnb rentals. Giving your tenants the option to sublet the unit on a short-term basis can be another great way to avoid vacancies and maintain a steady flow of income.

Weigh Rent Hikes Against Turnover

Raising the rent might seem like an easy way to make your rental property more profitable, but if you’re not careful it could wind up costing you money in the long run. That’s because many tenants view rent hikes as a good reason to find a new place to live. Make sure you do some research before raising the rent to make sure it’s line with other comparable properties in your area. In some cases, keeping a loyal tenant at a lower rate can be more cost-effective than trying to find a new tenant to fill a vacancy at a higher rate.

Adhere to Your Late Fee Policy

Establish a fair, straightforward late fee policy in your lease and stick to it. If you don’t want to personally hassle your tenants for late fees, considering using an online payment service that automatically invoices tenants for late fees in the event that they don’t submit their rent payments on time. This way, your tenants will always have a clear understanding of your expectations and the repercussions of late payments.

At AMG Property management, we specialize in providing landlords with the tools and services they need to maintain successful, profitable rental properties. Give us a call or contact us online today to learn more!

Indianapolis Named Best City for Renters in 2017

Indianapolis SkylineIt’s a great time to be a tenant in Indianapolis, according to a report from Forbes published in 2017. Last year, Indianapolis topped the popular business magazine’s list of best cities for renters in the United States.

Thanks to the city’s affordable rental prices, steady economic growth and stable job market, Forbes recognized Indianapolis as the best city in the nation to rent a home.

The study found that the average rent in Indianapolis is just over $800, which accounts for only 17% of the city’s median household income. This makes it the second most affordable city for renters in the nation. But affordability wasn’t the only metric Forbes considered in the study; the city’s rental availability helped Indianapolis earn the top spot on the list as well.

In 2017, Indianapolis had a 5.6% apartment vacancy rate, compared to the nationwide average of 3.9%. This means that prospective tenants in Indianapolis have more apartments to choose from when it comes time to search for a new home. Renters in Indianapolis can also rest easy thanks to the city’s remarkably low rate of price hikes. Rental prices increased by an average of just 2.5% between 2016 and 2017.

Looking for a new rental property to call home in Indianapolis? You’ve come to the right place! You can find a variety of attractive, affordable housing options in our portfolio at AMG Property Management. Browse our available rental properties online, or give us a call today to learn more about any of the properties you can find on our site.

Upgrade Your Rental Property With These Affordable Renovations

Paint Cans

Staying on top of your rental property isn’t always easy. Maintenance can be costly and time-consuming, especially if your property needs extensive remodeling. If this isn’t the case, however, there a number of affordable renovations you can make that will not only give your property an attractive new look, but also increase its resale value.

A New Paint Job

This is one of the easiest and most beneficial improvements you can make to a property. A fresh paint job can have a transformative effect on the look and feel of a home, and eliminate blemishes that might dissuade prospective renters from signing a lease. Just be wary of color trends, and try to stick to a palette that will appeal to a wide variety of renters.

Modern Appliances

One thing that every prospective renter looks for in a property is the appliances. Is there a dishwasher? Does the property come with a laundry machine and dryer?

With this in mind, it’s worth investing in modern appliances that are safe and energy efficient. A new washer and dryer will use substantially less electricity and water than appliances made 10 years ago, for example. The upfront cost of new appliances can get a little expensive, but your investment may allow you to charge more in rent, especially if your property didn’t have similar appliances in the past.

Fresh Flooring

Has your rental property had the same wall-to-wall carpeting for too long? Is the old linoleum in the kitchen starting to bubble and peel? These days, you can laminate flooring options that are attractive, easy to maintain and very affordable. Tearing out that dirty old carpet and replacing it with new flooring can make your property far more attractive to renters.

Need a hand managing the day-to-day demands of owning a rental property? As a family-owned business with more than 25 years of industry experience, we’d be happy to help. Give us a call today to learn more!


Should You Require Tenants to Purchase Renters Insurance?

Should You Require Tenants to Purchase Renters Insurance?As a landlord, you have the option of requiring tenants to obtain renters insurance as part of their lease. Some landlords take advantage of this option and tell tenants that they have to get renters insurance as part of their rental agreement, while others leave it up to the tenants to decide whether or not they want to pay for renters insurance. Today we’ll consider a few good reasons to make renters insurance mandatory in your properties.

It will give you and your tenants peace of mind.

No matter how many precautions you take, there is always a chance that something bad could happen in a rental property. In the event of an emergency such as a fire or theft, renters insurance will cover your tenant and provide financial reimbursement for damages. This will give both you and the tenant a greater sense of security since you won’t have to worry about what to do if something bad happens.

It will protect you from potential lawsuits.

In the event that something bad does happen in your rental property, a tenant without renters insurance could potentially decide to file a lawsuit against you. Typically, tenants file these lawsuits out of desperation. Renters insurance can help you avoid this scenario by giving your tenants the ability to deal directly with an insurance company rather than trying to take you to court.

It will help you find responsible tenants.

Some people may scoff at the idea of obtaining renters insurance before moving into your property. These people are probably not the type of people you want as tenants. If someone is unable or simply unwilling to pay the small monthly fee associated with maintaining renters insurance, they might not make a good tenant anyway. You want renters who will take good care of your property, and obtaining renters insurance is one way for them to prove that they’re serious about being responsible tenants.

At AMG Property Management, we can work with you to find quality, thoroughly-vetted tenants for your rental properties. Give us a call to learn more about our property management services today!

Unique Benefits of Choosing to Rent, Rather Than Buy

Unique Benefits of Choosing to Rent, Rather Than BuyTo rent or to buy? This is a common question many people contemplate when looking for a new place to call home. Although you may dream of owning a home, there are some unique benefits associated with renting to consider, especially when it comes to cost-savings.

Minimal maintenance costs

When you rent a property, the landlord order property management company is responsible for maintenance and repairs. If there’s a leak or something breaks, it’s on them to shell out the money to fix it. If you own the home and you’re not prepared to do the work yourself, the cost of maintenance and repairs can add up fast.

You don’t have to pay real estate tax

Paying real estate tax is another responsibility of the homeowner that the renter gets to avoid. Depending on your location, the cost of these taxes can be quite high. There are many factors that determine the cost of real estate tax, but it’s safe to assume that the bigger the home and the more desirable the location, the higher the tax amount will be.

Avoid down payment and closing fees

Most people don’t realize just how many upfront costs are associated with buying a home. In addition to putting down a sizable down payment (ideally 20%), attorney fees, realtor fees and many other various fees add up to thousands of dollars in closing costs. Although you’ll have to put down a security deposit when you rent, you’ll likely get that money back when you move out. When you buy, you don’t get those upfront costs back, and they tend to be significantly higher.

If you live in the Indianapolis area and are looking to rent, AMG Property Management can help! Search our listings online or contact us today to get started!