Friday, November 25, 2011

What do renters want? Amenities of course!

Chicago Property Management Firm
Even as rental markets tighten, competition for the best tenants (read: the ones who aren’t newly bankrupt) remains fierce. Savvy property investors looking to attract the high-income segment of the rental population are still “piling on amenities” according to a recent article from the web site Finance & Commerce.

Along with the usual suspects—granite counter tops, stainless steel appliances, and other high-end finishes—renters are gravitating toward properties that include such conveniences as on-site fitness centers, luxurious indoor and outdoor communal spaces, housekeeping services, underground parking, and attached restaurants.

According to the article, renters want “magic” and are willing to pay for it, while property investors who are willing to make the upfront investment in creating these luxury spaces reap long-term rewards that include lower-than-average vacancy rates and rental rates that are often two or three times the local average. The Minneapolis property Mill District City Apartments, for example, is able to charge up to $2600 per month in an area where typical rent is around $900. Even more surprising?? All of the building’s 175 units are full, and so is the waiting list.

Want more information on Amenities that landlords should provide? Give us a call!

Monday, November 21, 2011

When Should a Landlord Hire a Property Management Company? Now!

One of the biggest decisions a landlord will make during their years as property owners is hiring a property management company. Smaller complexes are still managed by the landlords themselves or with the help of an employee, but even in a small complex, corporate or residential, landlords may need more help than they think. This is exactly the time hiring a property management firm makes the most sense.

Not only are property management companies a huge asset to the company as a whole, but the elevated level of care taken with the complex can make it a more appealing place to live or conduct business, making the complex itself more lucrative for the landlord. Carefully review the following points to see if hiring a Chicago Property Management Firm is right for your business.

The PMC's Role in Your Business
One of the biggest questions landlords typically have is, 'what do you do?'. Property management companies deal one on one with tenants and potential tenants including rent collecting, maintenance and repairs, complaint handling and dealing with evictions, leaving you more time to pursue marketing and other property investment opportunities.

When to Hire a Property Management Company
It is never a bad decision to hire a property management company, but as a real estate investor, it is up to you to determine whether it is the right investment for your business as the service can sometimes be expensive.  

You should hire a PMC if:

1. You have several properties and/or rental units
2. Your time is limited.
3. You don't want to/like hands-on management.
4. You can afford it!
5. You don't live close to your properties.
6. You suddenly find yourself with too much to do and not enough time to do it.
7. You don't want to be an employer.

If you fit into one of the many reasons you should hire a property management firm, give MK Assets a call to speak about how we can help you get the help you need with your real estate investments.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Renters and Landlords Beware: Scams are abound!

A few weeks ago, there was a televised warning for renters and property owners to beware of rental scams so naturally, we're letting you know! Too often, we only hear one side of the story though: tenants. However, the story went on to benefit the property management community in that it didn't completely slam us. It actually praised the benefits of using a credible and licensed property management agency instead of doing it on your own. 

Here's the run-down on the Tenant version.

Typically, there are internet scams where businesses or con artists lease out properties that don't actually exist. Wow! The other side of the coin is that the property does actually exist, but it isn't available for lease of purchase due to the fact that it isn't owned by the advertiser. The con artist(s) then ask the applicant to supply all of their most personal details: social security number, current address, name, birth date, bank accounts, employers, the whole nine yards. They are also asked to pay upfront upon approval of their application. The scammer then supplies fake identification, in some attempt to look legitimate. This should be the first red flag. The next step: the applicant is sent tenancy agreements from the property owners 'lawyer' requesting money sent to an overseas account. The applicant signs the agreement, sends the money and typically...never hears from anyone again.

Rental scams are entirely too easy to set up and are typically fronts for other more devious criminal activity. The obvious is identity theft. So make sure you do your homework and deal directly with the verified property owner or property management firm

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Notable Rental Trends: Multi-Family 2011

Chicago Property Management

There is a recent article from regarding the multi-family rental sector. They bring up several interesting points on the overall rental market trend. Below you can read a few of the more interesting points they've made.

1. There has been a reversal in home-ownership trends.
    As this rate falls, there is a direct increase in the demand for rental properties. As a result, vacancies in apartment buildings have declined significantly.

2. Vacancy rates among managed rental buildings have declined.
   In fact, they're at their lowest rates since 2007.

3. Freddie Mac Speaks
    The Chief Economist, Frank Nothaft, said, "The improvement in the economics of apartment management has prompted an increase in structure values, property sales and new construction for larger buildings". 

4. The Under 30 Demographic
   There is a sharp decline in home-ownership in owners who are under 30.

5. Price of Rentals has increased.
   Since the demand of rental space is growing, so is the asking price for monthly fees. It's the first  rise since the recessionary period of 2008 to 2009.

Friday, November 4, 2011

MK Asset Management: Our Handbook

In order to get to know us a little better, we thought we'd share with you some of what our Chicago Property Management Firm uses to make our company and your properties run as smooth as possible. You can download this or look at it on your computer.

>> MK Asset Management Handbook

Feel free to look through this handbook, or call us with questions!