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As we rapidly move into 2023, there are many considerations on the minds of those in the real estate industry, including landlords. The past year has been one of change, with experts predicting more challenges for the general real estate market and the rental landscape. If you’ve been playing the game for a while, you’re probably aware that what’s happening now is part of a cycle where things will eventually level out and stabilize again. But if you’re anything like me, you want to experience more short-term success as a landlord today. Here are some suggestions for resolutions to make 2023 a successful year.
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Invest in technology to grow your business and property
As a business founder and owner, I am acutely aware of the importance of making investments to experience continued success. As an investment property owner, upgrading technology within a rental property is a great place to start. Current and future tenants will appreciate investing in a property, whether it’s upgrading kitchen appliances, installing security systems like Ring doorbells, upgrading in-unit washing machines, providing fiber optic internet connections (if available) or installing artificial intelligence technology that can ease tenants’ lives, and may choose to stay in these upgraded facilities.
Also consider investing in a technology platform to help you manage your rental properties. This investment can make your life and work easier as a landlord or property manager and allow you to archive all your documents electronically.
Depending on the technology platform you decide to invest in, additional benefits may include accepting online rent payments, scheduling maintenance and property inspections, marketing vacant properties with a single click, and streamlined security deposit or surcharge features.
Your time is valuable—invest in a platform that makes life easy for you and your tenants. Do your research and find the best platform for your unique needs.
Related: 6 Big Tech Challenges for Remote Real Estate Firms
Provide tenants with easily accessible information
Whether you’re considering investing in technology or upgrading your rental management system, providing tenants with readily available information is a gesture of goodwill. If the technical route doesn’t work for you, it’s often important to have a good filing system in place for each tenant’s important files. If a tenant has a question about their lease or has a simple question, you’ll have easy access to that information.
Even better, some systems provide tenant portals so they can access their information at will. In my years as a landlord and rental property owner, I have found that the easier you can make things for your tenants, the more likely they are to keep renting from you. Turnover is one of the most important expenses for a rental property, so it’s worth the investment.
Related: 5 key deal points to know before signing a lease
Prepare for continued increases in rent and property prices
The past year has taught us that the real estate market can be volatile. Many landlords and property managers across the country are struggling to keep properties occupied and collect rent due to rising rent costs, mortgage rates and home prices. As inflation increases, a plan must be in place to avoid difficulties such as late or non-payment of rent.
Seek advice from industry veterans and research how you can improve your aggressive business plan to avoid difficulties if you can. Plans can be developed or existing ones improved over time, learning and improving through personal experience or the experience of others in the industry.
Retaining Employees in the Current Economic Conditions
At Rentec, we are fortunate to have a high employee retention rate, even after 13 years of growth. I cannot stress enough how important it is to retain talent, especially in the current economic climate. Be sure to have a plan in place to retain employees and make sure they are happy with their jobs for the next year. Small gestures go a long way. After a long week or a tough project, a simple thank you card is appreciated and valued by many.
If possible and within your budget, set aside funds to treat your staff. Offering a meal or small work retreat at a local park strengthens bonds among employees and is a great way to create an environment that encourages people to work hard. Combining such posturing with fair compensation, including a competitive salary and benefits package, can help improve retention and overall satisfaction. One of the most important actions I’ve found to take in this regard is to create open two-way lines of communication between leadership and employees, creating an environment of collaboration and teamwork.
Related: 10 Strategies for Hiring and Retaining New Employees
While none of us know what to expect in the coming year, there are steps you can take as a landlord, property manager, or any other business owner to achieve all of your goals. Investing in technology, creating efficient processes, observing market trends and focusing on employee satisfaction can all help.
Remember that resolutions don’t always have to be immediate; rather, they can be implemented over time on your optimal schedule. Even small improvements can have a profound impact on any business. I encourage you to get the most out of 2023 by starting to plan and consider the options that are best for your business and investment property.