Wednesday, November 26, 2014
One thing you may not consider when renting an apartment, condo or home is the management structure of who you are renting from. However, whether you rent from a property management company, a single investor/landlord, or an apartment with onsite management can greatly affect your experience.
When you rent from a property management company, you are working with a team of professionals who have processes in place to handle all the parts of renting. From applications, to viewing apartments, to handling maintenance requests in a timely manner, property management companies have personnel who specialize in fulfilling the needs of renters. On the other hand, if you are dealing with a badly managed property management company or one that has to go to the landlord for every single little question, there may be a lot of waiting to have your requests fulfilled.
If you are renting a home, condo, or apartment from an individual owner, you have the benefit of actually having a personal relationship with the person you rent from. Your landlord may even be your neighbor or roommate. This may provide more flexibility in making requests such as asking for a shorter term or month-to-month lease. An individual owner also may be more likely to allow you to make changes to an apartment, such as painting the walls. By renting the unit themselves, a property owner will save money and will most likely pass those savings on to you. On the other hand, an individual owner may be overwhelmed by trying to do it all themselves and so you may have to wait longer to get back to you. They also may see your unit as simply an investment and may not prioritize your needs.
Onsite management combines the best of both worlds in many ways. You have professionals whose job is dealing with renters, like a property management company, and someone with whom you can have a personal relationship, as with an individual investor/landlord. Maintenance requests should be dealt with in a timely manner, as there is someone onsite both to process the requests and usually to complete them, and you know your rent will be marked as on time because you can directly hand it to a real person. They will also be able to handle the application, viewing and leasing process easily because they are pros.
Posted by Ingrid Evens at 10:12 AM
Labels: property management styles, what property management style is right for you, what property management version is best for renters
Monday, November 24, 2014
We are often asked how we can help you find an apartment for free. The answer is that we are paid by the apartment communities when you sign a lease. Apartment Communities have spend a lot of money on advertising to reach potential renters, but these television, internet, radio and print ads all cost a lot of money and don't guarantee that the potential renters they reach will be qualified to rent in the community.
When we meet with you, we both vet apartments for you and vet you for the apartment complex. We discuss your needs in an apartment and any roadblocks you may have to getting an apartment, such as a low credit score or past broken lease, and will only take you to communities where we know they will work with these limitations. When you walk into an apartment complex with an apartment locator, the leasing agent at the complex knows that you at least meet their minimum qualifying guidelines to lease an apartment. You have already seen pictures, know the amenities offered at the complex and basically you have narrowed this down to a stop on your list. So the leasing agent can focus on really showing you around, and showing the amenities of their community.
An apartment locator can narrow down the choices to what works for you and will only show you apartments that have units that meet your criteria. If you want wood floors and a garden tub, you may waste two days worth of gas and time going to 15 apartment complexes that have wood floors, but they don't all have garden tubs. With an apartment locator, we can rule out complexes that don't fit your criteria right in our office and spend our time only visiting in person those complexes that have what you want. We also know which complexes have vacancies, so we won't waste your time showing you apartments where there's not an available unit that meets your needs.
Wednesday, November 19, 2014
After you've been approved to lease an apartment, the landlord or leasing agent will offer you a choice of lease terms, usually one or two years, although some complexes offer shorter 6 month terms as well. Think through what lease length makes most sense for you withAbout.com's questions.
One year is the term that most renters choose because it's long enough to make a decision as to whether you like a place enough to continue living there, but also short enough that you aren't stuck there forever if you don't like your living situation. At that point you should have the option to renew your lease if you do like where you are.
There are advantages to a two-year lease, however. For one, if your landlord wants to raise the rent when it's time to renew, you'll save money by being locked in for two years rather than one. If you live in a market where rents are on an upward trend, this can add up to substantial savings. You'll also be able to relax knowing that you don't have to move for 24 months and your landlord can't rent your apartment to another tenant.
Need help deciding what lease term is for you? Give Austin Apartments Now a call today at 512-258-8224 for help with the particulars of leases and renting.
Thursday, November 13, 2014
The holidays are coming up fast, and if you like to throw parties, you're going to have spills and accidents. Handle the inevitable without breaking a sweat with Apartment Therapy's Emergency Cleanup Kit.
Throw these items in a portable caddy so you'll be ready for anything: a sponge or microfiber cloth, a small handheld broom and dustbin, countertop cleaner, soda water (for stains and in case you run out at a gathering), salt (use with soda water as a stain remover), laundry stain stick or wipes for spills on clothes, and masking tape for picking up tiny bits of broken glass.
Wednesday, November 12, 2014
Millennials, the generation following Generation X, are the newest renters and are different in many ways from past generations. Slideshare reports on how Millennials are unique and what they are looking for in apartments.
First of all, over 76% of Millennials have cats or dogs. By being a pet-friendly apartment complex, you can ensure they will consider your community when looking for housing.
The average Millennial drove 23% less in 2009 than in 2001, which was the biggest drop for any age group. By providing bike storage to your renters, you can attract this group that doesn't feel tied to their car.
10.8 million Millennials have kids and need rentals to fit that lifestyle. Amenities geared towards children like playgrounds and green spaces can go a long way towards attracting this segment of the apartment hunting population.
38% of Millennials would rather pay online and 22% of them have never written a physical check. So providing the option to pay rent online will appeal to their digital payment lifestyle.
Millennials consider safe streets to be the highest priority when searching for a place to live. By focusing on security conveniences like security cameras and alarm systems, you can reach the 76% percent of this age group who consider safety their top priority.
Millennials are highly likely to use reviews and ratings to make decisions on where they live and what businesses they frequent. They are also more likely to share bad experiences than good. So be sure to keep your renters happy so they are more likely to share their good experiences on review sites.
Millennials are heavy texters, so as a property manager, if you are easy to reach via text, you are more likely to keep them happy.
Finally, Millennials see outdoor living spaces of equal importance to indoor ones. So make sure to have lots of outdoor areas where your inhabitants can get together and enjoy the sunshine.
Friday, November 7, 2014
Most people don't love doing laundry, but it's a necessary evil and it seems never-ending, especially if you have kids. Apartment Therapy's tips will help you find sanity in a world where laundry always needs to be done.
Do a load of laundry a day. Of course, some people may not have enough dirty clothes to do laundry every day, but if you have children, you'll probably find this necessary to keep up.
Follow through with each load of laundry from start to finish. In other words, you put a load in the washer, then you put it in the dryer or hang it to dry, then you fold it or hang it, and put all the laundry away. Otherwise you wind up getting backlogged at some point in the process and suddenly your couch is covered in unfolded towels. A helpful tip is to set a timer for how long your washer and dryer take so you remove your loads promptly.
Figure out where you always break down in the process and concentrate on fixing it. Maybe you never get your laundry out of the dryer, or maybe you get it folded, but you never put it away. Whatever it is, meet that sticking point head one and make sure you follow through!
Make a process that works logically. In other words, think about how you will put the laundry away before you put them away. Group like items together by destination so you can simply put them up once they are ready.
Finally, make laundry fun, or at least as fun as possible. Play some music, watch a favorite tv show while you are doing it or reward yourself when you're done to give you something to look forward to!
Wednesday, November 5, 2014
The Apartments Across America Annual Conference was recently held on October 23rd and 24th in Washington, DC. Austin Apartments Now is a member of this organization, which brings together the leading apartment finding agencies and brokerages focused on rentals from across the country. At the conference, rental industry professionals are able to share their knowledge on marketing, acquiring and retaining talent, and technology with one another.
Some highlights from the conference specific to the Texas Apartment Market were that Austin sees the most rentals each year, but Houston has seen the most growth in development. In Houston, there will another 12,000 luxury apartments added by the end of the year across the city.
Natalie Young, from our sister office A Plus Apartments, attended the conference and their website won best website.
The next Apartments Across America Annual Conference will be in October of next year in Chicago.