Archive | October, 2011

Introduction Letter to Existing Tenants

25 Oct

In anticipation of our upcoming duplex ownership, I prepared an introduction letter to the existing tenants that we’ll put in the mail the day we close. This letter serves several purposes:

    • First Impressions and Goodwill:  We began by informing tenants of the completed purchase, thanking them for their cooperation with inspectors and appraisers, and including some background information about us + a picture. The more tenants see us as average people (instead of the L word) the better they’ll probably treat our property, and the more patient / flexible they’re likely to be when we need it most. We also offered assurances that their security deposit was transferred to us during the sale.
    • How to Pay Rent:  Particularly because closing will be towards the end of the month, we need to inform the tenants ASAP where and how to pay next month’s rent. We want to use a service called erentpayment.com, so we included a note about how this service is a win-win and we’re hoping they agree. More to come on that later.
    • Exchange Contact Information: We included a blank tenant information form, a homemade 2″x3″ business card printed on cardstock with our contact information, and a self-addressed postage paid envelope. The tenant information form simply asks for email addresses and phone numbers, and their preferred method of contact.

You’re welcome to download a copy of this letter and the tenant information form here, but I’ve also included the text of the letter below.


Month DD, YYYY

Dear Name,

Your New LandlordsGreetings! We wanted to take this opportunity to introduce ourselves. Your unit was purchased by us on [DATE]. We sincerely appreciate your assistance and patience during the inspection and appraisals that were necessary to complete the purchase.

A little about us: we’re a soon-to-be-married couple who live and work in Austin. This is our first investment property, and we look forward to meeting your housing needs!

Our Contact Information

  • Name: [Name] & [Name]
  • Address: 123 Main Street  City, ST ZIP CODE
  • Email: youremail@email.com  (*preferred method of contact)
  • Phone: 555-555-5555
  • Included are business cards with our contact information for easy reference.

Rent Payment

  • We would like to use a rent payment service called eRentPayment that automatically
    deducts rent from an account of your choosing on the 1st of the month.
  • This service offers a win-win situation: it saves time, postage, hassle and avoids
    late fees – and we are paying the transaction fees associated with using this service.
  • To register, please visit www.erentpayment.com:
    • Click on the Register link (upper right-hand corner) and complete the form.
    • You will receive an email containing your password (you may change this later).
    • Enter the checking or savings account you wish to use for rent payments.
    • Enter your unique Renter Code in the specified field and select Enter to add your unit to your profile.  Your Unique Renter Code: XXXX
    • Please register in a timely manner to prevent any issues with your rent payment on November 1st.
    • Definitely let us know if you have any concerns about using eRentPayment.

Security Deposit

  • Rest assured, your security deposit of $875 was transferred to us at closing.

Maintenance Requests

  • Please notify us of items in need of repair using the contact information above – we will do our best to remedy the situation as soon as possible.

Tenant Information

  • Please complete the attached Tenant Information Sheet and return in the self-address stamped envelope provided so that we know the best way to reach you.

Property Inspection

  • We would like to inspect and address some minor concerns noted in the inspection. Once we’ve received your Tenant Information Form, we will contact you to find a mutually-agreeable time (weekends are usually best for us). Or feel free to contact us first at youremail@email.com.

Please feel free to contact us anytime with any questions or concerns.

Sincerely,
Name & Name

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Final Countdown to Investment Property Ownership!

13 Oct

Pending any unforeseen circumstances, we’ll be closing on our first investment property on October 20th. The process thus far has consisted of 40% investment property books, 30% Excel formulas, 20% leap of faith, and 10% luck. Hopefully this is the first of several (many?) ventures, but alas real estate empire building is necessarily a slow journey.

Invesment Duplex

Our (Soon-To-Be) First Duplex!

I admit, I have a tendency to nerd out on topics I become interested in. Lately I’ve been absorbing all things landlord, but I’ve yet to find a passionate, online community that shares this specific interest.

I’ve only scratched the surface, but investment properties (like any other small business) require a plethora of decisions.  Given my natural tendency to “maximize” situations, my mind often idly ponders the best way to approach these challenges.

To that end I created Rental Realities – a place for other landlords to exchange strategies and ideas, successes and failures.  There’s a lot left to learn – and they say the best way to learn is to teach – so the goal is of this blog is to become a resource for both myself and other landlords using real estate to achieve their goals.

Onward!

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