Real Property Management Champion would like to introduce you to one of our clients. The following is a short interview with Mike J., where we asked him about his decision to partner with our firm and to share some of his thoughts and experiences. Mike and his wife Santana have a beautiful 3-bedroom home in Jacksonville, NC, that they lived in while stationed in the area. They moved away in 2019 to open their business, 360 Painting of Hampstead. They were evaluating whether to sell the home or keep it as an investment property when they transitioned out of the military. Becoming landlords was attractive to them, but they were not excited with the idea of finding and managing tenants on their own. As part of their research into owning and managing rental properties, Mike reached out to RPM Champion for more information. Ultimately, they decided to work with us, leaving them free to focus on operating their new business. Mike and Santana signed with Real Property Management Champion in March, and we were able to find highly qualified tenants in just over a week.
The tenants that signed the lease transferred to the area from California and were able to make their decision without personally seeing the home. This was one of our first properties that we did a virtual tour as part of our marketing program, and it was instrumental in securing these tenants. Here is an example of a virtual tour that is available to RPM Champion clients: Virtual Tour Demo
Colin: How did you find Real Property Management Champion?
Mike: Through the process of starting my own business, I was attending some networking events and met Debbie O’Connell through another contact. I got to know Debbie and Colin on a personal and business level at the same time I happened to be selling my house. In talking with my wife, we decided that renting out the house long-term made a good business opportunity for us. I told her that I already knew some property managers, and we started the process. I was already convinced because I knew them, and they won my wife over with their personalities and business strategy. After that, we gave the keys to them and kinda forgot about it – in a good way!
Colin: What was the deciding factor to hire us?
Mike: How much we didn’t have to do anything. I know that sounds funny, but we had recently started a business and were expecting a baby, so my wife’s agreement to renting out the house was that she wouldn’t have to worry about it. It helped that Colin and Debbie are awesome, but that was the real deciding factor. It wasn’t like, “Hey, you’re a random person that can manage my property,” it’s very clear what services they offer. The process is definitely a selling point, their personalities are a selling point, but it came down to the fact that we don’t have to worry about anything at all. We just check our bank account for the rent checks from time to time.
Colin: What’s your favorite benefit of using Real Property Management Champion? I think we might have just covered that in the last question.
Mike: It’s definitely the ease of the process and the stress level being so low. Something most landlords will say is that their highest stress level comes from renting out their own properties and tasks like that. So when I say that I’ve forgotten that we own another house, I’ve literally gone a week or so not even thinking about it. And obviously, we do make money off of the property, which why people get into rental investments in the first place.
Mike: When there have been any issues, y’all have just handled it. I think we had a small A/C issue recently, if I remember correctly.
Colin: Small for you! The tenants would have been out an A/C for about a week if we hadn’t come up with a solution.
Mike: That’s what I’m saying! By the time I learned about it, it was already handled.
Colin: How long do you anticipate being a client?
Mike: I don’t see a reason to not have a property manager for as long as we own that house. And I don’t foresee selling that house as long as it makes financial sense for us to keep renting it out. Which it definitely does at the stage in our lives that we’re at. So until we sell, we’re gonna be using Colin and Debbie, or whoever they entrust to take over their business, if that time comes.
Colin: Do you have any advice for anyone considering investing in a rental property?
Mike: Run your numbers. Always run your numbers, then re-run your numbers. One rental property doesn’t make you a lot of money, but if you have a bad experience with the first one, then you’re not going to want to invest in a second, third, or fourth one. So whoever you use to manage the property, make sure you trust them, and make sure it’s going to make you money before you rent it. Research it online or consult with someone like Colin and Debbie. I feel like they would have been honest with us if the house wasn’t going to be profitable, so trust a professional’s opinion.
Colin: Are there any pain points that we’ve either caused or alleviated?
Mike: No frustrations that I can think of. We get the rent payment on the 10th, so we recently changed our mortgage payment to the 15th to make that work out better. That’s all we’ve had to worry about. As far as pain points that you alleviate, I would say there’s a whole kit and kaboodle of issues that we would have had to worry about if we were managing on our own.
Colin: Were you worried about or affected by the pandemic in relation to your rental?
Mike: I never even thought about the fact that we started renting near the beginning of the pandemic. My wife and I did talk about the chance that no one would be moving during the pandemic, but the house we’re renting is in an area where renters are constantly coming in. It’s right next to a military base, so we didn’t really think that it would be an issue to find someone. We were more concerned with finding good tenants that wouldn’t wreck our house. Which I would say lends credit to Real Property Management’s system as far as the tenant screening. As far as our mindset with Covid, we figured we were gonna lose or make money either way, and we definitely weren’t going to make any money by just sitting on the house. We don’t believe in owning property unless it’s a good investment in the long run. So it wasn’t really an option to not rent it, and we figured that we were either going to profit or break even as a worst-case scenario. We also thought about the chance that the future renters would get their rent deferred due to Covid, but we talked to our mortgage lender, and they let us know that they were willing to work with us if that were to happen.
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