RHJ Blog

The Rental Housing Journal blog features thought provoking information and opinions on the multifamily property management and real estate investing industries. RHJ staff editorial, multifamily executives, top real estate investors, and real world industry subject matter experts share best practices, trends and news about investing in real estate, managing apartments, being a Do-It-Yourself landlord, multifamily technology, apartment marketing, Fair Housing and landlord - tenant law, flipping houses, advancing your career in property management, how to market and sell to property managers and real estate investors, new products and services for property managers, financing investment properties, where to find good tenants, how to hire great property management employees, how to choose vendors, best practices in property maintenance and much more.

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John Triplett's picture

6 Reasons Why Tight-Knit Community Matters To Property Managers

why community matters in resident apartment complexes

A tight-knit resident community can make a big difference for a property manager in handling the many issues that come up in managing a community.

Last month the folks from Buildium.com did a webinar to present a guide they have put together on how to build a resident community.

By John Triplett

Rental Housing Journal

How building and nurturing a resident community culture can help owners and property managers keep tenants loyal to your properties, and help you attract tenants, is the subject of a guide by Buildium.com.

Buildium.com did a webinar last month in which Darcy Jacobson, director of content marketing and Chad Mirmelli, customer success manager, discussed how creating a community culture can be good for business.

Larry Arth's picture

Landlords Gifts For Tenants Can Create Great ROI For The Holidays

Landlords gifts for tenants can help your ROI

Landlords gifts for tenants can change the stereotype of landlords as money-hungry people who just want their hard-earned cash. Veteran landlord and investor Larry Arth shares his story on landlords gifts for tenants.

By Larry Arth

After I was married 33 years ago, my gift-giving list during the holidays grew exponentially with all the additional mother-in-law, father-in-law, brothers, sisters and even aunt and uncle in-laws. I remember after an exhausting day of shopping and purchasing the final gifts telling my wife, “Whew, glad to have that done.”

Her reply was, “What are you doing for all the tenants?”

John Triplett's picture

Landlord, property managers bullied and harassed over rent increases

Landlord and property managers have been bullied by tenant activist protesters in Portland

Tensions are rising between landlords and property managers, and tenant activists. Landlords and managers have been bullied over rent increases. And they face unpleasant demonstrations from activists as Portland struggles with a shortage of housing and rapidly rising rents.

By John Triplett

Rental Housing Journal

A Portland landlord says he and his property managers have been bullied and intimidated over rent increases after he purchased a small apartment building and had to raise existing rents to afford his new mortgage payments.

He said demonstrators have picketed his personal residence. The have placed notices on the doors of neighbors, camped overnight on his lawn, defecated on his lawn and marched into his property managers’ offices scaring the staff, according to his spokesman, John McIsaac. 

John Triplett's picture

The Housing Crisis Is A Problem The City Helped Create

A landlord's view on the Portland housing crisis

Landlord Landon Marsh provides this editorial opinion on the housing crisis and his thoughts on the recent controversy between his rental increase, his property management company and the tenant activists. See the full background and story here.

By Landon Marsh

Portland Landlord

When I read Oregon State Representative Tina Kotek’s op-ed piece, “Oregon's housing crisis too big to ignore, back in October, it stopped me in my tracks. Not because the headline or the overall sentiment was incorrect, but because she has oversimplified a complex issue with nearly Donald Trump-like rhetoric, and that’s just not fair to renters, property managers or building owners.

Kristin Flores's picture

5 Things To Consider Before Moving Into A Tiny Home

tiny home may be one answer to high rents

A tiny home can be something to consider with rents going up and up in some parts of the country.

If you are thinking about a tiny home, here are a few thoughts to consider.

By Kristin Flores

With the rise in popularity of tiny homes and the current odd goings on in the world, my fellow millennial buddies and I have been chatting about packing up, moving out and building our own tiny home commune.

Upon initial research, this fantasy of ours didn’t seem so outlandish. Affordability of custom construction/limiting our debt amount, ability to relocate at any moment’s notice and minimizing our environmental footprint; all of these sounds like it’s right up our alley!

But the deeper I’ve dug, the more I’ve uncovered a number of subtle nuances that comes with transitioning into a tiny home.


Why Property Managers Are Skeptical When Tenants Decline Lease Offers

Property managers should be skeptical of tenants who decline conditional lease offers

Property managers want tenants who will be excited about their lease offers.

When you decide to extend a lease with a conditional offer, and the tenant declines, then what?

What do you think that means? Blogger Ellen Calmas has some ideas to share.

By Ellen Calmas

It’s pretty obvious that occupancy drives revenue, and leasing (among other things) drives occupancy.

What’s less obvious is that there are times it makes more sense to let a prospective lease walk away.

Property owners and managers spend millions of dollars annually screening prospective residents to gain better insights into their ability to afford, retain and adhere to the specifications of a lease.

Screening results in a rejection, an acceptance without conditions, a conditional lease offer, or a lease offer with mandatory requirements.

Larry Arth's picture

7 Things To Check Before You Raise Rent

7 things to check before you raise rent

When to raise rent is a question many landlords ask themselves. Sometimes it comes up when a tenant leaves. Other times it comes up when a landlord gets an increase in taxes or insurance. Veteran investor and landlord Larry Arth takes on the issue here:

By Larry Arth

Rents have been increasing and it is a great time to be a landlord. In fact, landlords have been enjoying some of the fastest growth in rental rates in recent history. But you want to be aware there is a cap to that growth and we have begun to see this in some markets already.

Rental demand has continued to remain very strong, which allows landlords to be bullish on rental rates.

The questions investors are now asking about rents are:

  • “How high can they go?”
  • “For how long can we raise the rates?”

Great questions, and one needs to look deeper at the market in which you are investing to find the answers.


3 Safeguards For The Growing Tide of Roommate Renters

3 safeguards to consider for renters who are roommates

Renters who are strangers and yet will be roommates can present a challenge for leasing apartments.

Here are 3 safeguards to consider when renting to these types of occupants.

By Ellen Calmas

While individual renter households represent the highest volume growth since 2007, non-family roommate renter households have grown at almost twice the pace, or 2.9 percent over the same period, according to recent Axiometrics data.

 That’s an increase of 20.7 million “non-family” households consisting of either one person or two or more roommates, representing growth of 330,000 people per year sharing apartment homes – and potentially a lot of hassle for communities that don’t have clear policies in place.

John Triplett's picture

7 Questions Landlords Have About Pets and Pet-Friendly Apartments

Pet-friendly apartments and a question and answer guide for landlords

A Guide For Landlords

Summary: With 72 percent of all renters now having pets, the trend toward pet ownership is only going to grow. Owners, landlords and property managers may want to consider whether pet-friendly apartments and a welcoming pet policy may be the best way to deal with the issues. Here is a guide to the issues and comments from apartment owners, property managers and The Humane Society of the United States

By John Triplett

Rental Housing Journal

One landlord said in a recent interview that the companion pet issue in particular is one where he just does not know where to go to get the right answers.

He said he understands service animals, but when it comes to things like assistance animals, companion pets and emotional support animals, he is confused by the terms.

And he said it seems like today tenants “can get a note from anyone” and “I have to accept their pet.”

The Editors's picture

Is My Uber Driver Holding Back the Housing Market?

what my Uber driver taught me about housing

John Burns in his real estate consulting business helps housing executives keep up with where the market is headed. He writes frequently that the definitions of Millennials, Gen X and Baby Boomers are frequently too broad in how to understand and target these groups.

By John Burns, CEO and Mikaela Sharp, Research Analyst

Why are so many young adults today willing to make perhaps the biggest commitment of all—having a child together—before getting married? Does this recent societal shift tell us anything about young adults’ willingness to commit to a 30-year mortgage?

I recently had a conversation with an Uber driver who shed light on the younger generation’s choices.


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