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Nicholas Marion
  • Rental Property Investor
  • Winnipeg, Manitoba
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I am new to bigger pockets and I just bought my first rental property!

Nicholas Marion
  • Rental Property Investor
  • Winnipeg, Manitoba
Posted Sep 19 2023, 17:30

Hello everyone! My name is Nicholas and i am 20 years old.


I've been listening to bigger pockets podcasts and keeping up for a while but I've just now finally joined!

I bought my very first property (a duplex) this week that I will be using as a rental! I am super pumped because it took me a while but it was a good adventure.


I am thinking of working with a property manager since i don't want to mess up too badly but it will also be a great way to learn if i can work alongside a pro for my first time.

I will not lie, I am a bit overwhelmed with everything that needs to be done in terms of getting all the right connections and doing everything to start my journey of real estate investing on the right foot. I have accounted for a property manager as well when I did my numbers and I will still be cash flowing.

I would greatly appreciate any advice anyone has for someone starting out like me.

Thank you!

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Ryan Muska
  • Lender
  • Saddle Brook, NJ
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358
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Ryan Muska
  • Lender
  • Saddle Brook, NJ
Replied Sep 19 2023, 18:46

Wow, 20 yrs old and already have a Duplex! That's awesome! 

Congrats on being a RE Investor!

Make sure to account for capital expenditures! I like to put 20% aside of each month's rent specifically for that!

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Michael Smythe
Property Manager
#3 Personal Finance Contributor
  • Property Manager
  • Metro Detroit
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Michael Smythe
Property Manager
#3 Personal Finance Contributor
  • Property Manager
  • Metro Detroit
Replied Sep 20 2023, 03:10

@Nicholas Marion

Encourage you to learn from the mistakes of others - by reading posts here on BiggerPockets about owners not having their expectations met by their current Property Management Company.

To avoid going through the same poor experience, keep reading.

Even if someone give you a referral, don’t make the mistake of assuming that PMC will meet your expectations, just because they met the expectations of the referral source.

We also can’t believe how many owners hire the first PMC they speak with!

Then they complain their expectations aren’t being met!

In our experience, the #1 mistake owners make when selecting a Property Management Company (PMC) is ASSUMING instead of CONFIRMING.

It's often a case of not doing enough research, as they don't know what they don't know!

Owners mistakenly ASSUME all PMCs offer the exact SAME SERVICES and PERFORM those services EXACTLY THE SAME WAY, so price is the only differentiator – and they often select the first PMC they call!

So, the first question they usually ask a PMC is about fees - instead of asking about services and HOW those services are executed.

EXAMPLE: PMC states they will handle tenant screening – what does that specifically mean? What documents do they require, what credit scores do they allow, how do they verify previous rental history, etc.? You’d be shocked by how little actual screening many PMC’s do!

This also leads owners to ASSUME simpler is better when it comes to management contracts.

The reality is the opposite - if it's not in writing then the PMC doesn't have to provide the service or can charge extra for it!

We have a 14-page management contract that we've added our real experiences to over the years, with the intent of protecting both us AND the landlord. Beyond the Monthly Management, Placement & Maintenance fees, all other fees in our contract are IF EVENT -> THEN fees.

We don’t know any PMCs to recommend in the area mentioned, but since selecting the wrong PMC is usually more harmful than selecting a bad tenant, you might want to read our series about “How to Screen a PMC Better than a Tenant”:

https://www.biggerpockets.com/member-blogs/3094/91877-how-to-screen-a-pmc-better-than-a-tenant-part-1-services-and-processes

We recommend you get management contracts from several PMCs and compare the services they cover and, more importantly, what they each DO NOT cover.

EDUCATE YOURSELF - yes, it will take time, but will lead to a selection that better meets your expectations & avoids potentially costly surprises!

P.S. If you just hire the cheapest or first PMC you speak with and it turns into a bad experience, please don’t assume ALL PMC’s are bad and start trashing PMC’s in general. Take ownership of your mistake and learn to do the proper due diligence recommended above😊

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User Stats

6
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Nicholas Marion
  • Rental Property Investor
  • Winnipeg, Manitoba
2
Votes |
6
Posts
Nicholas Marion
  • Rental Property Investor
  • Winnipeg, Manitoba
Replied Sep 20 2023, 03:21
Quote from @Ryan Muska:

Wow, 20 yrs old and already have a Duplex! That's awesome! 

Congrats on being a RE Investor!

Make sure to account for capital expenditures! I like to put 20% aside of each month's rent specifically for that!


 Thank you! I've been working construction since I was 16 to save up, so I'm just happy I'm now actually a part of this business!

by capital expenses, do you mean things like, roof needing to be replaced, or something breaking? Costs that aren't "expected"?

User Stats

6
Posts
2
Votes
Nicholas Marion
  • Rental Property Investor
  • Winnipeg, Manitoba
2
Votes |
6
Posts
Nicholas Marion
  • Rental Property Investor
  • Winnipeg, Manitoba
Replied Sep 20 2023, 03:23
Quote from @Michael Smythe:

@Nicholas Marion

Encourage you to learn from the mistakes of others - by reading posts here on BiggerPockets about owners not having their expectations met by their current Property Management Company.

To avoid going through the same poor experience, keep reading.

Even if someone give you a referral, don’t make the mistake of assuming that PMC will meet your expectations, just because they met the expectations of the referral source.

We also can’t believe how many owners hire the first PMC they speak with!

Then they complain their expectations aren’t being met!

In our experience, the #1 mistake owners make when selecting a Property Management Company (PMC) is ASSUMING instead of CONFIRMING.

It's often a case of not doing enough research, as they don't know what they don't know!

Owners mistakenly ASSUME all PMCs offer the exact SAME SERVICES and PERFORM those services EXACTLY THE SAME WAY, so price is the only differentiator – and they often select the first PMC they call!

So, the first question they usually ask a PMC is about fees - instead of asking about services and HOW those services are executed.

EXAMPLE: PMC states they will handle tenant screening – what does that specifically mean? What documents do they require, what credit scores do they allow, how do they verify previous rental history, etc.? You’d be shocked by how little actual screening many PMC’s do!

This also leads owners to ASSUME simpler is better when it comes to management contracts.

The reality is the opposite - if it's not in writing then the PMC doesn't have to provide the service or can charge extra for it!

We have a 14-page management contract that we've added our real experiences to over the years, with the intent of protecting both us AND the landlord. Beyond the Monthly Management, Placement & Maintenance fees, all other fees in our contract are IF EVENT -> THEN fees.

We don’t know any PMCs to recommend in the area mentioned, but since selecting the wrong PMC is usually more harmful than selecting a bad tenant, you might want to read our series about “How to Screen a PMC Better than a Tenant”:

https://www.biggerpockets.com/member-blogs/3094/91877-how-to-screen-a-pmc-better-than-a-tenant-part-1-services-and-processes

We recommend you get management contracts from several PMCs and compare the services they cover and, more importantly, what they each DO NOT cover.

EDUCATE YOURSELF - yes, it will take time, but will lead to a selection that better meets your expectations & avoids potentially costly surprises!

P.S. If you just hire the cheapest or first PMC you speak with and it turns into a bad experience, please don’t assume ALL PMC’s are bad and start trashing PMC’s in general. Take ownership of your mistake and learn to do the proper due diligence recommended above😊

Thank you for the great advice! This is exactly what I needed to educate myself on right now, I'll take a look at how to screen PMC's!

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Replied Sep 20 2023, 07:00

Congrats on your first property!

There are a couple things I'd like to mention. It starts off with how involved you want to be. If you have a full time job and don't have much free time then maybe hiring out a PMC is the best call, but if you have enough time on your hands it wouldn't hurt trying to manage it by yourself because that's the best way to learn. Since its only a single property, it shouldn't be too hard to keep track of everything - people tend to hire PMCs when they have a growing portfolio that they can no longer keep track of themselves. If it makes you feel any better I manage my own properties and I'm 22, so I'm sure you can handle one at 20! The best way to learn is through experience but totally understandable if you want to hire management for your first go around. It definitely can be overwhelming at times but it is a simple game. Screening tenants properly is one of the most beneficial things you can do to set yourself up well for the long run.

Feel free to reach out if you want to connect or would like any more advice, I'd love to help!

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Nicholas Marion
  • Rental Property Investor
  • Winnipeg, Manitoba
2
Votes |
6
Posts
Nicholas Marion
  • Rental Property Investor
  • Winnipeg, Manitoba
Replied Sep 20 2023, 07:14
Quote from @Sam Clemente:

Congrats on your first property!

There are a couple things I'd like to mention. It starts off with how involved you want to be. If you have a full time job and don't have much free time then maybe hiring out a PMC is the best call, but if you have enough time on your hands it wouldn't hurt trying to manage it by yourself because that's the best way to learn. Since its only a single property, it shouldn't be too hard to keep track of everything - people tend to hire PMCs when they have a growing portfolio that they can no longer keep track of themselves. If it makes you feel any better I manage my own properties and I'm 22, so I'm sure you can handle one at 20! The best way to learn is through experience but totally understandable if you want to hire management for your first go around. It definitely can be overwhelming at times but it is a simple game. Screening tenants properly is one of the most beneficial things you can do to set yourself up well for the long run.

Feel free to reach out if you want to connect or would like any more advice, I'd love to help!

Thanks for the tips/ encouragement! I would love to do it myself but I work about 80 hours a week in the next province over for three quarters of the month, every month😅.

That is the main reason I am getting a PMC since I won't be readily available at all times. if it weren't for that I would definitely do it myself, especially for my first one since, like you said, it's a great learning experience!

User Stats

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Replied Sep 20 2023, 10:28
Quote from @Nicholas Marion:
Quote from @Sam Clemente:

Congrats on your first property!

There are a couple things I'd like to mention. It starts off with how involved you want to be. If you have a full time job and don't have much free time then maybe hiring out a PMC is the best call, but if you have enough time on your hands it wouldn't hurt trying to manage it by yourself because that's the best way to learn. Since its only a single property, it shouldn't be too hard to keep track of everything - people tend to hire PMCs when they have a growing portfolio that they can no longer keep track of themselves. If it makes you feel any better I manage my own properties and I'm 22, so I'm sure you can handle one at 20! The best way to learn is through experience but totally understandable if you want to hire management for your first go around. It definitely can be overwhelming at times but it is a simple game. Screening tenants properly is one of the most beneficial things you can do to set yourself up well for the long run.

Feel free to reach out if you want to connect or would like any more advice, I'd love to help!

Thanks for the tips/ encouragement! I would love to do it myself but I work about 80 hours a week in the next province over for three quarters of the month, every month😅.

That is the main reason I am getting a PMC since I won't be readily available at all times. if it weren't for that I would definitely do it myself, especially for my first one since, like you said, it's a great learning experience!

 What city are you from? I can give you some recommendations, and I happen to work at a property management company

User Stats

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Nicholas Marion
  • Rental Property Investor
  • Winnipeg, Manitoba
2
Votes |
6
Posts
Nicholas Marion
  • Rental Property Investor
  • Winnipeg, Manitoba
Replied Sep 20 2023, 12:19
Quote from @Sam Clemente:
Quote from @Nicholas Marion:
Quote from @Sam Clemente:

Congrats on your first property!

There are a couple things I'd like to mention. It starts off with how involved you want to be. If you have a full time job and don't have much free time then maybe hiring out a PMC is the best call, but if you have enough time on your hands it wouldn't hurt trying to manage it by yourself because that's the best way to learn. Since its only a single property, it shouldn't be too hard to keep track of everything - people tend to hire PMCs when they have a growing portfolio that they can no longer keep track of themselves. If it makes you feel any better I manage my own properties and I'm 22, so I'm sure you can handle one at 20! The best way to learn is through experience but totally understandable if you want to hire management for your first go around. It definitely can be overwhelming at times but it is a simple game. Screening tenants properly is one of the most beneficial things you can do to set yourself up well for the long run.

Feel free to reach out if you want to connect or would like any more advice, I'd love to help!

Thanks for the tips/ encouragement! I would love to do it myself but I work about 80 hours a week in the next province over for three quarters of the month, every month😅.

That is the main reason I am getting a PMC since I won't be readily available at all times. if it weren't for that I would definitely do it myself, especially for my first one since, like you said, it's a great learning experience!

 What city are you from? I can give you some recommendations, and I happen to work at a property management company

I'm from Winnipeg Manitoba, in Canada. Thanks!

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Sloane Kraftsow
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  • New York, NY
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Sloane Kraftsow
  • Lender
  • New York, NY
Replied Sep 20 2023, 12:21

Wow this is amazing! Congrats, I am 22 and am inspired by you.