My husband and I have been investing in Michigan for several years now. Cities like Detroit are gold mines for investors IF you do your homework and have a reliable and trustworthy advocate right here (a must for long distance investors). We often hear from investors both nationally and internationally. Many, in fact, right here on BP. :-)
For Detroit, M investors, these are the most common issues we've come across:
- You take on a new property manager who is eager to take on your rental. You pay a large set-up fee and after 3-6 months, rent stops, no communication, difficult to get a hold of.
- Your told the tenant's left and all goes quiet and later find out tenant has been paying PM in cash and the PM is pocketing the money.
- You pay for repairs and then hear little to nothing and receive no pictures to confirm repairs
- Your told PM is a licensed realtor (as per state and federal law) but in fact is acting outside of the law.
- You agree with the management to pay monthly towards your property taxes only to find out your years in arrears and no payments have been made.
- When you do manage to switch to a new PM company, the old PM cannot produce leases current, PM has misplaced keys, tenants deposit has miraculously disappeared, house was left "unsecured" and thieves have removed all copper plumbing from the house and/or there's a squatter who's taken up residence.
Only a licensed real estate person can legally manage other people's property. If they are not an Associate Broker or a Broker, you must obtain written confirmation from their Broker that they will supervise the real-estate salesperson. Always ask for a copy of their real estate license and check the expiration date. Also, only those who are registered members of the National Association of Realtors can be called a "Realtor" or a "Realtist". This association holds each licensee to a higher standard.
We have helped many investor's, a large percentage of whom are international, try to sort out their investment property challenges. Most of them have experienced all of the previously mentioned and much worse still. In fact, several have lost their properties to the city because they trusted their PM to pay the taxes.
Personally, I've been through four property managers who were disappointing. The good news there are some legitimate management companies who are not out to rip you off. We finally found one we are actually happy with! Here's why:
- Does NOT charge me an upfront set up fee
- Associate Broker for Keller Williams
- Charges for routine maintenance and minor repairs can be taken from rent so I don't have to pay money upfront
- The guy in charge of their maintenance and repair crew is a former building has over 23 years of experience in construction, home inspection and building maintenance.
- They are easy to get a hold of.
- They are very professional, contact me every week to keep me informed on progress of my most challenging rentals.
- They are very knowledgeable and help steer me clear of "questionable" areas for future investments.
- They've also helped out a few BP'rs with their properties and I've gotten good feedback which of course, is a big deal to me.
I'd like to point out that although Detroit has the same challenges that any large city would have, the biggest issue is locating a legitimate PM who's not out to take advantage of a long distance investor. A knowledgeable investor is better protected and knows what to look for in a PM, what documents to ask for (i.e. licenses), how to check on licenses and their status, etc.
wow this sounds like this post belongs in the Marketplace forum.
Like people don't know that already. I also have been in contact with out of state and country investors. The thing is I am not doing it to make more money off of them.
This sounds like an advertisement to try to drum up more business.
HAHAHAHA are you not the same one that called Detroit "rowdy"
who are the good and bad ones if you don't mind? Im vetting some out. Pm me. Please
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