I'm sure this will give some of you heart palpitations, but I'm finally accepting that I'm to the point now where I think process documents are necessary for my business. Currently, I own and self-manage 14 rentals and 1 AirBnB in Columbus, OH, and for the last 7 years, I'll openly admit that I've run these properties as more of a hobby than a business. Sound familiar to Brandon's books? I currently have a full-time job and have gotten by doing things the way I have.
Lucky for me, the time is nearing where landlording and being a full-time REA this will be my full-time job, and I can no longer be the mid-20's landlord that runs things so loosely, so I've started to develop process documents. I just keep thinking- if something bad were to happen to me, would anyone know how to run my business other than myself? My first target was the "Qualifications" document, which I'm sure most of you know just outlines what it takes to rent from my properties.
My question in all of this is- what are your businesses process documents that you just simply can't imagine not having? I, of course, have a lease, pet agreement, and now a qualifications document, but what are your other go-to's that you'd recommend I start to create for my business? Anyone willing to share examples of theirs?
Thanks as always!
Oh come on, I can't be the only one experiencing this! HA.
Hey Brad. I'll hop on and chime in.
For the sake of time management I typically try and hold a few open houses when marketing my rentals. I't is a huge time saver allowing me to meet all potential residents but not have to spend a massive amount of my time setting up and going to rental appointments.
At the open house I bring a few things..
1. A stack of "we buy houses" business cards. I always try and work into the conversation that I offer a $1000 finders fee for any home I buy with everyone I meet.
2. A stack of rental qualification checklists with the specific requirements for the subject property. (Income Req's, Credit Score, and the like are all on the checklist) This will help politely weed out any potential applicants that do not qualify.
3. A stack of RID documents. (Resident Information Documents) This is a document that I came up with that is essentially a "soft" rental app. It gathers very basic information including "why are you moving", "what is your current income", "who will be living with you", and a number of other similar questions.
As potential residents enter the home I greet them, tell them to look around and suggest that they grab a business card and a rental requirement checklist from the kitchen counter. Before they leave I ask interested potential residents to fill in the RID so that I have some of their most basic information if they do choose to move forward.
By the end of one or two open houses I typically have a small stack of RID documents filled in by qualified residents and can begin following up with the most qualified prospects.
Another thing I like to use is a CRM to manage my small rental portfolio as well as relationships with contractors, vendors, etc. I'm not sure if you use a CRM or not but I've been using Realty Juggler and though it's not perfect by any stretch, its easy to use, works well for my small business and hits a price point at $99/year...
Anyway, great question. I definitely hope others chime in. I would love to hear about the systems/docs others are using in their businesses!
Excellent feedback, thanks Grant. I also do open houses- the number of no-shows at a property quickly made me stop doing 1 on 1 showings. Any chance you'd be willing to share the RID document with me? Obviously I'll make it my own, but would love to have an idea of what others are doing!
Good call on the CRM- I currently do not have one, and with 14 rentals it's getting a little tough.
My pleasure my friend. I think you asked a great question. I’m surprised there isn’t more feedback. Maybe no one wants to share their trade secrets?? lol
Yes, definitely get a CRM right now. Mine has been a huge game changer. Realty juggler is very easy to use and very inexpensive.
I’d be more than happy to share my RID. It’s no frills but allows me to easily collect a great deal of basic information from potential residents without using a full blown rental app. If you inbox me your email address I’d be more than happy to send it to you on an editable word document.
Haha that could definitely be. I know we all do business a little differently, but I'm also surprised there isn't a bit more feedback.
I would recommend taking the time to create customizable forms. Pay a little upfront for a decent PDF editor (I use Foxit) and then you'll never have to buy online forms again. That being said, a few of the key forms i keep are a lease template, pet addendum, walkthrough inspection, a welcome packet, adverse action, and then I make sure to save the ads that i use to list each rental so come vacancy i don't need to rewrite them every time.
There are others but those are the ones i use most often.
You don't own a business until you have processes and documentation and you can remove yourself from the process.
I probably have more documentation and process down for my airbnb than I do have for my 4 unit.
Like "How to clean my place, ordered by steps", "Calendar invites", "canned responses for arrival and departure, etc", "Guest book"
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