Investing in Rental Properties

April 20, 2012

Should You Buy A Foreclosed Home?

In the last few years, the foreclosure market has become an increasingly important segment of the Indianapolis real estate market. In 2012, more than one million homes nationwide are expected to enter some stage of foreclosure, which means a huge number of bank-owned properties will be available for savvy buyers and investors. But is buying a foreclosed home really a good idea? Read more
January 22, 2015

Pull the trigger and ride the bullet.

If you are going to fire a gun, there is an old saying:  Pull the trigger and you ride the bullet. In other words, you take full responsibility for what happens not just at the time when the bullet blasts out of the muzzle of the gun, but for the entire flight of that bullet–where it goes, what it impacts, and beyond. In real estate investing, responsible investors practice this principle.  They know full well that they, NOT someone else, is responsible for everything that occurs on/in/around their units.  In addition, they are responsible for making sure that they have the financial resources available to fix things that go wrong, replace parts that wear out, and the shear guts to make the tough decisions. Also in real estate practice, responsible agents practice this principle.  It has become quite fashionable for agents to provide counsel to Buyers and Investors on the […]
July 18, 2015

Fewer Renters Can Afford to Own–Great news for Landlords!

As real estate investors, opening up the Wall Street Journal can sometimes cause a panic attack. But in June 2015, this article came out giving most investors a sigh of relief and even a tingle down their leg. Spoiler Alert:  You’re going to make good money for a number of years to come if you play the market smart. http://www.wsj.com/articles/new-housing-crisis-looms-as-fewer-renters-can-afford-to-own-1433698639 Here’s a few bullet points if you don’t have time to read the entire article (but please read it eventually…) The U.S. homeownership rate is below where it stood 20 years ago when President Bill Clinton launched a national campaign to encourage Americans to buy homes. Conventional wisdom says the rate, at 63.7%, is leveling off to where it was for decades before the housing-market peak. The declines reflect a surge of new renter households, which is boosting rents. Together with tougher mortgage-qualification rules, this will leave households stuck between homes they […]
August 17, 2015

Are Residential Rental rates going up?

This is one of the Top 3 questions asked whenever I speak with Landlord and Investors. The answer to this simple question is anything but simple. As with any measurement, the answer is always two words:  It Depends. It depends on how you measure rental rates and what data points you are using.  Below are some of the ways we track this information on the portfolios we manage: Rent per square foot New Move-In rental rates Renewal rental rates Year-over-year blended rent inflation:  This is a method of tracking rent rate growth based on rent growth for new move-ins and renewals.  It ‘blends’ the first two rates since both rates operate off materially different consumer behavioral patterns. Stabilized Occupancy: While this is not exactly a measure of rental rate direction, it is a worthwhile tracking mechanism to observe how a portfolio is performing.  This is the occupancy level reached by a […]
August 24, 2015

Your Rental property is not worth what you think it is…

August 24, 2015 Today’s New York Stock Exchange activity was historical. Ouch. We may be in for continued volatility for the near term in the equity markets, which reminds me of how this relates to your rental properties… When I speak with new potential clients, the conversation usually goes something like this…. Property Owner: “I’d like to rent out my house, but I need to get at least $1500 a month because we bought it at the height of the market in 2008 and owe too much on the mortgage still to sell it. Can we get that amount for the house?” Me: “Well, according to the market comps and the demand for your house, I don’t think we can get anything higher than $1300 a month.” Property Owner: “But you don’t understand. I NEED $1500 a month in rent.” Me: “I certainly appreciate your needing to maximize the revenue […]
October 2, 2015

Millenials ARE INDEED moving to suburbs….and the impact on mass transit plans

Over the past few years, State and city officials have been GaGa over introducing enormous plans for mass transit to Indiana and Indianapolis, specifically.  The  most recent projections I’ve read include the estimate of approximately $1.1 Billion over the next 10 years. The urgency behind such a huge undertaking?  The theory that Millennials aren’t moving to the suburbs, but only want urban areas to reside and they demand mass transit, otherwise they will not relocate to Indy. In other words, it’s about trying to attract them to Indianapolis for high paying jobs. Uhhh…..only one small tiny problem with their hypothesis:  they have zero quantitative data about this projected human behavior pattern on which they are gambling tax payer money. Today’s Wall Street Journal doesn’t help their argument either.  Case in point:  Millennials are the FASTEST GROWING class of car buyers.  Here’s the entire article: Somehow, their choo-choo train idea seems to […]
October 9, 2015

Use your rentals to help pay for kids college

Did you know there are options to use rental properties to help pay for your kid’s education? Here’s an article describing the IN’s/Out’s on exactly this strategy: Using Rental Property for College Education Expenses As always, if we can assist, call or click. Dan Baldini is the Founder of Polaris Real Estate & Polaris Property Management, LLC and has been an Adjunct Professor in the College of Business Finance Department at Butler University in Indianapolis where he taught Real Estate Investing. Dan focuses his practice on the residential real estate markets including Indianapolis, Carmel, Zionsville, Fishers and other surrounding areas. Dan continually seeks out new resources for Team training and education in order to keep all the Team members skills on the leading edge of real estate best practices. He is an active real estate investor himself, owning and managing a portfolio of investment properties in the Indianapolis markets. A resident of the Northside area since 1979, Dan […]
January 30, 2016

Foreclosure Report Q4 2015 for Indianapolis areas

The most recent numbers for Q4 2015 foreclosures are published.  Here’s a link to the full report:  MIBOR_FSS_2015-Q4 If you’ve been having trouble finding that ‘value-add’ property, this report will give you the insights…. As always, I’m here to assist if you need help. Dan Baldini is a leasing and property management coach. He helps Landlords and Property Managers streamline their rental operations to maximize earnings, so they can achieve Financial Freedom faster.  He is also the Founder of Polaris Real Estate & Polaris Property Management, LLC and has been an Adjunct Professor in the College of Business Finance Department at Butler University in Indianapolis where he taught Real Estate Investing. He is an active real estate investor himself, owning and managing a portfolio of investment properties in the Indianapolis markets.  He has been active in real estate since 1996 with a specific focus on rentals and investment properties. Dan also is a licensed real estate Continuing Education […]
March 9, 2016

Housing Market Recovery–Split like Charles Dickens classic….

Today’s WSJ published an article about the US Housing Market recovery diverging into two recoveries.  Reminds me of the Dickens classic a bit…. Essentially, lower priced inventories are vanishing fast while inventory on the higher end piles up.  While on the surface this might seem like “Economics 101” (and it does reflect some of that light) there is more to the story, especially as it relates to your rental portfolio positions and future purchases. WSJ Housing Market Takes on Split Levels 030816. Here’s some of the highlights from the article: On the low end, after a slow recovery from the housing bust, first-time buyers are finally returning to the market, bolstered by still-cheap mortgages. But after years of little new construction, inventory is still tight. High-end buyers, meanwhile, are more sensitive to the stock market’s struggles this year.           So…..how does this information impact your rental […]
April 12, 2016

Liar Loans making a Comeback….future opportunity to buy more Rental units?

Have you seen this movie yet? If not, don’t worry….you will soon possibly be re-living it in just a few years. According to this WSJ article, similar loans are coming back around. (ADA Moment here:  Did ANYONE on Wall Street or in the lending world learn a damn thing since 2008 real estate meltdown?) Sigh….. Ok, now that I have that out of my system, here’s the link to read the entire article.  Liar Loans making a comeback Here’s my thoughts on this situation: Keep some of your powder dry.  With the reintroduction of these types of higher risk loans, this implies there will be good opportunities in the next 3-5 years to pick up more distressed properties. Greed is good….for you and I to take advantage of others hubris and ignorance.  Just make sure you don’t get too greedy.  Pigs get fat–hogs get slaughtered! Take stock of your current […]