Opinions

March 10, 2017

Move Your Fulcrum

A few weeks back I wrote about 2017 as a fulcrum year…..if you missed it, here’s the link: https://danbaldini.com/2017/02/20/2017-is-a-fulcrum-year/ Since that post, a few enterprising individuals have emailed or PM’d me asking for more clarification on how they can make 2017 a great year fulcrum year for their rental operation.  (Actually, one of my more direct coaching clients comment was,“Baldini–I’ve read your article 3 times now…What the Hell are you talking about?”…….I love it when people are direct.) Here’s what I told them:  Move Your Fulcrum Imagine the classic teeter-totter from a playground.  It has a long beam with two seats at the ends and a fulcrum in the middle.  Well, if there’s a heavy kid on the one end, in order to lift the heavy kid up, you either have to have an equally heavy kid on the other end or use an immense amount of force to push down your […]
March 18, 2017

Sell it or Rent it? Just don’t let your head explode thinking about it….

The phone call or email or text exchange always happens this time of year.  It’s more predictable than what happens if you eat that Free gas station sushi and your digestive system. It always starts out with the landlord-angry-frustrated-pissed off-incredulous-beside themselves after they have sat down with their accountant or CPA and gotten the news about how much in taxes they have to pay on their total income for the past year.  They’re heads are about to explode like a Super Nova. Finally the question gets asked to me,”Should I keep renting this house or sell it?” It’s at this point that the serious, logical dialogue starts and it usually covers the full gamut of financial calculations, emotional reasons for each action plan, and finally a projection of the results for each. Ultimately, each landlord has to make that decision themselves.  But assembling the critical data to make an informed […]
April 7, 2017

Renters Now Rule Half of U.S. Cities

52 out of 100 largest U.S. cities were populated by more renters than homeowners in 2015, according to U.S. Census Bureau data. Think this may, just may, have serious financial implications for landlords, investors, and other stakeholders in these communities and beyond? Uhhhh, Yup. Here’s the full article published 3/23/17 about this trend: http://m.nreionline.com/multifamily/renters-now-rule-half-us-cities?NL=NREI-21&Issue=NREI-21_20170324_NREI-21_750&sfvc4enews=42&cl=article_4&utm_rid=CPG09000005928948&utm_campaign=8879&utm_medium=email&elq2=2497704fe62a40cbac47d1c8bd97e3b9 So, what’s the takeaway for you? We are in the midst of another mega demographic shift, but this time from multiple age groups.  Both baby boomers and Millennials this time around are contributing to this shift. The rental market should stay extremely strong through 2030.  That’s another 13 year bull market run for landlords. Home inventories will remain tight for renters to buy.  This means your renters who will soon become home buyers, will certainly be looking for an option to do an early lease termination.  Smart landlords will have their leases updated to offer this […]
April 10, 2017

Truths in Property Management

A number of years ago, I went to the Indy 1500 Gun Show with a buddy. He was in the market for a specific rifle; I was looking to buy a .40 caliber pistol. We wandered for two hours among the booths and tables and came upon a re-seller dealer from northern Indiana who was selling almost exclusively Glocks. And they were priced very aggressively. (Side note: If you’ve never been to a gun show, it’s truly one of the bucket experiences to complete, even if you’re not a firearms enthusiast. You have thousands of people walking around buying and selling and trading everything from firearms to ammunition to hunting and camping and survival gear to even jewelry. And every single person is on their best behavior saying,”pardon me” or “I’m sorry” or “excuse me” when they accidentally bump into you. Very polite and well-mannered people.) Anyways, I find a […]
April 25, 2017

If you are in the real estate business and don’t own rental properties….smh.

I was chatting with a lady at a local association meeting who was nervous about her retirement coming quickly in less than 10 years.  She was, as many folks just like her, not prepared financially to put up her spurs and sip on a fruity beverage on a beach.  After lots of dialogue, it hit me like a ton of bricks. This person owned zero real estate besides her home.  And she is a licensed REALTOR.   Why would a person in the industry not take advantage of the unique opportunity they have to increase their wealth?  It boiled down to ignorance and fear for her. Literally sat there shaking my damn head…. So, the question on the table is this: Should you invest in rental properties for income when you retire? My short answer is this: 90% of you in this audience probably fall into the damn ignorant stupid foolish category if you […]
May 20, 2017

Why did they do it?

The real estate market is having a record-breaking year. Agents are selling their listings in literally hours on the market instead of weeks and months. Yet when reading some of the comments on various social media posts like Twitter and Facebook, you’d think the world was falling apart, planets are about to collide and millions are about to die Agents complaining about how other agents aren’t changing their status in the BLC fast enough to reflect accepted offers. Agents complaining about how inspection responses from Buyers are ridiculous and out of control. Multiple offer scenarios and issues with paperwork. Buyers complaining about a lack of homes to buy. I’m calling Time Out.  Let’s all take a deep breath and drop our shoulders a half an inch before we all get a migraine.  Perhaps it’s time we reflect on just how damn good we have it.  We live and work in a […]
June 7, 2017

Can Anyone THINK anymore these days?

Freshmen and seniors at about 200 colleges across the U.S. take a little-known test every year to measure how much better they get at learning to think. The results are discouraging. At more than half of schools, at least a third of seniors were unable to make a cohesive argument, assess the quality of evidence in a document or interpret data in a table, The Wall Street Journal found after reviewing the latest results from dozens of public colleges and universities that gave the exam between 2013 and 2016. Ouch.  Double Ouch. https://www.wsj.com/article_email/exclusive-test-data-many-colleges-fail-to-improve-critical-thinking-skills-1496686662-lMyQjAxMTI3MDA4NjcwMzY0Wj/ I bring this new article to your attention for the following reason:  Rental properties involve, fortunately or unfortunately, human beings.  As I have written about human beings in other articles on this site, we are messy creatures–physically, emotionally, and mentally.  (I mean, come on….if we weren’t, we wouldn’t have jobs in leasing, property management, real estate, court […]
June 15, 2017

You’re Fired….and I’m not sad about it, either.

I’m generally a patient person.  Let’s face it….to succeed or even survive in property management and leasing you must have a reservoir of patience to interact with all the craziness of our industry. I’m also generally an understanding person.  Life happens, I get it.  We are all humans and screw up. So I’m a patient and understanding person…Until I’m taken advantage of by someone for these traits of generosity.  At that inflection point, I transform into what my title company rep infamously nicknamed me:  “BB Baldini.” Ball Buster Baldini. When I reach that level, the gloves come off and it’s not pretty to be on the receiving end.  So when a Client or vendor jerks me around for payment or is acting in an in-congruent manner with the expectations set between our two entities, it’s Go Time.  Unless resolved correctly, it ends with me firing them. Is that mean?  Is […]
July 7, 2017

All is Well….Nothing to See here….

Unemployment is down.  The Stock Market is soaring.  Everyone is happy. But should they be? It’s times like these when that trusty Spidey-sense starts to tingle…play the real estate investment game long enough, and you see the telltale signs of impending mayhem ahead: Everyone and their brother suddenly thinks real estate is easy money.  (We can tell by the phone calls and referrals we get on this qualitative point.  And the calls and referrals are coming hot and heavy right now….) Folks who shouldn’t be buying rental properties are buying them up faster than Fidget Spinners. (Always a dead give away when the question gets asked,”How many months of PITI do you have in reserve for when this property goes vacant?” and the buyer has that deer-in-the-headlights-look.) Banks easing their lending standards to allow for more marginal buyers. (No income, no doc loans are back.  Yes, seriously, they are.) Yup….it’s […]
July 11, 2017

Professional Development

October and November begins the next round of jet airplanes and hotels for conventions for me.  Coming up are the annual conventions at NAR and NARPM.  (NAR=National Association of REALTORS; NARPM=National Association of Residential Property Managers).   These events are opportunities to add some jewels to the aging Crown of Knowledge and also exceptional networking events with leaders from all over the country and world.  Here’s a brief list of some of the convention sessions I plan on attending: Business Development Session – Empowering Teams and Individuals Ethics Future-Proofing Your Business Buying, Selling and Expanding Your Reach Office Policies & Procedures for Managing Litigation Top 10 Operational Reports for your Business Lawsuit Waiting to Happen – Navigating HUD’s New Guidelines for the Use of Criminal Records in Rental Decisions 7 Steps of Successful Leadership Maintenance – Tips from the Trenches – War Stories & Lessons Learned Take a guess which one […]