Properly managing your properties is the only way to ensure your investments in the real estate market will be profitable. There are hundreds of variables involved with the adequate management of real estate properties. One of the most cumbersome yet vital aspects is the paperwork: property management forms, to be exact.
Thankfully, due to modern technology, the trees can breathe a sigh of relief since many forms are now digitalized and are not actually made of paper. However, regardless of their form, they still need to be filled out with accurate and highly sensitive information from you and your tenants.
Forms You Will Need From Tenants
For potential tenants, it helps to start thing off with a rental application. In return, you can provide them with the layout and specifications of your properties. These specifications should also include pricing for specific property sizes.
While applicants are deciding on their potential home or base of business operations, you can start organizing a series of documents you asked them to provide for you.
These documents should include but are not limited to the following:
- a valid driver’s license or state-issued ID
- a recent pay stub that provides the employer’s name and contact information
- a Social Security Number
All are needed to run a full background check on your potential tenant. These forms of documentation can vary depending on whether your tenant is looking for a residential or commercial property.
If they are looking for a commercial property, you need to ensure they provide a valid business license. Furthermore, you must ensure that the type of business they operate is in line with zoning ordinances imposed by local and state governments.
All this information will need to be integrated into a file system to keep track of your tenants. Property Management Software would be the most secure because you are housing sensitive information. Data will also be easier to access and retrieve when using the software.
Forms You Will Need to Give Tenants
After your potential tenant has decided on the right property for them and all of their information indicates they are a prime candidate for a rental, it is time to give them the most important property management form—the lease agreement.
A lease is a contract between a landlord and a tenant that establishes an agreement that a tenant will live in and pay the rent of a specific property for a designated amount of time. In return, the landlord has the responsibility of keeping the property up to code. That means the property is within reasonable habitable conditions for the tenant.
Both the tenant and the landlord are capable of causing a breach of this contract. For example, the tenant can breach the agreement by terminating the lease early or failing to make rent payments, which would generally result in an eviction.
Also, if the tenant is using the property as a commercial space, they need to have all the proper permits to conduct whatever kind of work they are doing. Finally, since it is your property, you need to decide what type of insurance you may be required to provide to protect your property and your return on investment.
The landlord can also breach the contract by not maintaining housing or building codes imposed by the state or other local governments. A constructive eviction will generally occur if a property is no longer habitable for the tenant. That means the tenant will be removed from the property, and the lease will be terminated. In this case, however, the tenant will have no responsibility to make further rent payments.
Forms Will Keep Coming, Even After the Lease Agreement
Some might think the paperwork stops coming after the signing of a lease. I hate to inform you that the forms never stop. This is especially true if you have several properties to manage. If you have multiple properties, the same tenant lease process will just repeat itself for as long as you are in operation. But I am sure you already know that.
Changes in the Lease
There are still forms to fill out for established tenants that also need to be considered. For example, tenants operating a business may want to expand or start new operations from within your property. That could mean new equipment, more employees, etc.
These variables can significantly affect the codes imposed on that building. So if you want to keep this tenant, you must ensure that everything is up to code during their changes. Additionally, all permits have been acquired, updated, notarized, and filed.
Maintenance Requests and Work Orders
Properties also need regular maintenance, and a proper work order would be the appropriate form to let your tenants fill out. It helps coordinate and schedule repairs seamlessly; additionally, it will be easy to determine who is responsible for the costs.
Rent Collection, Late Payment Reminders & Notices of Eviction
For residential properties and commercial properties alike, the collection of rent or lease payments is a vote process to your business. As stated earlier, this process my be done electronically, but it is still paperwork nonetheless.
Statements of missed or late payments need to be issued as well within a timely manner. That way, your tenants will be aware of their outstanding dues. Moreover, if a tenant is a candidate for eviction, they need to promptly be provided with an eviction notice. they need to know where they legally stand and what they need to do if they want to continue occupying your property..
The stress involved with maintaining property management forms will not pass in vain. All these forms are there to protect you and your tenants legally and financially. Forms are a means of holding you and your tenants accountable for your properties and your business.
All the responsibility may seem overwhelming, but there are tools like property management software to help you. Going paperless is the way to go for reasons of accuracy, accounting, and efficiency. Reduced handling time means less room for error, and having everything logged helps when it comes to tax time and other occasions when you may need that data all in one place.
Taking your office and your property management operations fully paperless requires very little effort. You just need to have the right software that offers greater convenience, accuracy, and ease of use.
Paperwork is essential in property management. Having all your transactions and activities documented sets your investments up for growth and success. It maximizes your return on investment and makes all of your effort worth it in the end.