Message Board Rules & Regulations as well as Good Tips for Young & New Property Managers Hello all New Members of the National Association of Black Property Managers (NABPM). This message-board is where users of the website come together and exchange ideas and insights about real estate investing, as well as alert each other to deals out there that are available. If you know about an excellent piece of property available at a “steal” of a price and would like to alert members of the NABPM Community, this is the place to do it. Before we get to chatting back-n-forth about real estate investments and things of that nature, I have always found that in these public forums it’s always best to laydown a few rules first. So here’s a couple of things to keep in mind going forward on the NABPM Message-Board: #1. This is a place for serious business people to have serious discussions about real estate investing and about other investing such as stocks, bonds, cryptocurrencies, gold, foreign currencies. If it’s an area of investing that intrigues you it’s going to be discussed here on the message board. If you’re a tough-guy or a tough-gal who likes to get into combative arguments over the computer, this is NOT the place to get your internet “thug” on. That’s a no-no. If you and another NABPM member get into any kind of disagreement on the Message-Board that seems to be turning heated, send them a message with your phone #, the 2 of you call each other and hash it out over the phone like grown adults. The biggest thing about these discussions over the internet is that people tend to want to “show-out” over the computer simply because they’re aware that they are in front of an audience…….in other words “the camera is on”, and we all know that people behave differently in front of the camera than they do when the camera is off. We all are a little guilty of falling into that trap. So rather than 2 people “playing to the crowd”, let’s take the discussion off the computer and talk it out over the phone so that there’s no need for misunderstandings……….plus, over the phone is where people can stop being so “uptight” and can have a down-to-earth discussion about things. This ain’t Love & Hip Hop, or Married to Medicine or Real Housewives of Atlanta. #2. We’re going to have people from all kinds of backgrounds on here. Some of us come from the streets………some of us come from middle-class backgrounds……….some of us come from wealthy backgrounds. ALL are welcome, regardless of where you come from. But at the end of the day, the one common denominator about the people that join this site is that they will all be business-owners & investors…….serious businesspeople. Some of them will be Christian, some of them will be Muslim, some of them will be Jewish, some of them will be Buddhist, some of them will be Hindu, some of them will be Atheist, some of them will be Agnostic, some of them will be Hotep, some of them will be Gay, some of them will be Straight, some of them will be Republican, some of them will be Democrat. We don’t care where you come from, what your sexual orientation is, what your religious or non-religious beliefs are nor what your political affiliation is…..we don’t care about NONE OF THAT STUFF…..Why? Because none of that has anything to do WITH BUSINESS…..none of it puts money into anybody’s POCKETS….also when you come up on this message-board let’s make sure that we refrain from the potty-mouth expressions. Now don’t get me wrong, we understand that some of you “occasionally” curse to get your point across (me included), but what we don’t want is to be slapping our members upside the head with a whole lot of profanity in these discussions. If you just have to curse to get your point across, be sure to “abbreviate” your curses………..a$$ instead of ass………$–t instead of shit………f–k instead of fuck……….._itch instead of bitch………..muthaf–ka instead of muthafucka. Based on experience, the thing that I’ve found is that even the most religious people are willing to overlook abbreviated curses, especially if you ask them to “please forgive my French” or to “please excuse my language” or better yet say “God forgive me” after you use your abbreviated curse word. Always try to bear that in mind as you type out your messages on here. #3. Regarding the Rating System for Property Managers, for anybody wondering “Exactly what is the Property Manager Rating System?” It’s those 9-11 questions that you get graded on, that’s the Property Manager Rating System. The thing for you NABPM Property Managers to be aware of is this. Your rating can be Edited and changed by the Property Owner(s) that grades or grade you. Now that can work “for” you……and that can also work “against” you. If you receive a low score from a Property Owner(s), but a year or so later you have seriously improved your performance, that Property Owner(s) can go back onto the NABPM website and change your score to a higher score to reflect your improved performance. Be advised that it can go the opposite direction as well. If you get a high score from a Property Owner(s) but a year later your performance turns piss poor, that Property Owner(s) can go back into the website and change your score to a lower score to reflect your negative change in performance. Always keep that in the back of your mind. Scores can be edited to reflect either improvement, or to reflect steps backward. Some business etiquette for brand new/young NABPM Property Managers Here I want to talk about business etiquette for you NABPM Property Managers just starting out, because as NABPM Property Owners we’re going to be aiming for the youth among our African American and African community to take a serious look at becoming Property Managers. So that being said, as a number of you who become Property Managers are going to be below the age of 30 and new to the profession, you’re going to need to understand a few things about the Property Owner/Property Manager relationship. First…………One thing that you always have to recognize is that property management is no different from any other kind of business in this regard, which is, there are no friendships in the world of business. You’re going to have Property Owners on this website that are very good to do business with, and you’re going to be able to depend on them from a business standpoint, but no matter what, don’t ever get into a habit of getting “personable” or “familiar” with your Property Owners, and definitely don’t get into a habit of getting “personable” or “familiar” with your tenants….never ever ever EVER get chummy with tenants. Those are 2 huge no-nos. Your Property Owners are your clients…………..your business partners. So there’s no room for you hanging out with them in social settings………..there’s no hanging out at the club with them………your kids may attend the same schools or your families may attend the same church, mosque or synagogue, your wives may get their hair done at the same beauty salon, your husbands may play golf at the same golf course, but when you see them in those settings you say “Hello” and keep it moving…………there’s no going on trips out of town with them that are not business related………there’s no attending plays, ballets or concerts with them…….there’s no hanging out at pro sporting events with them……there’s no getting intimately or sexually involved with them……there’s none of that. Trust me, you’re pooping where you eat when you do things like that. The relationship between Property Owner & Property Manager is about one thing and one thing only…………money. Don’t ever “fool” yourself into thinking it’s about anything other than that. No matter how “cool” you think you are with your Property Owners, you miss one or two payments at the beginning of the month to them and your sunken NABPM Rating will reflect just how “cool” you all really are. Y’all ain’t never “cool” when you miss payments!! Don’t ever get that twisted………and be sure to remind your tenants to not ever get that twisted either cause if they think they can “manipulate” you to get you to go soft on them, OR intimidate you into going soft on them, you can best believe they’ll try. Tenants can be like your children where they try to manipulate you OR they can be like sharks where they try to go “schoolyard bully” on you in an effort to intimidate you, and it’s always in an effort to reach 1 goal….to get you to allow them to get away WITH NOT PAYING WHAT THEY OWE. Not all tenants but “some” of them are looking for a place where they can stay rent-free. Make sure you’re always letting them know that NOBODY stays at this property rent-free….NOT ON YOUR WATCH. Every now & then you come across tenants who simply understand how things work….they understand that they are the tenant, not the boss and that their two duties are to #1. Pay the rent every month on time and #2. Keep the place clean and don’t trash it. If only that were the case for the majority. Quite often you will find yourself having to remind tenants that you’re the property manager, NOT their employee OR their child and that if they think they’re going to intimidate you that “they’ve got the wrong one”. And when it comes to tenants, never forget one thing………..when they fail to pay, they’re not failing to pay just the property owner……….they’re failing to pay “both of you”. Never forget that. You represent the property owner’s interests only and you’ll always find yourself having to remind tenants that all you are is “an extension of the owner”. When you go onto the Home Page what you see are 3 “hypothetical” Property Manager profiles for Eyitayo Agbaniyaka, Lloyd Tucker and Angela Harris. I had the web designer to put those on there just to give you an example of how the Property Manager Directory will look. Eyitayo Agbaniyaka, Lloyd Tucker and Angela Harris are not real people. But anyway, for those of you just getting into the profession, you’re already acutely aware that out of the 3 hypothetical Property Managers, the highest paid one obviously is Angela Harris simply based on how high NABPM property owners have scored her. That’s the Property Manager you want to “be like”…………at the very least you want to be like Eyitayo Agbaniyaka because any score over a 3 is considered “pretty good”. But Angela? She’s the type of property manager whose phone rings non-stop. In fact, she’s turning down Property Owners simply because she’s booked solid and has upgraded to managing apartment complexes only. She doesn’t even manage houses anymore. Property Managers like that run a tight ship. They hire………..but they also fire those who aren’t pulling their weight around their property management firm. Not only is she on top of things but everybody who works for her is also on top of things. She doesn’t play, and those who work for her “know it”, and the tenants definitely “know it”. Angela is the best of the best……….Angela is “The Truth”. But the Property Manager you do not want to be like is Lloyd Tucker. Lloyd is sitting there saying that he wants to expand to other U.S. cities, when in all honesty his best bet is to read some good books on how to be a good property manager and then apply what he learns going forward. As long as his score is that low, he won’t be getting many phone calls from NABPM property owners to manage their properties. Secondly………..To you youngsters new to the profession, always make sure to dress for success. Now don’t get that one twisted either. Dressing for success doesn’t mean buying a closet full of $1,000, $2,000 or $5,000 suits that are tailor-made to fit and multiple pairs of $200 shoes. No no no no no. As a Property Manager you don’t have to be dressed as “formally” as you would be if you had a regular 9-5 job. But at the same point and time, if you and one of your Property Owners sit down over lunch to talk about a new property or several new properties he or she just purchased that they want you to manage for them, you don’t want to walk up to the restaurant dressed like you’re headed to the club either. Make sure that your attire says “business conservative”. For the fellas: -A pair of Dockers -A button-down shirt with the buttons in the collars or without the buttons in the collars -A white undershirt…….always keep that chest covered up fellas, whether you got a bird chest, or a chest like a young Morris Chestnut…….keep it covered up!! -A pair of Florsheim shoes or Rockports or Kenneth Coles or Mark Nasons -You can be a little colorful with your socks, but make sure that the colorful effect of them doesn’t scream “Clown”. For you young guys, if your ear is pierced take the earring out while conducting business. I can’t stress the importance of that enough. -Some of you men are going to be wondering “Do I need to shave the mustache and the beard like they require at a number of these private companies and in the military??”…………That’s a tough one……….definitely a tough call. For most sales-oriented jobs it’s required for men to be clean-shaven because statistics do show that men with no facial hair tend to attract higher sales numbers when contrasted with men who have a mustache and/or a beard. For some reason or another, buyers tend to feel like salesmen with no facial hair are more “trustworthy” and “honest”. I don’t know why that is but that’s simply what the statistics tell us and it’s hard to fight “the numbers”. So, should you shave your mustache &/or beard? I won’t tell you what to do one way or the other on that because, truth be told? I’ve worked with property managers with & without facial hair. Just always bear in mind that as you’re attempting to attract new clients that “attracting clients” is a form of sales. So you’ll kind of have to make that decision for yourself. If you decide to keep your facial hair you’ll definitely give yourself the best chance by making sure that it’s always well groomed. -And everything laid out there will be good enough……..just make sure you color-coordinate pretty well with your outfits………….dark colored slacks with a light colored shirts……….or dark colored shirts with light colored slacks. At the end of the day? You can always just throw on a suit if you so choose. Just know that you don’t have to go out and stockup on the most expensive suits money can buy in order to be a good Property Manager. You’re not interviewing to become a Wall Street banker or an Attorney at a big law firm. Oh and one last thing for you young brothers getting into this business, please make sure to adhere to a “no sagging” policy. If there’s 1 thing that will seriously kill your property management business is for you to meet with property owners who are potential clients and when you walk up to meet them you’ve got your pants hanging down off your a$$. I’m 100% sure that I can speak for nearly all property owners that there is no bigger a turnoff, and you can rest assured that you will NOT be landing that property owner as a client when you don’t even respect yourself enough to make sure your pants are pulled up to your waistline. Now for the ladies, because I’m a man you all are going to have to forgive me because I’m not so good with women’s clothing brand names, but you get the point: -A casual pair of slacks or a dress that comes down to or below your knees at least. -A regular collar shirt or a blouse. -I think for young ladies you’re always better off in stockings than without them in a business setting, and you’re definitely better off with closed-toe shoes. -Make sure the shoes are flats or mid-range heels…………trust me young ladies, in these business settings you’re better off not being in the highest of high heels. That sends a sexy signal, not a businesswoman signal. -And most importantly, let’s make sure that everything is fully covered up and let’s stay away from anything “form-fitting”. You want to kill your business as a woman Property Manager? Go into these business settings showing off all kinds of cleavage or wearing outfits that fit you really “tight” and emphasize your curves. There’s no quicker way to kill business than that. Other than that, make sure that you walk, speak and act like a businessperson. Try to use as little profanity as possible when you’re talking to your Property Owner, especially in front of their spouses or children. That’s really a no-no. Remember, you all are business partners, this ain’t one of your fellas………..for the ladies, this ain’t one of your girlfriends or one of your “besties” or one of your BFF’s (please forgive me using the word ain’t, just trying to get my point across), these are your business clients or potential business clients. The main thing that you young people want when you sitdown with these Property Owners is to be taken “serious” as a business person. That’s the main thing you’re looking for, to be taken “serious”. For you young ladies, how’s it going to look if you meetup with a male Property Owner who’s thinking about hiring you, he comes by with his wife who sits on the usher board at their church and you showup in a tight outfit with your cleavage hanging out all over the place screaming “Hey!!!! Look at me!!!!”??…………..You might be the best Property Manager in the world, but I’ll guarantee you his wife won’t care. All she saw was that cleavage. For you fellas on the other hand, how’s it going to look if you meetup with a woman Property Owner who’s thinking about hiring you, she comes by with her husband and there you are with shades on, an earring in your ear, your jeans hanging off your a$$, a collar shirt on with the top 3 buttons unbuttoned, with no t-shirt, and showing off the hair on your chest and you smell like Bob Marley and Heinekin?? Again, you might be the best Property Manager in the world, but I’ll guarantee you her husband won’t give a frog’s fat rear end. The only thing he saw was “Playa Playa” when he looked at you. So that’s the main thing to bear in mind as you get into the property management profession. Dress in a way where you will be taken “serious” as a businessman or as a businesswoman. Now once you’ve done everything outlined above in terms of your dress attire and making sure that you carry yourself in as decent a businesslike manner as possible? At that point you can’t do anything else to make someone’s spouse feel comfortable. Quite often you’re going to find yourselves working across gender-lines in the property management profession, so outside of dressing and carrying yourself like a serious businessman or businesswoman, you can’t do anything else to send the proper signals to potential clients and their spouses. If anybody’s got a problem with you after that, just blow it off and keep going because more than likely their issue has nothing to do with you or anything that you may or may not have done. You covered your bases and did everything you were “supposed” to do. Never forget this tip as well. Different situations will always call for different attire. If you’re sitting down for a business luncheon with a Property Owner, of course you want to dress appropriately for that occasion, but don’t think you’re expected to be “business conservative” for every occasion. If you’re meeting the Property Owner at the premises of a house so that you and your team can begin to do renovations and to paint several rooms at the property? In that case the Property Owner would expect you to be in a sweatpants or jeans, a t-shirt, a hoodie, a baseball cap and tennis shoes. So once you’ve been hired by the Property Owner you’re expected to “getdown to the business at hand” of renovating properties and filling them up with tenants. Another thing. Do NOT be afraid to be a new Property Manager who is just starting out. If you’re just getting into the property management business and you don’t have an office yet and are working out of your home? Don’t be afraid to tell that to Property Owners. That’s exactly what the purpose of this website is, to bring the property management profession to “the masses” in the Black Community. So working out of one of your 2nd or 3rd properties at the start of your career is “expected” to be honest. Crawl before you walk is the old saying, and if Property Owners ask you where your office is located, just tell them the truth that you’re working out of one of your homes. You have nothing to be ashamed of. Oh, and truth be told? Let me fill you young brothers & sisters in on a little secret. I have worked with 2 white/jewish property managers in Baltimore, BOTH OF WHOM ran their property management businesses out of 2nd or 3rd suburban or inner-city homes. In fact, one of them had that home setup like a downtown office……..they had a big sign up on the house with the name of the company, and in the front window of the house there was a big sign lit up in red that said “Open”. Now when you think about it THAT MAKES SENSE. You can run your property management business from some Downtown office where you’re paying $5,000 to as high as $20,000 a month for leased office space (which will be killing your monthly profit)…..OR you can run your property management business out of your 2nd, 3rd or 4th home where you’re paying a mortgage of $200 – $2,500 a month. Think about it. Why were those 2 white/jewish property managers running their businesses out of suburban homes instead of downtown offices?? DO THE MATH. Because those guys aren’t concerned about “appearances”. They’re concerned about MAKING MONEY. So in MY opinion? Screw appearances. You run your property management business out of one of your “additional” properties and keep right on stepping! It’ll make your property management company “highly competitive” and difficult to beat simply because you’re saving so much money every month that can be put into other parts of your business. It simply makes good business sense……(just food for thought). And here’s another tip for the most “ambitious” amongst you that want to run a property management company that you expand across the U.S. As a hypothetical say you start your property management business in Chicago out of a 4br/2ba house right? You decide to expand your company into St. Louis?? FOLLOW THE SAME FORMULA. Find you a nice, little residential home in St. Louis to run your St. Louis office. Then you decide to expand your company into Memphis? FOLLOW THE SAME FORMULA. Find you a nice, little residential home in Memphis to run your Memphis office. Then you decide to expand into Atlanta? FOLLOW THE SAME FORMULA. Find you a nice, little residential home in the ATL to run your Atlanta office. White property managers all over the country will be wondering why they can’t run you out of business and saying to each other “How do those black guys stay in business??”…..Because you’re following the Warren Buffett formula for running a business!! Warren Buffett has purchased multiple companies that had huge profit potential, and when he would buy them he would never fire the CEO and he would never interfere with them doing their work. He would only give them 1 small piece of advice that he expected them to follow to take the company to the next level…..”Keep profits HIGH and keep expenses LOW”….just that simple. That right there is what will make you highly highly highly competitive with the bigger property management firms around the U.S. and very very very difficult to beat. The only thing that I would advise you against is running your property management business out of your owner-occupied home. In my opinion it is never good for tenants to know where you and your family live. Now that’s not because tenants are of any “danger” to you. The question is this, if you were working a regular job, would you want co-workers knowing where you live?? Helllll naw!!! You don’t ever want tenants, co-workers or those you do business with knowing where you and your wife, husband, significant other and/or children live. That’s something you would never do if you worked a regular job, so don’t do it in this business either. Keep the location of your business and your home “seperate”. Another thing to bear in mind, for new Property Managers, the main thing that you’re going to get from Property Owners is “trial runs”. Many of us are going to give you a 6-12 month trial run just to see how you handle a few of our properties. From there we’re going to see if you are deserving of receiving more properties to manage. Always remember, being given additional properties to manage is your annual “bonus check”. You’re not looking for a year end bonus check………..you’re looking for a year end bonus of new properties to manage, that’s what you want. If at the end of the year a Property Manager gives you 3, 4, 8, 10 or even more properties to manage? You know right then and there that he or she are “thoroughly pleased” with your work. Remember, as a Property Manager you are a “trafficker of information”…………….that’s what you are. The main thing that you want to be doing is always steering your Property Owners to “buy in the path of progress”. You want to always have your antennas up for where brand new building projects are planning to be built………….a brand new MLB or NFL stadium or a brand new NBA arena, a brand new shopping mall, a brand new shopping town center, a brand new subway station, a brand new strip with a string of stores………….Washington DC’s National Harbor and the MGM Grand Casino currently under construction right now in 2016 is a prime example of a big building project you want to have your eyes and ears open for. Because what you’re going to do is always be talking to your Property Owners about purchasing property right around or near that new development. And the key is to buy property near that development BEFORE they begin construction on it, not AFTER it’s been built. Because once construction has been completed, all of the houses in that neighborhood have already gone up in value…………so houses in that neighborhood that used to go for $125,000 will be going for possibly as high as $240,000 on up after that big construction project has been completed. It’s too late then!!! And the biggest piece of information you’re searching for? You want to know “the exact location” where that project will be built………..and I do mean the exact location!! You want to know the exact street corner where they plan to build it. That’s the kind of information your Property Owners will find extremely valuable. You just go on Google and type up “Big Building Projects for Prince George’s County, Maryland” which is right outside of Washington, DC or “Big Building Projects for Wayne County, Michigan” which is the county that Detroit is located in, or “Big Building Projects for Fulton County, Georgia” which is the county that Atlanta is located in, or “Big Building Projects for Harris County, Texas” which is the county that Houston is located in and just see what Google pulls up. Once you know about the projects planned for that county, you want to then try to find out the “exact” location…………and from there you then tell your Property Owners, particularly the ones that are hungry to buy more property about those projects. You just tell them “Yo, they’re going to be building that brand new baseball stadium at the corner of Main and Lennox Avenue 5 years from now in the 20564 zip code. You may want to start looking to buy property over there before they start pricing them out of reach” or “Hey, they’re going to be building that new shopping mall at the corner of Center Road and Jamison Street in 3 years in the 42105 zip code. Buying property in that neighborhood right now is definitely the move because 2 and 1/2 years from now all of those houses are gonna be priced out of reach”. Being a trafficker of that type of “exact information” will make you a Property Manager worth his or her weight in gold, you hear me?? A note to Property Owners as you grade Property Managers. Always take into account the neighborhood you purchase a property in, and always keep in the back of your mind that “hood properties bring hood problems”…………….never forget that. I’ll say it again because I’m speaking from personal experience on this one……….I’ve purchased more that one hood property so I will repeat that………….”hood properties bring hood problems”. You can never forget that when grading/rating a Property Manager because their ability to get you your money every month many times will depend on the kind of neighborhood you’ve purchased a property in. If it’s a bad neighborhood? More than likely the Property Manager may encourage you to turn it into a Section 8. Why? Because if the property is a Section 8 then your money doesn’t come from the tenant, it comes directly to you from the local city government, and it comes to you like clockwork every month. These governments and municipalities never miss a payment and they’re never late like a tenant sometimes is. But if it’s a property in the middle of the hood and you’re depending on the tenant’s payment? That can make it tough for the Property Manager to get you your payments in a timely fashion every month. Lotta times when you’re in that kind of situation, you’re spending enough time dragging the tenant into court and getting judgments for past due non-rent payments, as the Property Manager continues moving the tenant closer and closer to eviction. So just always keep that in mind when grading Property Managers. Also, Property Managers?? If the neighborhood is downright busted?? You DO have the right of “refusal”……You DON’T have to manage every property you’re asked to manage!!! If you know that neighborhood inside/out and you know that all tenants in that property do is tear up houses and that it’ll be nothing but a headache for you?? You DO have the right to turn the Property Owner down on it!!!……Some of y’all are like “Have you seen White Property Managers turndown a property where the neighborhood is too much trouble??”………YOU BETTER BELIEVE IT!!!!……ABSOLUTELY!!!…..Nobody knows your particular City like YOU. So step away from properties where the neighborhoods are what they call “money-pits” due to destructive tenants…..Now back to the Property Owners if your property’s in a good neighborhood? Then you expect your payments to come more timely. If your property’s in a bad neighborhood? Either turn it into a Section 8, or give the Property Manager some leeway on “timely” collection of the rent. Oh and Property Managers? If the property is Section 8? You’ve got no excuses at that point. That Property Owner will expect that payment every month, right at the beginning of the month. Lastly, I want to set all who are coming into the property management profession at ease when I say this, because while I’ve worked with several Property Managers who owned a firearm, none have ever actually ever had to pull it out or use it. Just be advised that if you’re going to be in the property management profession, you’ll probably find it worthwhile to invest in a firearm. No, you’re not putting your life on the line like a police officer or a state trooper or an FBI agent or a member of the military, but at the same time, I’m really tight with 3 black police officers, none of whom have ever had to fire their weapon. But they still carry it at all times simply because “you never know” if you get what I’m saying. 99% of the time you won’t ever have any problems…..but every now and then you may encounter a tenant who starts “talking reckless” because he, and in a smaller number of cases she think that they can intimidate you. Here’s one other thing to be aware of…..in a number of states you conduct evictions WITH THE SHERIFF. Like here in Maryland?? The Courts and the Sheriff’s office work in conjunction with the property managers. The property manager files with the Court to have a tenant evicted, the Court then assigns a date for the eviction due to non-payment of rent, then they have you contact the Sheriff and setup the date for the eviction. On the day of the eviction in Maryland? The Sheriff and 1 or 2 of his deputies showup at the house WITH SHOTGUNS IN HAND and bulletproof vests on as well. And for you as a property manager?? It wouldn’t hurt for YOU to invest in a bulletproof vest too…..think the formal name for them is a Kevlar vest. While the possibility of there being any gunfire exchanged is “less than slim” it would still be best for you to make sure you are ready and properly protected. Some of y’all are like “Evictions are that serious??”….In the roughest neighborhoods in the U.S. they are!!….You don’t think that ALL non rent paying tenants plan on leaving “peacefully” and “without incident” do you?? If only that was how life worked…..Now in Maryland?? If the tenant says or does anything “threatening” to the Sheriff during the eviction THEY’RE GETTING THAT BACK BLOWNOUT, you hear me?? Maryland doesn’t play that…..Most states in the U.S. don’t play when it comes to evictions. Be advised that you always want to investigate each state’s eviction process, but if it’s a state where the Sheriff doesn’t assist you in conducting evictions, one thing you NEVER do is conduct an eviction BY YOURSELF….Always take “That Ape” with you. Who is That Ape?? You know who That Ape is…..That’s that former H.S. or college football player or former H.S. or college wrestler or weightlifter you’re gonna hire mainly for the purpose of assisting you in conducting evictions….He also may be former military or a former police officer who decided to get into property management because it’s “not anywhere near as dangerous”. And you can envision how he looks too, regardless of his skin color….Whether he’s black, white, latino, Asian or Indian he’s about 6’4″, weighs 230 lbs, cutup like a bodybuilder and can benchpress 225lbs twenty five times….He’s a non-violent kinda guy, maybe even a family man who’s married with a couple of kids….possibly even deeply religious…..he’s peaceful and doesn’t go out looking for violence, rarely ever does he resort to violence, he would much rather resolve issues diplomatically by just talking things out…..but if you bring it to him?? This whiteboy or this brother or this latin or Asian dude will get right down in the mud with you! As they say on the streets “He’ll make time today”. We all have encountered a few guys like that in our lifetimes. The Ape always goes with you when you have to execute evictions, especially here in the U.S…..1 Ape is good….2 Apes is outstanding….3 Apes is lovely….even the baddest of the bad tenants will “stand-down” when they see you get out of the van or the truck with 3 Apes and all 4 of y’all got bulletproof vests on and a Glock 9MM or a Sig Sauer P-320 sidearm in that holster. Seeing all 4 of y’all ready to “Get with the sh*ts” will have a calming effect on anybody who “thinks” they’re gangster cause y’all being dressed for battle says 2 things…..#1. Take a good look at this house or apartment cause in another 60 minutes all your stuff will be out on the street and there will be new locks on the door…..& #2. Most importantly WE’RE NOT IN A PLAYFUL MOOD. Now the thing to also know is this…..are evictions rough in all bad neighborhoods in all countries?? No!!! Those of you who reside in Africa, in Europe, in Australia, in the Middle East, in China, in Japan, in Singapore, in Latin America or in Malaysia I’m sure will find quite often that you have NO PROBLEMS WHATSOEVER conducting evictions in quite a few of those countries. More than likely we’re going to find as time goes on that African, European, American, Asian and Indian tenants who live in Africa, Europe, Japan, Brazil or in many other countries where NABPM members own properties are much more cooperative and significantly “less violent” than tenants in the roughest neighborhoods in the U.S…..But in the roughest & toughest neighborhoods in the U.S.?? You always have to “proceed with caution” cause some tenants in our roughest neighborhoods in the States “play for keeps” as they say on the streets….and the worst part about it is that many times the roughest and the toughest tenants here in the States LOOK LIKE US, so just be aware of that. The U.S. is simply a different animal. Over time we’ll figure out how rough or how easy it is to do evictions in other countries. Like in some of the roughest neighborhoods in Lagos, Nigeria or in Rio de Janeiro or Fortaleza, Brazil or in Tijuana or Acapulco, Mexico or in Caracas, Venezuela or in Cape Town, South Africa you may have a serious serious serious problem that requires you to carry a firearm for protection. In those cases, according to the statistics those are some of the roughest cities ON THE PLANET and you as a property manager should ALWAYS question a property owner who wants to buy rental property in those cities….(there are definitely nice neighborhoods in Lagos though)……but I’m quite sure we’ll find evicted tenants to be much safer, peaceful and easier to deal with in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia or in Paris, France or in Nairobi, Kenya, or in London, England, or in Johannesburg, South Africa or in Amsterdam, Holland, or in Accra, Ghana, or in Rome Italy, or in Kinshasa, Democratic Republic of the Congo. It’s going to take time for us to figure out what the “issues” are in these other cities around the world but I’m quite sure that “potential violence” won’t be anywhere near as much of a problem in those other countries as it is in the States. One other thing to be aware of, you’re quite often going to find yourself going into “empty” houses that one of your property owners is interested in buying. While it’s extremely rare, we’ve all read that story in the news once or twice about a homeless person “squatting” in a vacated house as a temporary place to stay, especially here in the States. Be sure that whenever you open the door of an empty house that you scream inside “Hello?!?!? Is there anybody in here?!?!” just to startle anyone who may be squatting at that residence. Be sure to check your state’s laws regarding what it would take to get a CCW license (carrying a concealed weapon). Many states will grant you a CCW license when you fill out the application and say that you work in the field of property management. Check with your local city or state government to see what the laws are where you live. Here’s something else to be aware of….Every now and then you come across that tenant who “thinks” they’re smarter than the average tenant….Occasionally you encounter a tenant who comes up with ultra cute ways to do damage to a house upon their departure…..Oh they may leave the house or the apartment once they get the eviction notice, but they’re gonna leave all the windows up in the dead of a Michigan or Illinois winter in the hopes that they can freeze the pipes which will subsequently burst and cause water & mold damage, or they’ll go up in the attic and punch a hole in the roof with the hopes of flooding the house the next time it rains, or they’ll just punch holes in multiple walls inside the house leaving extensive damage that renders the property unrentable without extensive repairs at the Owner’s expense. Haha, very funny. Well a number of States have gotten hip to that and are now allowing property managers to assess the damage left by that tenant, put together a written estimate of the amount line-by-line and the Courts are placing that damage ON THAT TENANT’S RECORD so that it follows them wherever they go for the rest of their lives (or until they pay that Owner back). All the next property managers they encounter have to do is run a simple background check on them and they’ll see that they owe the previous landlord $8,000 for damages incurred and they’ll refuse to rent to them. And that stays on their record until they pay that landlord back! Find out if the State you’re managing a property in has Courts assigning damages to a tenant’s record, because if they do that’s an excellent tool of “fear” that you can use to instill in the tenant before they move in. You can tell them when they sign the lease “Be advised that Missouri now places damages incurred by you on your record which will follow you for the rest of your life until you pay the Owner back for those damages. And make no mistake about it, we have NO PROBLEM messing up your record and making you a lifelong tenant who can’t find a landlord willing to rent to you because of your terrible documented record…..It’s not something we like doing but we have no problem doing it if we have to”. Many times that’ll be motivation for MOST tenants to just get their shyt and get out without touching anything…..but every now and then you come across that tenant who wants to say to themselves “Oh y’all ain’t gonna let me stay here rent-free??….You don’t know ME. I’m crazy” and as a property manager when you file those damage costs on their record under their name & social security number you’ll be thinking to yourself “Well hey that’s cool, I’m crazy too…..” Now by the way, please allow me to provide you with another example to give you proper perspective….Had one married couple that were my tenants in my Baltimore property several years ago who would pay the rent, then turn around and break something and demand that I fix it. And if I wouldn’t fix it they would call the City on me and report it as broken. The City would then send me a threatening letter unless I fixed whatever those tenants just broke. Now the blessing there was that these tenants started running this game on me 1 month after moving in. So I had gone through 7 months of this before I decided it best to get a property manager to handle that property. I signed the contract with that property manager in month #9 when I was completely fed-up with that married couple…..we’re talking about a 57 year old husband and a 61 year old wife behaving like little kids y’all!! I had had it up to my limit in dealing with them and this is where I want to fill you in on one of the “tricks of the trade”. Due to that property manager’s level of knowledge about Baltimore property laws he said “This is what you do. They’re on a year-to-year lease which is up in 3 months. Write them a letter in 15 days and tell them in writing that you’ve decided NOT to renew the lease. By Baltimore Law you have to give them at least 60 days OR MORE notice to vacate the premises at the end of the lease. You’ll have all your bases covered, they’ll have to get their shyt and bounce, we’ll go in and assess if there’s any damage, clean it up and get the house rent-ready for the next tenants”…..Always remember, you’re going to ALWAYS have a few cases here and there of tenants who think they’re smarter than the system, but they’re not…..they’re not. It simply pays for you as a property manager to know the game and stay ahead of it. And those are the main things I wanted to stress here as we open up the Message-Board. We look forward to doing business with you ambitious Property Owners and Property Managers on this website. Last thing……Property Managers?? Never “fear” competition on here…….If another Property Manager pops up in your City & State and they’re doing such an outstanding job that they’re taking clients not only from you but from other Property Managers, even the non-black ones?? Guess what?? You’re going to have them manage YOUR properties too!!! If the Property Management side of the business becomes too competitive in your Area then shift OUT of the Property Management business and shift INTO the Property Ownership business. That’s how you do it!! Now let’s get this money.