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Memphis Real Estate Investing

4 min read

Are You a Real Estate Investor with Staying Power?

By Chris Clothier on Fri, Feb 26, 2016

Investing in real estate is a long-term commitment—at least, to achieve the kind of success we read about so often on books and blogs. Sure, some investors hit it big or have a lot of resources to leverage from the very beginning. But for most of us, it’s years of hard work on a solid buy-and-hold strategy that guides our investments.

Over time, our passive income adds up to something big—something that fuels retirements, futures, and lifelong passions.

The dream is great. The reality is hard.

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4 min read

With Foreclosures Down, Will Homebuyer Confidence Follow?

By Chris Clothier on Sun, Feb 21, 2016

The real estate market landscape has been changing dramatically in the near-decade since the biggest recession in recent history. You’d be hard-pressed to find someone who wasn’t affected by the crash of the housing market in those years.

Even if they weren’t directly affected, they knew someone who was. They had foreclosure signs in their neighborhoods, they knew who was underwater on their mortgages. They had neighbors and friends and family who were affected.

While the nation licked their collection wounds, home buying confidence was obviously not stellar. People were afraid, and understandably so.

For years after the peak of the recession, foreclosures were still far too common, continuing to discourage homebuyers from taking the leap, thus further slowing recovery.

Topics: foreclosures
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5 min read

5 Tax Advantages & Tips for Real Estate Investors

By Chris Clothier on Thu, Feb 18, 2016

Investing in real estate is a straightforward venture...in theory. Buy a property, rent out the property, make money off of the rent. Simple, right? Unfortunately, theory isn’t reality. We have to deal with things like market climates, taxes, insurance, property management, tenant screenings, turnover, and all sorts of unforeseen complications.

One of the most daunting things for anyone of any age, real estate investor or not? Taxes.

For us, there are some unique tax advantages that we can use to leverage real value. We aren’t talking about creative tweaking that bends the rules to create write-offs. We’re talking basic principles in real estate investment that can minimize how much you pay in taxes each year, thus maximizing your passive income.

Some of these are relevant for your annual taxes, while other will be relevant year-round and for your investment strategies and decisions!

Topics: Tax tips
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5 min read

Dallas Rises Into Top 5 Real Estate Markets for 2016

By Chris Clothier on Sat, Feb 13, 2016

Big news for Dallas. While Houston has been in the spotlight for the past few years, it’s Dallas-Ft. Worth that’s on everyone’s radar for 2016!

DFW landed on Zillow’s Top Ten Hottest Housing Markets for 2016 list, and came in third: only behind Denver and Seattle. Dallas isn’t just highly regarded by Zillow: Dallas ranked fourth hottest market by Realtor.com in December, up from it’s fifth place spot the previous month. 

What’s made Dallas so hot? What are experts saying about 2016? Let’s take a look!

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3 min read

7 Principles that Help Protect Your Credit Score

By Chris Clothier on Thu, Feb 11, 2016

No matter what method of financing you as a real estate investor pursue, your credit score is always paramount to both opportunity and success in the business. Your credit score goes hand-in-hand with your reputation: except this time, it’s all money. So much can hinge on just that number.

Real estate investors, who often deal with financing with banks, private lenders, and partnerships, need to do everything they can to keep their credit score well above average. You want a glowing record so that you never have to worry about not being approved on financing for your next investment property.

So real estate investors—here are a few tips to put in your tool kit.

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4 min read

The Oil Crisis: A Blessing in Disguise for Houston Real Estate?

By Chris Clothier on Sat, Feb 6, 2016

No one can deny that Houston’s been hit hard by the oil crisis. Harder, in fact, than the disastrous crash of the late 80’s. That crash saw oil prices drop from $35 per barrel ($101 in today’s terms, adjusted for inflation) to under $10 ($22 in today’s dollar).

According to NASDAQ, oil sat at around $30 a barrel as of February 2016. In June 2014, a barrel cost nearly $114—a significantly greater drop than the crisis that brought Houston to a standstill 30 years ago.

Naturally, people are worried. The energy sector has been hit hard, and we don’t want to downplay the crisis, particularly for those experiencing layoffs or having to close their doors. But for our purposes, we look at how the oil industry is hitting the Houston real estate market.

While it can be really easy to listen to doomsaying, there are a few things we have to remember to keep things in perspective.

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3 min read

3 Tips For Maximizing Investment Property Revenue

By Chris Clothier on Wed, Feb 3, 2016

In real estate investing, it’s tempting to think that more investment properties added to your portfolio will automatically mean more profits. The fact of the matter is, it’s likely that you’re overlooking opportunities to increase your profits in the investment properties you already have.

A two angled approach makes the most sense. Real estate investors should absolute look to maximize revenue on the properties that they have AND add to their portfolios at the same time!

Real estate investment isn’t about how much money investors have to throw around and how many properties they’re renting out. Smart investing comes not just in volume, but in diligent care and attention.  It is true that there is safety in numbers, but there is also additional revenue by working with your portfolio and partners to create a smarter return.

Boosting Your Investment Property Profits

This list is going to seem, well, basic.  But the basics are what make the best real estate investors a consistent return on their investment over time.  At Memphis Invest and Premier Property Management, we have made the basics our specialty.  These are three of the MAIN reasons our clients have successfully made money over the life of owning their portfolios.  Returns can go up and down year to year, yet a consistent long-term portfolio is going to perform up to potential if investors can focus themselves or their team of providers on these three key areas.

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Minimize Vacancies

The mostly costly time for any investment property is when it is uninhabited. Every month of vacancy costs you a significant percentage of yearly profits. The best thing you can do as a real estate investor is to minimize vacancy. When you have a tenant moving out, no matter what the circumstance, start advertising as soon as you are aware of the move. Don’t wait. The only case in which you may want give some breathing room between occupants is if you’re planning big renovations that a tenant cannot stay through.

Another element to minimizing vacancies is offering something unique. What does your property offer? Convenient location, up-to-date appliances? Step back and reconsider why a tenant would want to rent from you. If your property doesn’t have some standout characteristic in comparison to other rentals in the area, maybe you should look to competitive pricing. While you don’t need to shortchange yourself on the rental price, lowering it may help attract more potential tenants more quickly and help fill the vacancy.

The money that you lose on a lower rental rate is often a better deal than the money you’d lose on months of vacancy.

Over the years, when you have long-term tenants, prices can be strategically increased to account for area competition, demand and increasing costs. Researching nearby properties is important to know what is and isn’t reasonable for your property.

Decrease Turnovers

Avoiding turnover avoids vacancy. While there are factors out of your control when a tenant decides to move on, there are plenty of things you can do to improve tenant retention.

The responsiveness of your property manager and maintenance crew is integral to tenant happiness. Your staff should excel in customer support and be polite, timely and efficient. While you may lose tenants to a career in another city or to home ownership, you don’t want to lose them to another landlord in the same area.

Keep your prices reasonable and competitive as an incentive for your tenants to stay. Take good care of the property and the needs and concerns of your tenants. Building a good relationship with them will make loyal tenants that only leave when they have to — because they’ll never want to.

Make Smart Renovations

Apart from tenant-related issues, smart renovations can go a long way to increasing the profitability of your investment property. Renovations that tenants value means you can increase rental prices. The more you can offer, the more they’re willing to pay. Your renovations shouldn’t be ultimately worth it to you, but to your tenants.

What will make their lives more pleasant? A deck or outdoor shed? Better paint on the walls? New flooring? Instead of breaking the bank on a kitchen overhaul, prioritize renovations in a way that will help you make an immediate impact on profits. Look for projects that are historically known to boost ROI.

While there is only so much real estate investors can do to maximize their profits, taking an active and attentive role in the management of one’s investment properties is one of the surest ways to make sure that you’re making the most of your investments.

Where do you find ways to increase your investment revenue? Share with us in the comments.

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image credit: Tax Credits

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5 min read

Thinking Like a Tenant to Score Properties That Pay!

By Chris Clothier on Mon, Feb 1, 2016

You can pick a new investment property that seems absolutely perfect in your mind. But is it really? Are you keeping your tenants top-of-mind when you purchase and when you decide to renovate?  It is easy to lose site of THE single most important factor when real estate investing in long-term buy and hold properties.  Tenant satisfaction leads to longer occupancy.

For real estate investors, tenant retention is one of the key elements to investment success. The longer you can keep good tenants around and fill any vacancies, the better your passive income will be.  At Premier Property Management Group, the property management firm owned by the Clothier family and providing management service to Memphis Invest, the average length of occupancy per property across the $350 Million portfolio under management is just over four years.

While historically renting has been seen as a less-desirable alternative to home ownership, that perception has been gradually shifting, both in the U.S. and abroad. A 2012 study by Property Intelligence in the UK found that 60% of renters said that they were not reluctant renters. And the 40% that are reluctant are mostly frustrated would-be buyers than anything.

Even across pond, many of the same sentiments translate over here in the United States.

So when you’re thinking about your next purchase or considering renovations, keep in mind what tenants really want out of their rental homes.

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